SOAR Activation – 52 New Things

As part of my SOAR focus this year (A=activate), I wanted to try new things, create new habits, make art to express my uniqueness….basically live the retirement lifestyle I envisioned for myself. Over at My Life Lived Full, Joanne reported on her year of 52 New Things, which aligns great with my year’s activate goals. And it gives me a great measurement tool and another list to keep (I love lists)!

For the 52 new things Joanne encourages you to consider travel, local stay-cation activities, new foods/recipes, experiences, personal development, learning/classes, restaurants, creative expression. She says to look to the scary and audacious. She also encourages to plan some and to being open for spontaneity.  For me, it’s a lot about saying “yes”!

This 52 new things is challenge for me for 2 reasons:

  • I’ve added many new things into life in the past 3 years (from yoga to blogging to Walk & Talks). Many of these things I love and want to continue which leaves less time for new.
  • There is a balance of being in my comfort zone and risk taking. And I like being in my comfort zone a lot; new things are often risky.

But I thought… how hard could it be to do just one new thing a week? And as part of my retirement lifestyle activation (and continued personal growth), I really do want to be pushing myself outside my comfort zone.  So I took it on… 52 new things in 2018.

For a mid-year status, so far this year (with Out of Comfort Zone items marked with a *):

  • 2 Really Big Things – beat cancer (full set of radiation treatments) and joined Impact 100 Philanthropic group, including participating on a committee *.
  • 6 New Fun Furnishings to continue setting up new house space – super-cute ottoman for my attic office, terracotta bowl for shell display, backyard fire-pit, backyard Adirondack chairs, and 2 new chairs for the living room.
  • New Restaurants – 15 so far this year! I adore trying new restaurants and both my Mid-Week Foodie Friends and some Compatible Couples are always happy to come along! And yes, there were some new foods in there – the most audacious were pig’s eye * and pickled chicken heart *.
  • 9 Experiences/Events – Art of Food, 12-Kitchens Charity event, glass blowing class, OTR tour *, event at new Shakespeare Theater, Carriage House Farm dinner, Mad Tree Community Yoga *, Dog Sitting *, Art Museum’s Terra-Cotta Army Exhibit.
  • 7 New Lifestyle Elements – Thai Massage (multiple), 21-day meditation podcast *, explored Tarot, New Moon rituals, Mall walks, Cooking Club (Hello Fresh/Blue Apron), started Supplements (probiotics, glucosamine, biotin, Vitamin D).
  • 8 Live Theater productions at Ensemble Theater and Playhouse in the Park (we have such great live theater locally!)
  • Wrote multiple foodie reviews with a foodie friend (hoping to get published in local magazine).
  • Car shopping by myself *; completed first draft of my book; and joined multiple blog-link-ups.

Hubby is encouraging me to try new things – new foods to eat, new experiences to try. And just knowing I’m keeping a list is empowering me to spontaneously try things (like eating a pig’s eye).  It looks like hitting 52 new things this year won’t be as challenging as I thought!

What new thing have you tried this week?

Picture Credit: Pixabay

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40 thoughts on “SOAR Activation – 52 New Things

  1. Love this! It’s always a good idea to try new things and I’ve been trying to do that more. We do have great theater in Cincy – I need to visit Playhouse in the Park and Ensemble though. I’ve never been to those! But I do love Cincy Shakespeare and the Aronoff Center. OTR tour sounds fun – I did the Findlay Market tour and I recommend that!

    -Lauren
    http://www.shootingstarsmag.net

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Pat! I am almost SURE I left a comment on your blog a few days ago…but I don’t see it here. I know sometimes they end up in moderation and other times they simply disappear. Did you see it? Anyway, I loved this post but not sure it will remain…. Hm…. ~Kathy

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  3. I love the idea of doing one new thing every week but I’m not sure if I could sustain that. However, one new thing a month is worth a try.
    dropping by from the Lovin’Life linkup

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  4. What a great challenge, Pat! I am impressed by the things on your list. These aren’t just little things. Would you say there has been anything you regret trying? Not things you wouldn’t do again, but are glad you tried, but anything you’d recommend against? Just curious. I tried a new photo optimization software (small thing, but fun) this week and reached out to a life coach (scary!), but haven’t actually met with her yet.

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    1. Oh my… what a challenging question. I would not eat the pig’s eye again, but I’m glad I tried it. 🙂 The philanthropic committee is another I won’t do again. (Actually found it more stressful than engaging.) Or do any more glass blowing. (wasn’t that much fun to it, it’s more interesting to watch a talented person do it!) And I hope to never have to do cancer treatment again! I don’t think I regret anything on the list, though. And most were quite fun.

