There are two kinds of people– those who find it easy to make quick decisions for their own enjoyment, and those who do follow their passions too but with much deliberation and planning, avoiding spontaneity. Nothing wrong with that, but always needing time and a lot of consideration might lead you to miss out on perfect moments, big and small.
Realizing that you want more from life is natural. We all seek to have something more meaningful appear in our lives. But, it might be the case that a lack of spontaneity is the cause. Don’t wait for ‘timing’ or signs. Some things are worth that unplanned leap.
Being spontaneous means you open yourself up to both worlds– more opportunities and more risks.
You take those risks in mind and accept you don’t always have to win. Or maybe you still ‘win’ through learning from your experiences. Either way, you grow and transform to become a better version of yourself.
- Benefits Of Spontaneity In Your Life
- How to Train Yourself To Be More Spontaneous
- Spontaneity is Needed For Change
Benefits Of Spontaneity In Your Life
Adapting spontaneity to your lifestyle brings growth to all areas of your life: your career and business, your grit, your mental and spiritual health, your relationships with your family and friends, and just about everything that can add spice to your life.
No Dull Moments
So much is said about having routines, and many of us spend our days with them. Driving the most convenient route to work, checking off the same tasks for work. The monotony gradually leads to feeling a sense of lack in our lives, causing us to daydream about the other ways our life could pan out if we were not held down by our responsibilities
But when you’re a spontaneous person, you find ways to make life interesting, even if you do the same things everyday. It could be eating a different lunch or maybe changing the way you spend your break. You say yes to colleagues or friends who invite you out. These little variations can add some wonder to your days and might even inspire you with ideas, which brings me to my next point.
In a study, researchers found a positive relationship between those who were spontaneous and their creativity. Creative people tend to be more spontaneous and spontaneity helps increase creativity. (1)
When you welcome spontaneity into your life, you can work at your own pace, without worrying about constraints too much. Or you do have fixed hours for work but you don’t let it cage you. You have a mindset of openness to new approaches and new experiences, which always adds new information to your worldview.
More Flexibility, More Resilience
By being more spontaneous, you inherently become more flexible with taking risks. The more you flex your snap decision-making like a muscle, the better you become in anticipating and quelling setbacks.
Through all the insights you gain from your varied experiences and previous triumphs, spontaneity improves your confidence and ability to solve problems and increases your resilience to unanticipated disruptions.
Big And Small Wins
Spontaneity drives you to become a more confident person in general. You don’t fear making decisions, and since you’re open to more experiences, you’re more likely to succeed in life.
According to a study, people who are open to new experiences are more likely to find themselves in managerial and professional positions. (2) You’ve probably seen it yourself in job postings. Companies want someone truly open-minded and flexible because they’re the ones who can come up with smart solutions to achieve goals.
Spontaneity guarantees a lot of potential small and big wins everyday. Count them that way even if it’s not apparent yet at the time, whether it’s just a day trip with your family that everyone talks about for years or signing up for what turns out to be an opportunity of a lifetime.
More Happiness And Self-Satisfaction
All of the above benefits of spontaneity makes you happy. You foster better relationships with people and you make yourself proud through your bravery and agility. You also feel more free because you let yourself act on your current emotions and thoughts. You live in the present moment and take notice of beauty in small, ordinary interactions. You’re experiencing the world as it is– full of risks and rewards.
How to Train Yourself To Be More Spontaneous
Being spontaneous can be daunting if you’re used to planning and strategizing. But being open to new experiences is totally worth your time and initial discomfort.
Here are some of the practical steps to help you spark spontaneity.
Give Yourself Some Time To Become ‘Free’
If you’re just starting out, give yourself some alone time, free from any responsibility. Allow yourself to do anything you want at the moment. If no idea comes up, you can sit for a while and think. Sometimes that’s all it takes and that’s spontaneous enough by itself.
Or, you can tie your shoelaces, go out, and let your intuition decide to take you on an unplanned journey. Don’t forget to bring your wallet!
Manage Your Time Wisely
Time is our number one asset and it’s always surprising to me how so many of us squander so much of it. Get rid of any procrastination that inhibits you from grabbing opportunities because–oh, right, I need to finish that report. Minimize your screen time and don’t put off tasks you can do right now.
