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Room for Unexpected

”That's not what I want”, “Why did I do that again?” - my mind is spinning in circles on an occasion. OK, maybe more often recently than ever.

So, my ears perked up hearing some new information on how the brain works. Neuroplasticity, it’s called, and it’s a hope for you and me. I am far from being a scientist but I learned that neurons are messengers that pass the information to different areas of my brain and the nervous system.

It has been discovered that we can change and improve our life and our thinking, regardless of age, by simply practicing new things. Practicing change and acting upon it.

Interestingly, the path our neurons travel on, is very special – frequent thoughts and behavior ingrain a set of "highways" in our brain, which is strengthened by repetition - so we naturally default to that behavior a lot. “That’s the way I am” we say. For the unused behaviors, the brain literally eliminates unused “roads”.

The problem is that we don’t like the unexpected, the changes, the problems, and yet – we want the new outcome, better results. Even if we know the simple paradox of it – doing the same thing and expecting different results…

It turns out that by introducing more flexibility and more changes, even if it creates a bit more chaos, you get mental benefits. So instead of resisting change, we can pro-actively look for a way of doing things differently.

One can choose a new route to work, new hobby, or even like my friend Marianna fall in love with pole sports. The idea is to be willing to skip the “usual” and go for the unexpected. I started brushing my teeth with my left hand, play table tennis with a left hand, as well. At first, it’s awkward, even pitiful. But it is a change. “Grow few pathways” we joke. Make your brain more elastic.

I think that life becomes a bit easier when we make room for some randomness. It's almost like introducing a bit more chaos, we become more tolerant and open for new possibilities.

Clothing works right in with that concept, as well. We get used to what "works for us", the shape, the styles. But can we leave some room for the creativity and surprise? Simple as trying different styles or colors, putting unexpected patterns together – we might sprout a new leaf.

There is beauty in keeping a pliable attitude, questioning existing opinions, inviting new choices to our lives. I hope we all can try that, making new selections and considering the opposites - for the wardrobe and other life choices.

I think in all of us there is more than we have expressed so far and finding new pathways brings us closer to how unique we are. And we have it in us to surprise ourselves with how much fun we can have with that!

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