Having an open mind to new ideas and experiences can be a wonderful thing. But there are some people that are just close-minded and set in their ways. (Like my husband, at times! 🤣) You can still maintain your own opinions and beliefs and have an open mind. And there are so many benefits to letting other beliefs and ideas come into your life.
“Minds are like flowers – they only open when the time is right.”Stephen Richards
With a chronic condition, it can be difficult to be willing to open up and try new things – unless, perhaps, it’s a new treatment or medication filled with the promise of reducing pain and symptoms! There is a great amount of social anxiety for those of us with chronic illness and/or pain. The fear of leaving the house…the fear of a flare or more pain or exhaustion…the fear that people just won’t understand why we can’t do as much as they can.
For years of being afraid of getting injections in my back or neck. It won’t work. It will cause more damage and pain. I finally gave in and had Epidural Steroid Injections (ESI) for some acute lower back pain. Although sore for a few days after that, I have been pain free ever since…. Two plus months, and counting. (Fingers crossed) And I am so glad I finally opened myself up to that treatment. Tears of joy literally streamed down my face when I woke up and the pain was relieved.
Benefits to Having an Open-Mind
I found these benefits on the blog Positively Present:
Letting go of control. When you open your mind, you free yourself from having to be in complete control of your thoughts. You allow yourself to experience new ideas and thoughts and you challenge the beliefs you currently have. It can be very liberating to look at the world through an open mind.
Experiencing changes. Opening up your mind to new ideas allows you to the opportunity to change what you think and how you view the world. Now, this doesn’t mean you necessarily will change your beliefs, but you have the option to when you think with an open mind.
Making yourself vulnerable. One of the scariest (and greatest) things about seeing the world through an open mind is making yourself vulnerable. In agreeing to have an open-minded view of the world, you’re admitting you don’t know everything and that there are possibilities you may not have considered. This vulnerability can be both terrifying and exhilarating.
Making mistakes. Making mistakes doesn’t seem like it would be much of a benefit, but it truly is. When you open your mind and allow yourself to see things from others’ perspectives, you allow yourself not only to recognize potential mistakes you’ve made, but also to make new mistakes. Doesn’t sound like much fun, but it’s a great thing to fall and get back up again.
Strengthening yourself. Open-mindedness provides a platform on which you can build, piling one idea on top of another. With an open mind you can learn about new things and you can use the new ideas to build on the old ideas. Everything you experience can add up, strengthening who you are and what you believe in. It’s very hard to build on experiences without an open mind.
Gaining confidence. When you live with an open mind, you have a strong sense of self. You are not confined by your own beliefs, nor are you confined by the beliefs of others. For that reason, you are able to have and gain confidence as you learn more and more about the world around you. Open-mindedness helps you to learn and grow, strengthening your belief in yourself.
Being honest. There is an honesty that comes with an open mind because being open-minded means admitting that you aren’t all-knowing. It means believing that whatever truth you find might always have more to it than you realize. This understanding creates an underlying sense of honesty that permeates the character of anyone who lives with an open mind.
Like a Flower…
It’s springtime! A time for growth, enjoying the outside, and shedding some of the winter doldrums. Like a flower, you will know when the time is right to open yourself up to something new. You can start simple: Plant some flowers. Try a new restaurant or recipe. Give yourself a mini-makeover.
“You know those things you’ve been wanting to do? You should do them!”
So to brighten your day, and encourage you to get outside and enjoy some new experiences, here are a few recent flower pictures I have taken. Cherry blossoms in Portland….the Clematis in my front yard…and an Amaryllis opening, when the time is right. ❤
Cherry Blossoms, Portland, Oregon. It was like pink snow falling on my head and carpeting the ground, as I walked underneath. 💗
I came home from cold and rainy Portland to 90 degrees in Texas to find these beautiful Clematis on my front porch! 💜
Amaryllis! These pictures are four days apart. ❤️
Be receptive to new ideas, new viewpoints, and new experiences! It can help you gain strength and confidence. And you might just discover something that you really love, that was missing from your life.
Are you have open-minded or are you set in your ways? Does your heart yearn for something you’ve been wanting to try, but just haven’t gotten up the nerve? I would love to hear from you!