To make a project more appealing and interesting, use contrast. This advice reminded me of something my co-author, Chris Michaels wrote when we were creating Spiritual Seeds. His advice was “don’t be boring!” It’s something I try to keep in balance by enjoying a little contract in my life so that I avoid becoming monotonous to myself and others.
Henry David Thoreau’s observation nails it: There is an incessant influx of novelty into the world, and yet we tolerate incredible dullness.
Life is fascinating and yet how easily I can settle into being a creature of habit and settle into my routing. Sometimes it is because I’m driven by my preference for comfort and nothing is more comfortable than the path well traveled. So I try to ask myself from time to time “Where is the adventure?” When I do turn my attention to this question it becomes quickly apparent that I don’t have to go far away or spend a lot of money to encounter something new, different and interesting. I happen to live in paradise, nevertheless, it can seem dull to me if I dwell in a rut of familiar routines and activities.
That saying, all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy, is yet another reminder that even the most fascinating activities (I really love my job) without contrast can become boring. And, when my spirit of creativity grows weary from neglect I find myself longing for something new to witness, express or engage in.
At times like these I begin in my mind by asking questions that introduce some new ideas. I know I don’t have to act on any of these questions or the answers that rise up from them, but without asking the questions I don’t add the contrast in mind.
I ask things like:
Asking the questions is how I start in mind. I let the questions work in me, and if they produce and answer, I let the answer percolate in me. And if the prodding from the answer becomes strong enough, I follow it.
- If you could do anything you want to make a living what would it be?
- What activity do you love doing so much that when you’re doing it you lose track of time? And when last did you do it?
- What issues in society do you care about deeply? And what can you do to contribute to that cause?
- What hobbies do you have, or used to have, or ought to have?
- What do you do that when you do it you feel the most alive? And when last did you do it?
If you are more practical in your approach to spiritual living, perhaps these suggestion will produce the same effect as asking the questions will for others.
Go somewhere you’ve never been before, in your own neighborhood. Take you camera along and document the journey.
Study a subject you’ve always been sort of interested in. Really get into it. Pick up a book from the library, purchase The Complete Idiot’s Guide on the subject from your local bookstore, climb into Wikipedia and seek it out and become a know-it-all about the topic.
Create a bucket list of things you want to do, be, experience or have while you’re still on this planet.
Whatever you do, never settle for indifference. Life is beautiful and, in my opinion, should be revered, respected, worshiped, cherished, enjoyed, expressed, nurtured, explored and loved.
Next post will be about the design element of Gradients and how that too can be applied to spiritual living.
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