Why Does Change Feel Good?

It’s been a struggle for me to keep up a workout routine.  Even though I have a couch-to-5K schedule to follow, things like vacation and illness throw it off, and before long it’s like I never had a routine at all.  After going to Hawaii and then being sick for a week, I was antsy to get back into running.  I wanted my schedule back, and more than that, I wanted back the sense of better wellness that I’d gotten from running regularly.

Running again felt good.  I used muscles that hadn’t been used in a while, worked up a sweat, and got the most exercise I’d gotten in two weeks.  That felt nice, for obvious reasons.

Making the change to be more active has obvious physical benefits, but the advantages of making other body- and health-related changes are less easily defined.  Body image blogs are constantly urging readers to make little changes and try new things in an effort to discover their unique style and feel better about the way they look.  Working up the nerve to wear colored tights, or even to wear a skirt when you usually wear pants, can lead to a tremendous increase in confidence and happiness.  But what is it about those little changes that feels so nice?

For me, it’s usually the feeling of pure accomplishment.  It’s getting that mental “gold star” or checking something off a list.  It means hey, I did something – something different and out of my comfort zone, and I survived it.  Heck, I might even do it again.

Other times, it’s an outside source, like getting a compliment, that does the trick.  I’ll feel much better about a fashion choice if someone else notices the difference and praises it.  It doesn’t make or break my style, but it feels pretty neat.

Why does change feel good to you?

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4 thoughts on “Why Does Change Feel Good?

  1. Change helps me out because otherwise my life is completely stagnant–while I have 2 jobs and a crazy social life, it’s something that I do *for me* that relies completely on me forcing myself to do something. And I don’t force myself to do anything. And it’s wonderful.

    • Yeah, I’m kinda getting to like that feeling of forcing myself to follow a routine! It’s like “oh hai will-power, nice to finally meet you.”

  2. The biggest change I regularly effect on my body is my hair–I really love changing up the style and color of my hair on a regular basis (and even shaving it all off, haha). I guess I like it so much because it’s a fun way of reinventing my image when I feel stale, and because it’s not a permanent change, so I never have to commit to one thing forever. Plus, I do like surprising people!

    • That’s awesome! I would like to take more risks with my hair, but my hair grows reeeeally slowly, and I’m not sure my workplace would be thrilled if I dyed my hair a wacky color. If there was a disaster, I’d have to live with it for several weeks, or go the Ripley/Sinead O’Connor/recent Mia route. 😉

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