Learning to Like New ThingsMay 30, 2021
What if you could take an activity you don’t enjoy, and turn it into something you look forward to?
Maybe you don’t like public speaking, or washing the dishes, or exercising, or giving performance reviews.
I used to think that avocados were disgusting. I used to hate managing other people. I thought, better to just work independently, so I don’t have to deal with “difficult” individuals. But both of those preferences have changed 180 degrees. How?
It’s easy to chalk up the difference to ‘oh my preferences changed’. But to me that’s not very satisfying. Really, the preferences just changed on their own? Like magic? It may seem that way, but I’m not so sure. I think what’s more likely is that I changed something in my way of seeing, I changed something in the way I interpret these events.
- Suddenly I could see nuance where previously I had seen uniformity.
- Suddenly I could see challenge where before I had seen monotony.
- Suddenly I experienced curiosity where before I had experienced fear or disgust.
Perhaps it started with an eye-opening experience or a conversation with a helpful mentor. But I still think there was a moment of choice, where I decided to look at my situation differently.
And if that’s true, it’s a big deal. Because it suggests that my likes and dislikes are not some random set of preferences, shaped by the wind and shifting aimlessly. It suggests that I have the power to shape my likes and dislikes. And the more open-minded I am, the more freedom I have to design my preferences out of choice instead of fear and obligation.
I bet you have this power too. What will you do with yours?