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[twenty twenty-four day thirty-two]: if you do what you’ve always done

centaur 0
Something new

“If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always gotten,” or so the saying goes.

That isn’t always true – ask my wife what it’s like for a paint company to silently change the formula on a product right when she’s in the middle of a complicated faux finish that depended on the old formulas chemical properties – but there’s a lot of wisdom to it.

It’s also true that it’s work to decide. When a buddy of mine and I finished 24 Hour Comic Day one year and were heading to breakfast, he said, “I don’t want to go anyplace new or try anything new, because I have no brains left. I want to go to a Dennys and order something that I know will be good, so I don’t have to think about it.”

But as we age, we increasingly rely on past decisions – so-called crystallized intelligence, an increasingly vast but increasingly rigid collection of wisdom. If we don’t want to get frozen, we need to continue exercising the muscle of trying things that are new.

At one of my favorite restaurants, I round-robin through the same set of menu items. But this time, I ildy flipped the menu over to the back page I never visit and saw a burrito plate whose fillings were simmered in beer. I mean, what! And the server claimed it was one of the best things on the menu, a fact I can confirm.

It can be scary to step outside our circle. But if you do what you’ve always done, you’ll miss out on opportunities to find your new favorite.

-the Centaur

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