      BTW – I am a certified life coach… we are nothing to be scared of! If you don’t hit it off with her, find someone you do connect with. I often call my blog my own life coach… I put things on paper to work them out in my head. And it’s been helpful as I’ve “met” many others in the blog-o-sphere on a similar journey. Good luck with your connection.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I don’t know how I didn’t realize you were a certified life coach. That would explain your wisdom. 🙂 I’ve toyed with the idea of getting a certification if only to help me coach myself and with the direction of my blog. However, I thought it made sense to work with an experienced coach first. I have worked with a writing coach and a career coach on specific projects, but never a more general coaching.

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      2. I got the certification when I realized that I toyed with the idea multiple times on my career path. But I don’t really utilize it as I’m trying not to “work” much these days. I’ve coached a few folks through retirement transition which became my speciality in training. I also used it to help myself – I think you can as well, if you decide to take that path!

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  5. Your post makes me feel like a slug. lol We don’t even try new places to eat. I will say being with my husband as he goes through cancer treatment is a different experience from when I was an oncology nurse and advising folks. It is a whole different ball game from this side and I wish I had known what I know now back then.

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    1. Vistoria- do not compare and despair!! Small things can be new things – try a new way of driving somewhere, a new radio station in the car, or something new on a menu at a place you’ve always gone.

      And yes, going through cancer treatment is a mind-opening experience. I will say that I am so grateful for the advances in screening, diagnosis and treatment and the doctors and nurses I met through it all. Everyone is different in their specific diagnosis & treatment, how their body responds – so I won’t even try and say I understand where you are with your husband’s care. I am very very grateful that I am through treatment and now focusing on getting back to fully living.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh I love the idea of purposely (and purposefully) trying new things. I’m not sure when retirement will be for me (I’m only 50 and still have a mortgage and can’t access superannuation for a loooong time) but guess there’s no reason I can’t do my own version earlier! #teamlovinlife

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    1. Deborah, you certainly do not need to wait till retirement! One new thing a week… and the definition of new can be very broad. Try a new way to work, a different place for lunch, or just ordering something you’ve never tried. A few small things made me feel very empowered to try some out of comfort zone things!

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  7. You’re ticking off so many things. I love trying new restaurants too. We have a little bowl at home that’s filled with the names of places we want to try & each week one gets drawn out. I really should be blogging the series – 52 lunches.

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  8. I didn’t know you’d had cancer Pat – so glad you’re at the other end of the journey now. And you continue to inspire me with all the new things you’ve been adding to your list. I don’t seem to be ticking as many as you, but I’ve made a start on a few over the last couple of weeks – so I’m very proud of slightly-adventurous me atm!

    Thanks for linking up with us at #MLSTL and I’ve shared this on my SM xx
    Leanne | http://www.crestingthehill.com.au

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Leanne, I’ve often called myself a latent adventurer. I admire people who are adventurous and active and want more of that in my life. It’s part of my life vision and a bit of why I choose the word SOAR for this year. Being a list lover helps… and Joanne’s guidance on being broad on what’s new also helps! I have found it very empowering. Think broadly and you’ll have more on your list as well. Technically “a few over the last couple of weeks” is more than one a week… so you’re hitting it. 🙂

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  9. Hi Pat, I was sure I left you a comment on this one??? Firstly, I’m so happy that you have overcome Cancer which I didn’t know that you had. You have such a wonderfully positive attitude to life which I admire. I love the idea of trying something new each week for a year. You have inspired me to start thinking about actually doing this myself. Sometimes we get so caught up in life that we forget to explore new opportunities, so thanks for the reminder. Life is too short not to get out there and live! Great to have you link up with us at #MLSTL

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Sue. LOL on leaving comments… every once in a while my system refuses my comments and I give up, telling myself I’ll go back… or I need to think about my response…. and then I forget. I’ve loved the MLSLT because I get a reminder of some posts that I read and didn’t comment yet. Or I look at others comments, see responses, and get more insights.

      I’ve really enjoyed this idea of something new each week. It is amazingly empowering for someone trying to be more active in life. We are planning to be at our beach house most of June and I’m wondering how I’ll get in something new each week there… it’s a planned chill out time. Beach yoga, beach walks, SUP, and seafood dinners. All great, but nothing new!

      I’m be looking for your 52 new things update at the end of the year.

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  10. I love the idea of segmenting “new things” into various categories instead of thinking all “new things” have to be huge changes. I suppose one new thing I have tried over the past few weeks is to join the midlife community and connect with others. A bit outside my comfort zone – but I am loving it 🙂

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    1. Molly, I’m so glad you’re venturing into the midlife on-line community! I have found it amazingly supportive and inspirational. The idea of 52 new things came from this community, as well as looking at the little things for it. Big changes take longer (and are important as well), but little things can add joy into each and every day. Thanks for adding your voice to the community!

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  11. Was the pig’s eye raw or cooked? 🤢

    Cooked I could do. Raw – I don’t think so.

    Did I try anything new this week? Well, yes. I roasted my own beef marrow bones. That roasted marrow is incredible on a crusty piece of baguette with a little sea salt sprinkled on it. I’ve had it at restaurants, but this is the first time I’ve made it at home.

