I once knew a man who was fascinated by giraffes, although he had only seen them in books and movies. One day, a friend talked him into going to a wild animal park. He was thrilled when the first animal he saw was a giraffe. It was even more majestic than he had imagined, and he actually got a bit emotional.
Then he came upon a herd of giraffes, and once again, he was in awe. They moved in unison – a truly beautiful sight. As he walked on, he saw more giraffes and more giraffes and…only
giraffes. After about an hour, he left. The joy was gone. He had lost interest in the animal that had fascinated him for so many years.
The moral of the story is this: If we constantly surround ourselves with the same things, even if they are things we love, we eventually lose interest in them, and we lose the joy they once brought us.
When we continually make narrow choices – about the places we go, the people we want to be with, the cultural experiences we seek, the activities we participate in, the food we eat – we limit the joy in our lives. Choosing new and different experiences makes life worth living.
So the next time you’re planning to go somewhere or meet with someone, ask yourself what new experiences and joys might exist on an unfamiliar path. Look past the giraffes and see what else is out there. Who knows…you might just discover that hippos and zebras and monkeys are pretty cool too.