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It’s Important to Get Out and Try New Things

pexels-photo-59677This may seem like a funny topic but I think there’s something to be said for getting out and exploring, especially when you have a mental illness. It can be a road trip or it can just be trying a new restaurant but it can be good to experience new things.

Over the last few months I’ve had a growing unease in my gut, I want a change, I want to do something new, I feel particularly stagnant for some reason. I don’t know if that’s because I’ve held the same routine for several years now but I’ve felt increasingly like I need something different. This has led me into considering moving which, although good, requires a good amount of money and hassle and a lot of the time I don’t entirely think through something like that before I commit to it.

That’s why I think it’s a good thing to explore some new situations.

For this reason, I’m planning a road trip this summer and I will be going up to the mountains when my schedule clears up.

The thing about getting out there though is that it requires you to be your own person, it requires you to rely on yourself for your needs which is a skill that’s valuable for anyone but especially valuable for people with mental illness.

It can be too easy to get caught in a routine that will eventually turn stagnant and that can lead to stress which is no good for anyone. This is stress about things not happening and it can cause a serious distress.

Believe me, I’ve been there.

Getting out can also give you the feeling that you can be anyone you want.

Too many times we get engulfed in the notion that we are who our friends and family think we are. When we go to a new place, even just a new restaurant we can be the people we feel like we want to be.

My friend asked me the other day if I’ve ever had the urge to take a road trip and try a different personality out on every stop of the way. It was an incredibly intriguing notion but I realized that I was happy with who I think I already am.

The sticking point was the freedom to be anyone though, the freedom of knowing that there are no expectations on you to be anyone you don’t want to be and I think that would be exciting for a lot of people and would help them grown into being the person they want to be.

Another great reason for getting out there is it gives you a sense of independence, it gives you the idea that you can do anything you want with no restrictions on what people expect of you.

It’s a great feeling to know that you don’t have to do anything you don’t want to do and while you don’t necessarily have to leave to realize that, the freedom of the open road can definitely add fuel to that fire.

Suffice it to say, we all need to escape from time to time and maybe that’s why experiencing new things is so good, it can provide that escape from our simple monotonous lives where we only do things because we’re expected to.

Sometimes we just need to shut off autopilot and go experience different ways of being and that’s perfectly ok.

It’s Important to Get Out and Try New Things

Michael Hedrick

Michael Hedrick is a writer and photographer who has lived with schizophrenia since he was 20. His work has been featured in Salon, The Week, Scientific American and The New York Times. You can purchase his book 'Connections' here or Follow his blog on Living with Schizophrenia here.

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APA Reference
Hedrick, M. (2016). It’s Important to Get Out and Try New Things. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 30, 2020, from


Last updated: 2 Apr 2016
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