Discworld author Terry Pratchett once wrote, “The trouble with having an open mind, of course, is that people will insist on coming along and trying to put things in it.”
But if you ask me, that’s not such a problem. In fact, that’s the whole point of being open-minded in the first place.
In my experience, open-minded people tend to be more compassionate towards their fellow man, and that just makes them… well, nicer.
Of course, if you’re reading this article then you’re probably already pretty open-minded, and you’re looking for ways to be even more so. Luckily, I’ve got you covered.
Let’s get started.
1) Early rising
They say the early bird catches the worm, and that’s certainly true for open-minded people.
Early birds tend to be more open-minded, at least in more traditional roles such as when they work in office jobs. Perhaps that’s because they’re more awake and less grumpy when they file into work at 9 AM.
That’s not to say that night owls can’t be open-minded too, but a lot of the night owls that I’ve seen are open-minded when it comes to viewpoints as opposed to people.
You’re more likely to find them online talking about how we can benefit from a multicultural society than you are to find them actually taking part in that society.
2) Mindfulness or meditation
Mindfulness is all about appreciating the moment you’re in, often by taking time out of your day to engage with your senses. It’s the equivalent of stopping to smell the roses.
Meditation is often used as a route to mindfulness, but the term normally refers specifically to calming your mind and trying to banish all thoughts.
Either way, most open-minded people practice either mindfulness or meditation at the start of the day.
They say that a healthy body leads to a healthy mind.
That’s true enough in my experience, but people forget to add that a healthy body can also lead to an open mind.
I like to get my exercise from running, and I spend a lot of my running time thinking about things that I’ve seen or read and deciding where I stand on certain issues.
Even if I set out to go for a casual run in the park and to not think about anything in particular, I end up naturally opening my mind.
And because we know that most open-minded people are early risers, we can also make an educated guess that they usually work out in the mornings, too.
4) Nutritious breakfast
They say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and there’s a lot of truth to that.
Eating a healthy, nutritious breakfast will kickstart your metabolism and provide you with the energy you need to start your day with a bang.
Eating breakfast can also help you to boost your intelligence and reduce the risk of suffering from heart disease and strokes.
Open-minded people tend to eat nutritious breakfasts because their curiosity has led to a better understanding of how their bodies work. They go out of their way to eat a healthy breakfast because they know what will happen if they don’t.
5) Plan the day
Open-minded people have an unfair reputation as people who go with the flow, but that’s not the case.
True, they’ll be willing to change their plans or to accept new ideas, but they still tend to have fairly packed schedules. Their open-mindedness has led them to plan out their days so that they can spend as much time doing what they love as they can.
This, of course, includes the mornings, which is why we’re able to write articles just like this one. And if you want to become more open-minded yourself, you’ll want to plan your mornings, too.
6) Learn something new
We know that open-minded people tend to be curious about the world around them, and so it shouldn’t be a surprise to know that they like to learn things.
Many of the most open-minded people that I know go out of their way to learn something new in the mornings, before they start to think about work. They’ll read books or use apps that are designed to teach them new things.
If you want to get started with this, the easiest thing to do is to download a word of the day app. Then you can see whether you can slip that word into your conversations.
7) Connecting with loved ones
Everyone has people they love, and open-minded people are no different.
The real difference here is in the way in which they go out of their way to connect with their loved ones as they start their day. They might ping someone an instant message or phone a parent to check in with them before they head to the office.
And if they’re lucky enough to live with a young family, they’ll devote as much of their mornings as they can to their children before they switch to work mode. Children are inherently open-minded and their parents can learn a lot from them.
8) Mantra setting
The idea behind mantra setting is to create a short sentence or phrase that can be repeated as a way of establishing your intent for the day.
Open-minded people are more likely than most to believe in the power of mantras. They also tend to be goal-setters, and so it makes sense for them to start each day by creating a mantra to see them through it.
There’s also a good chance that open-minded people will have read widely and discovered mantras that other people have come up with. And they’ll be open-minded enough to adopt them for themselves if they know that they’ll come in useful.
9) Random acts of kindness
The idea behind random acts of kindness is to do something nice for someone you don’t know.
The world can be cruel and unkind, and open-minded people know that it doesn’t have to be that way. That’s why they take time out of their day to do nice things for other people.
If we all did a random act of kindness each day, the world would be a better place. And it doesn’t have to be something huge, either. It can be enough just to hold the door for someone or to pick something up after they drop it.
One thing that we ought to note is that even though these traits are generally common to open-minded people, that doesn’t mean that you can’t be open-minded without them.
Ultimately, if you want to be an open-minded person, the best way to start is to go out of your way to be open-minded. It’s a state of mind and a process that you’ll continue to hone throughout your life.