Give yourself some wiggle room so you can cancel a portion or the whole day to do something that just came up. After all, you’re practicing to become more spontaneous to have space for pursuits you really want to do.
Be A ‘Yes Man’
Being a yes man is simply being more open. It’s not about throwing away due diligence when it comes to big decisions. Be a yes man by trying to say yes in your personal life. Maybe saying ‘yes’ to an outing with friends for once or trying the ‘silly’ game your kid asked you to play with them?
Don’t be afraid to welcome ‘spur of the moment’ ideas. Sure, you should always make informed decisions. But if it’s just the ‘nerves’ that holds you back, do it anyway. You can always tell when your hesitation is from discomfort. Chances are, you might enjoy and even discover something new about yourself and about that venture.
When You Do Things, Be Present In The Moment
When you’re finally doing an activity that you don’t usually do, e.g. accepting a new responsibility at work or going on a spontaneous trip, release any guilt or what-ifs. Take a deep breath and plunge in.
Feel it. Allow yourself to be present in the moment so you can recognize the lessons and ideas just waiting to be picked up.
Also, the benefit of immersing yourself in new experiences is that you become braver. You start building courage to dream bigger, to create more memories, to do more.
Understand Which Risk Matters And Which Don’t
Forecasting and planning is always good for sound decision making, of course. They help you avoid or prepare for risks in different areas in life– disaster planning, forecasting demands, or just scheduling your week.
But everyday, everywhere, there’s risk. We can’t stop them all. We can only be open to how we’re going to take it. For us to live fully, we need to know which risks we’re willing to take, which matter and which don’t.
You can talk to your friends who are risk-takers and ask about their perception and experience. What did they regret the most? What are they happy about?
Then have some introspection. List down what scares you and check in with your negative thoughts. What’s keeping you from enacting your ‘wild’ business idea? Do you doubt your capabilities? Are you afraid you might just end up wasting resources?
Or do you hesitate communicating your needs to your partner? Do you just keep it all in because you don’t want stuff to get blown out of proportion?
Get to the root of your fears and try to make sense with them. Ask yourself if it’s going to cost you everything or your peace of mind. If it does, then maybe you can just let it go.
But as Lewis Carroll said, “We only regret the chances we didn’t take.”
Look At The Benefits
Sometimes you just need to look at the donut, not the hole.
Imagine doing that something and the worst doesn’t actually happen? Your novel idea is actually a hit or your partner finally understands you and your relationship, and is more loving than ever.
As I said above, taking on chances and seeing that they don’t turn out the worst gives you courage to do more. It leads to a chain reaction: you take more spontaneous actions that make you even braver to be true to yourself. The result? More exposure to new opportunities you didn’t even know existed.
Switch Things Up
Practice that spontaneity muscle by challenging yourself to do something new every day or switching things up once in a while.
Are you always on the same road for your walks or for driving to work? If you have some time, maybe you can take another route. You can switch from your usual coffee shop to another.
Making changes now and then to the way you work and live your daily life gives you the opportunity to become comfortable with doing new, unfamiliar things. It’s a way of getting out of your comfort zone without interfering with your daily responsibilities.
Fill Up Your List
It’s like planning for spontaneity but not really. In your free time, write down activities you’ve always wanted to try but don’t have the courage or time to start. Or you can Google some new activities you can do near you. You can help local businesses, too!
It doesn’t have to be an outlandish outdoor event either. What new things can you do at home? Move your furniture. Or try a new paint color. Just stay in on the weekend and paint your bedroom! Or go ahead and try hummus!
Spontaneity is Needed For Change
Spontaneity is a superpower that can unlock more of your potential. If you want to become more successful, happier, better, and free, it’s an important trait to have to go with well-structured plans.
You can start embracing spontaneity by making small differences in your daily routine. As you explore more options, you learn more about yourself. You’ll be surprised to see how much you can grow without getting restricted by time, personal beliefs, and more.
- Kipper, D. A., Green, D. J., & Prorak, A. (2010). The relationship among spontaneity, impulsivity, and creativity. Journal of Creativity in Mental Health, 5(1), 39-53. https://doi.org/10.1080/15401381003640866
- Nieß, C., & Zacher, H. (2015). Openness to experience as a predictor and outcome of upward job changes into managerial and professional positions. PloS one, 10(6), e0131115. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0131115