As our final post for June, let me offer a final suggestion for tackling the new and scary. Sample!
The concept of sampling is one that we relate to woth food. We try little bits of something, often many somethings, to discover new tastes and new fare. It isn’t a commitment to anything, and the opportunity to change and try other things still exist, but opportunities for trying things isn’t missed.
Sampling can apply to so many aspects of trying new and potentially scary things. Culture, language and of course food can all be sampled. And if you find something too scary, it’s only a sample. Try something else.
When was the last time you went someplace totally new? It could have been across town or across the country or even across an ocean, that doesn’t matter. What matters is that it was new, different, and out of the ordinary for you.
Remember, we have been talking about doing something scary this month, and visiting someplace new can certainly be scary. Even if language and customs are similar and shared, norms and expectations may be just different enough to cause you to question your comfort zone.
And in doing so, the man of style and substance learns, grows, and gains an opportunity to add to his style and demonstrate the substance of his character.
So, go someplace new.
In continuing with the theme of accepting challenges, I offer this one: start a conversation with a stranger.
We often avoid conversations beyond small talk in general, which is a shame. Conversation with new people often results in new insights, new understanding and, occasionally, a new friend.
I did this earlier today. At a meeting I sat down next to a total stranger. During the break, I started by asking her name. It was really that easy.
And then I listened. This is perhaps the scariest part of conversation, because after the first question is asked, it is completely out of our control.
And that’s why this challenge is so critical.