I love having routine & structure in my daily life. They give me a sense of control and security.

At the same time, I love to discover new things, especially when I get bored and need something new to spice things up.

This wasn’t something I would have permitted myself to do in the past. As a working mom, I thought that if I explored things that interest and excite me, I would ignore what matters most to me, which is my family.

I learned that the opposite is true. Wanting to explore new things isn’t selfish. It’s just one way to take care of myself by filling my cup and feeling satisfied.

When I allow myself to do things like this, I’m a much better person for it. I can be present for my loved ones instead of feeling stuck and dissatisfied. 

Scientists 1 say this craving for novelty is our natural tendency for curiosity, which drives us to explore, discover, gain clarity, and seek new information.

The idea of discovering new things might feel exciting & intimidating at the same time. If this is you, read my top 5 ways to discover new things. They’re some of my favorite ways to explore & satisfy my curiosity.

The best part is, you don’t have to go very far to discover things you’ll enjoy and love!

1. Visit Your Local Library

The library is one of my favorite ways to discover new things. It’s a free, public space that contains resources & information on almost anything you can think of, from composting to learning to play the guitar.

The library is not just full of books. There are vast assortments of magazines, newspapers, scientific publications, reference sections, CDs, and DVDs waiting to be discovered.

At my local library, there is a section that features new books every month and your library might have one too. If you need to find out where the new books are kept, you can always ask the librarian.

Display of new library books on a shelf.

Here are other things to discover at your local library that may be new to you:

  • display case of new and exciting things
  • classes for people of all ages
  • storytime for toddlers
  • book clubs for adults
  • job listings
  • free classes
  • interesting groups to join
  • events
  • tutoring
  • bus routes
  • low priced book sales
  • free internet
  • free passes to state parks

The library usually has a website or app where you can discover new things online such as ebooks, movies, or audiobooks, from the comfort of your own home.

It’s an awesome, low-key, and low-cost way to discover new things and you can start by getting a library card. They’re usually free and you can get one from the city and county where you live.

2. Go For A Walk

I love going for a walk outdoors, especially where there are lots of trees and greenery. There’s something about being surrounded by nature that clears my head and gets me in a grounded and neutralized state.

It’s a way for me to move stagnant energy and have it circulate throughout my body so I feel refreshed and renewed.

Two women walking on a paved path in a park.

When I’m in this state, it makes it easier for me to discover new things about myself, gain clarity, have a better understanding of issues I may be going through, or solve something I’ve been trying to figure out for a long time.

Also, when I walk, I almost always discover something new that I haven’t seen before. It’s usually something subtle like a flowering vine, petals falling from a flowering tree, or a small nest of sparrows.

Or I pass by something and see it from a different perspective, like the way the rain falls softly early in the morning or the reflection of a tree from a puddle.

Walking can be a great way to discover things that are just below your radar. It can also be a great way to clear your head, gain insights, be in the present moment, and clear out clutter to make room for more things to discover.

The next time you feel bored, lost, stuck, unclear, or like you just need some fresh air, you might want to try going for a walk.

Even if you don’t discover something new when you go for a walk, it can help you feel re-energized. It allows you to step away for a bit and clear the way for a flash of insight, a lightbulb moment, or a discovery to suddenly come into view. 

3. Step Out Of Your Comfort Zone

Stepping out of your comfort zone is perhaps the scariest way to discover something new, but can be the most effective, too.

I’m afraid of public speaking. I’ve always been afraid to let my voice be heard, which is why I decided it was something I had to overcome.

So I joined Toastmasters, a club to help you hone public speaking and leadership skills. After I joined, I overcame most of my fear of public speaking, and I discovered so much more.

I discovered that I didn’t have to be perfect to speak in public, become a leader, or manage a small team of people. 

Most importantly, I discovered that vulnerability, which I thought was a weakness, made me more relatable and more open to making mistakes so I could learn from them.

It allowed me to embrace my strengths as well as my imperfections. It made me more honest with myself and authentic around others. It gave me more confidence to speak up and express myself.

I would not have discovered these things had I not stepped outside of my comfort zone. The best part about it is, that the more you practice, the more you trust yourself to discover and do things that are new and scary.

You don’t have to step too far out of your comfort to discover new things and gain confidence in yourself. It can be small, like taking a different route to work, treating yourself to a coffee at a shop you’ve never visited before, or reading an interesting book.

When you’re ready, you can take bigger steps and discover things you never thought you could do or dream of.

4. Take A Class

If you want to discover something new, you can take a class. A class is typically a group of people learning from an expert or a master.

From personal experience, taking a class is the most effective way for me to learn about something that I’m really into.

I learn the basics, build a foundation of knowledge & experience, and gain things from a teacher that I won’t ever find from a search engine.

There are so many classes available out there that you just need to know where to look.  You can go to your local church or library and discover classes there.

Or you can go the traditional route and go back to school. You’ll discover so many things within a higher learning setting that you won’t get from going at it alone.

However, higher learning can be expensive. If you have a tight budget or schedule, you can opt to take a free class online.

The information you’ll gain is just as valuable and there are many classes to discover and choose from. Some of my favorite platforms for taking free classes are Coursera, EdX, LinkedIn, YouTube, and subreddits.

You can even check out the App Store, or its equivalent, on your phone to explore topics that interest you. There are millions of apps for you to choose from, and these days, there is an app for pretty much anything you can think of.

5. Listen To A Podcast

I am a huge fan of podcasts. Podcasts are digital, audio programs that you can download and listen to anytime and anywhere.

They typically contain a series of episodes that you can enjoy at your convenience and are a great way to discover and learn about something new.

I first started listening to them occasionally about a decade ago. I ramped it up during the COVID-19 pandemic and had to make a list on my notes app so I wouldn’t reach my data limit or lose track of the ones that interest me.

Two earphones sitting on a desk.

There are so many more podcasts than there used to be. You can pick and choose from the millions that are out there.

If you like murder mysteries, there’s a podcast for it. If you like pop culture, there’s a podcast for it. If you’re into the history of gnomes, there’s a podcast for it. You get the idea.

The best thing about podcasts is how convenient they are. Podcasts are a godsend for someone like me, a wife & working mom of 3 who loves learning new things.

I can explore and discover something new & exciting while getting ready in the morning, driving to work, cleaning the dishes, or cooking.

In a perfect world, I would set aside time just to listen to and enjoy my podcasts. I would probably have a notebook and pen to jot down insights and random notes.

But I live in the real world and listening to podcasts on the go so I could discover new things is the next best thing.

If you’re like me and you want to discover new things in a way that fits conveniently inside your schedule, podcasts may be the answer. Chances are, there’s a podcast out there waiting for you to discover.

Last Thoughts On Things To Discover

When you get the urge to discover new things, you can do something grand like trekking across the country or backpacking the globe.

If you’re not into that, or you don’t have the means to discover things on a grand scale, you don’t have to venture very far.

You can discover new things from the comfort of your home, by taking a class, while walking around your neighborhood, inside your local library, or when you take a small step outside of your comfort zone.

More Ways To Discover New Things

If you’ve never embarked on a self-discovery journey and you need a place to start, check out this helpful guide: Self-discovery questions + printable pdf to know yourself on a deeper level.

If you want to discover your life’s passions and don’t know where to start, read A list of over 130 passions to inspire and motivate you.

Finally, if you love writing and want to discover different ways to use a blank notebook, be sure to read 35 creative notebook ideas to inspire you.

What do you think of my list for discovering new things that you’ll enjoy? Are there any you can think of to add? Please share them in the comments!

Sources:

  1. Frontiers in Psychology “The psychology and neuroscience of curiosity”.

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