It wasn’t a conscious decision. I don’t know when I started choosing to just act on whatever was the first thing my mind thought to do. Ordinarily, I’d painstakingly plan and obsess over every detail and every possible outcome of whatever I was about to do or say. For the past week or so, however, I seem to have left that behind. I’ve been feeling freer and, strangely, more relaxed since I started largely ignoring my self-control. Most importantly, this is the happiest I’ve been in a while.
My impulsiveness has taken on many forms, from the less risky task of painting my laptop’s keyboard with nail polish (taking hours to make sure the translucent polish was the perfect opacity on every single key) all the way to something I rarely have the guts to do — stand up for myself in arguments.
Let’s start with the perks of the simple things. Taking a leap and starting something without a plan is challenging, but it forces you to think on your feet and solve problems as they come along. Even if the end result is not exactly what you had in mind, there’s still a sense of pride in making something your own, as well as lessons to be learned along the way. I am still a firm believer in this and I’ve had more unsuccessful projects than I can count. Making a change in your daily life, from something simple like mine -- all the way -- to something more drastic like dyeing your hair (I have yet to accomplish that), is a sure-fire way to keep from getting bored as well as test yourself, your creativity and the limits of your ability to adapt.
Moving on to how I’ve surprised myself the most recently: I’ve found myself taking a stand in front of people and saying what I feel out loud when normally I’d be incredibly concerned about causing others anger or annoyance. Even though it may seem to cause more problems than it solves, being confident and standing up for what you want (as long as it’s reasonable) is an important skill to have in the world. I’d often find myself holding my tongue at the time and ranting later to someone who would respond with “Well, why didn’t you tell (insert name) that?!” and, of course, I'd make up a stupid excuse. Putting in effort to make sure that my voice is heard and considered has caused me to feel stronger and like my feelings and opinions are valid. This type of confidence is hard to come by for me, and the past couple weeks have made a huge difference, regardless of if I ended up getting my way or not.
I feel like I need to end this with a disclaimer stating that I am not saying you’re wrong if you don’t choose to fight your boss at work or shave your head or something like that. Everyone embraces their impulsiveness in their own way, and that is the only way that’s right for them. Mine just happens to include random bursts of artsy-ness and expert debating skills. I’m simply saying that ignoring the little voice in your head that likes to remind you of all the terrible things that could possibly happen is sometimes well worth the risk.