    I also bought a used sausage stuffer because I swore that I would not make homemade kielbasa again until I had one because it’s such a PIA to stuff the casings with a grinder. I got lucky and found a commercial stuffer for less than 10% of what it would cost new.

    Finally, I tried wine made with a new varietal called Juan Garcia. It is about the 132nd varietal I’ve tasted so far.

    It’s been a good week and it’s only Tuesday. Ha ha.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Bob… It was cooked. And no, I would not eat one again. (BTW – Bauer Farm Kitchen – downtown, needs 3 days notice to prepare the pig-head… great for a group of about 5-7 adventurous people.)

      Your own sausage and wine, hmm? When am I getting a invitation to dinner? LOL.

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  12. Congratulations on beating cancer and making a philanthropic commitment! I found that one a bit challenging as well, but have landed in a nice group. Completing a draft of a book deserves its own bullet! Good job!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Tracey. Thanks for the comment about the book being its own bullet point…maybe when I’m done editing it! I’m not sure I’m going to continue the philanthropic thing… not only was it challenging, it was more stressful than fun. It’s good to hear you landed in a nice group.

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  13. I’ll see your pickled chicken heart and raise with a cow’s tongue of my own. Sounds like a meal at a Basque restaurant if I’ve ever had one (which I have!). A great start and set of challenges for yourself, Pat. And good for hubby for pushing you to try new things. I’m not sure Martha Stewart would approve, but I bet Julia Child might! – Marty

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    1. Marty, Close about the Basque! It was a local German/French restaurant that talks the nose-to-tail farm-to-table message. We went for the “pig-head dinner” which you order 3 days in advance to be prepared. And yes, there was pig tongue and pig ear as well. The large charcuterie board that we added in (there were 7 of us and a pig head only goes so far) was where the pickled chicken heart came in. I’m an adventurous diner usually, but this was pushing it even for me.

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      1. Depends on how much mezcal I had beforehand… actually, I’m kidding, I ate them completely sober. I’m not anxious to try them again but they weren’t terrible. It’s the thought more than the taste that’s off-putting.

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    1. Donna, I don’t think I would have tried either if I wasn’t thinking about this “52 new things” idea. It’s really empowered me to say yes to opportunities and to try things I’ve said I’d do for awhile. I wonder if that empowerment will stay after I hit my 52?

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  14. At first I thought you were crazy. Then I compiled my list of “new” for the year and I’m definitely on track. Now this assumes that you can count seeing a new play while doing an old habit (ushering), or visiting a new restaurant with an old friend, or taking a new cooking class with an “old” group of friends as new. I am not the planner that you are but “go with the flow” simplying taking advantages of opportunities that “pop up”. I’m glad to see though that my “flowing” is still resulting in lots of “new” experiences. I’m six years into retirement and still feel I’m in the honeymoon phase using Retirement Quest language. My dad has been retired 32 years with zero planning and is still extremely happy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think what the 52 new things idea did for me was empower me to both plan some of the new experiences and also to go with the flow (say yes) when things come along. Eating the pig-eye was definitely a go-with-the-flow moment! I thought it would be hard as well…but new classes, new restaurants, new plays, even a new genre of music/book reading could all “count”. It’s your definition of new!

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  15. By my count, you listed 49 things – and it’s only the beginning of June!! You’re rocking it! It sounds like you’ve fully embraced this ‘new things’ idea 🙂

    The first one – beating cancer – is by far, the most significant 💕 I hope you can hear my WOOHOOS from here!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Joanne, Yeah, I was going to wait till later in the month to see if I got to 52… but didn’t have any other blog post ready to go. June is not yet looking very new-thing eventful. (nothing planned anyway) And yes, the first one is by far the most significant (and took up most of the beginning of the year). Now, it’s all about having fun.

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  16. I love your enthusiasm Pat, your go-get-em spirit and your list… with the exception of the pig’s eye and pickled chicken heart. Ew, ew, ew. My big curiosity on those two is why, oh why, would anyone ever think that those should be prepared and served in any restaurant anywhere?

    Beating cancer is as big as all 52 things altogether. Congratulations, Pat. That is just the very best of all news.

    In response to your question – new things I’ve tried this week – stopping doing when I don’t feel like doing. That felt pretty awesome, so awesome in fact that it could easily turn into an old new thing.

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    1. Karen As to the restaurant…it’s one of the “nose to tail” restaurants that prides itself on using all of the parts. It was fun to try with some other adventurous diners. I don’t think I’d do either again, but it’s a great thing to be able to say I did.

      And yeah, beating cancer is top of my list this year for sure! I’m still amazed at the advances in cancer treatment… versus my Mom (cancer survivor of 30 years) and even some good friends (2, 5, and 10 years now).

      Hmm, stop doing as something new to start is an interesting idea. I’ll need to think on that.

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