written by Angie Morgan & Courtney Lynch

Most of our hours, days, and weeks as professionals are filled with activities and tasks that we are qualified to do, we have experience in doing, and we wash, rinse, and repeat in a quality way. We make the calls, write the reports, handle the meetings, and support our colleagues. It’s great to be experienced. Yet, how did we get that experience? How did we figure out our preference? By trying something new.

Effective leaders work to keep a bit of new in their lives consistently.

If doing something new seems inconvenient or perhaps even daunting, you owe it to yourself to re-think the value of freshness. Especially in the wake of a pandemic that can have us feeling dull, uninspired, or bored more than we’d care to admit. Doing something new is low stakes. It’s about different, not dedication or duty. You can try something once and feel no obligation to ever bring it into your daily realm of responsibility again. New can be just for joy not for commitment.

Here are simple things you can do to bring a freshness to your days:

  • Change your choice of media. If you typically read the news on your phone, buy a newspaper for a change of pace. If you normally watch FOX, check out CNN next time. If you often listen to the radio in the car, try a podcast instead.
  • Get moving at a different time of day. If you typically exercise in the morning, switch it up and exercise at lunchtime instead. While routine can be helpful, a change in your schedule can give you new insight into what’s best for keeping your energy consistent.
  • Do something fun at a random time. Take a morning off to visit a museum, or shop for an hour in the middle of the afternoon. Visit the spa on a weekday or take in a ballgame on a weeknight. Fun can’t be just for the weekend.
  • Eat at a restaurant you’ve never been to. Something as simple as picking a new place to try can bring a sense of newness to a typical Thursday. Even better, enjoy the meal with someone you don’t normally dine with.

Leading well requires agility and adaptability.

By consistently bringing a little bit of intentional disruption to your habits and patterns in simple and enjoyable ways, you’ll be better able to flex, stretch, and excel in the bigger moments of life when new, different, or out of the ordinary happens unexpectedly.

Looking for more leadership insights? Sign up for our free, weekly newsletter to get timely leadership tips delivered directly to your inbox each Monday.