Saturday, February 15, 2014

I Like Some Unusual Things for Unusual Reasons

People often like things because they feel that they should. Some people really do like things and don't know why. In this post, and a few subsequent posts, I am going to mention a few of the more unusual things that I like and the unusual reasons why I like them. I will follow up with more detailed explanations in the future posts. In this post I will just provide some teasers.

I enjoy writing. I write every day in journals. I write weekly blogs. I write endless emails. I write book and article reviews. I write academic research papers. But, writing isn't just about enjoyment. It is about organizing your thoughts, reflecting on your life, and communicating ideas to others.

I enjoy listening to recorded books. I am a very slow reader for some reason and having a short attention span, it is difficult to sit for hours to read a book. But, I listen to books while walking, hiking or driving in the car. And in those situations, I can listen for hours.

I spend a lot of time on the C and O Canal. It is good exercise and an opportunity to enjoy nature. But, it is so much more. It is a place where you can get some perspective on life.

I enjoy jigsaw puzzles. They exercise your cognitive abilities for pattern recognition and spatial thinking. They area flow experience. They can be used as a form of meditation. And, when you finish one, they provide a great level of satisfaction.

I enjoy video games. Lately most of my focus has been on World of Warcraft. Not only is it a great deal of fun, but it provide benefits far beyond just being fun. It sharpens your mind, provides the mental exercise necessary to forestall mental decline with age, and you learn a lot of valuable skills such as strategy, decision making, and problem solving that are useful in other aspects of your life.

Lately, I have discovered and become fascinated with graphic novels. This is one of those things that people will snicker about until they wake up one day and realize they have changed the world in significant ways.

The common thread here is that these are all things that one could enjoy just for the sake of enjoyment. But, when something you enjoy also provides important other benefits as well it becomes a double win.

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