by: Dr. David McIntosh, Ball State University
Feeling in rut? Feeling you are in the same routine day after day? Try doing something different and unexpected today! My wife often says she never knows what I am going to do next or what the plans are from day-to-day! During our entire relationship, I have always avoided being predictable. I plan unexpected day trips, activities, and surprises all throughout the year! In doing so, it breaks up our routine, keeps us on our toes (My wife mostly!), and makes things exciting. I remember waking my wife up and saying to her today we are going to walk 60,000 steps in one day! Today we are going to earn that 60,000 step badge on Fitbit. This was at 5 a.m. in the morning, too! After a little convincing, we started. We walked throughout the entire day and finished before midnight! We had a blast! We talked, we caught-up on each other’s lives, and walked trails we never had walked before. We still talk about that day! On another occasion, we were out driving and I packed a picnic lunch without her knowing and we drove to my hunting lease and spent the afternoon relaxing and reading on a blanket…with no kids around! Then, there was the time I planned a week at Orange Beach on the Gulf and we told the kids we were headed to the outlet stores south of Indy. We were past Louisville, KY before they started asking about what was going on (Note: We had packed their bags and put them in the trunk without them knowing.). We had a blast that week! Doing something different and unexpected doesn’t have to take a lot money or any money at all. It does take motivation and at times, some planning. This year more than ever, I think it is important to break our routines and doing something unexpected will help us physically and mentally. Doing something different helps avoid becoming cognitively and emotionally fatigued. I think the same is true in school. Doing something different and unexpected in the classrooms from time to time is important. Having a special guest, doing a wild and crazy science experiment, having a friendly competition like growing green beans but watering them with different things (e.g., coffee, apple juice, Kool-Aide (Grape is the best!), pop) to see which one grows taller or taking an unexpected fieldtrip, can breakup the classroom routine. In summary, being spontaneous from time-to-time is okay and can really help breakup the daily routine! So, go for it!
About the author:
Dr. David McIntosh is a faculty member at Ball State University.