The first online challenge I ever signed up for was a 28-day fitness challenge. I’m sure you’ve seen one of this brand’s many posts promoting their online fitness program geared toward women and probably rolled your eyes or got annoyed by the amount of ads showing up in your social media timelines. Well, I downloaded their 28-day fitness eBook and didn’t start the challenge until three months later.
When I finally started, I was hooked and it changed my life for the better. And It’s been the reason behind my obsession with taking part in 30-day challenges since then.
Though the idea may seem foreign, taking part in 30-day challenges of any kind is a great way to get your life together if you feel it’s out of whack. We all want the same thing in life which is to live happy and fulfilling lives, we just go about it differently because we have different interests as different people.
I’m here to tell you to stop getting in your way and try something out of the norm. Challenge yourself to complete challenges and watch it trickle into your everyday life. Here’s how to start.
Make a List of Things You Want to Change About Yourself
For me, I participated in a fitness challenge for pure vanity. It was for my wedding. I needed to lose weight and tone up to look good in my wedding dress and didn’t want to pay a personal trainer because your girl had no more money to give. Reminder: we were paying for a wedding out of pocket! Maybe getting in shape isn’t something you want. Perhaps you want to think clearer, be a better blogger, learn more and would find 30-day meditation, blogging, or book reading challenges to be more your speed. Whatever you don’t like about yourself or think you need to be better at, write it down and find a challenge that caters to improving whatever you’re bad at. Besides taking part in challenges, writing out these things is a great start to knowing what you need to do to get closer to your happy.
Commit to 30-Day Challenges that match your goals
Like I said above, your wants or needs may differ from a challenge you think would be cool to be a part of. I believe for this part, it’s important to be honest with yourself. There have been 30-day challenges I “commit” to taking part in and then five or so days later I get bored then just stop doing whatever I’m supposed to be doing for 30 days. To stick with the 30-day challenges you sign up for, they have to align with your goals and you should enjoy doing it at some point, even look forward to it. You’ll be doing the damn thing for 30-days, might as well at least like doing it.
Make a Commitment to Your Commitment
This is a phrase I’ve used several times on my blog because it’s the truth. I mentioned it during my 30-day NaNoWriMo challenge in which I wrote a novel in 30-days and I believe no matter the challenge you are a part of, this applies. It’s one thing to say you will do something, and it’s another thing to do it. There are a lot of talkers out there who use “one day” and “I’ll do it tomorrow” consistently in their vocabulary. Holding yourself accountable to your promises to yourself takes discipline. Motivation is all good, but it’s nothing if you aren’t a disciplined person. And if you’re breathing, you are capable of becoming a disciplined person. Trust me I know. Once upon a time the word discipline was a trigger for me. Making a commitment to your commitment doesn’t mean it’s contingent on how many of your friends take part either, though that makes everything more fun, right? Really committing to your commitment is reaffirming your word is your bond. Yes boo, it’s that serious.
Be Proactive and Join a Community
One of the most important parts to joining a 30-day challenge is chronicling your journey. Telling people close to you your plans to join a challenge is a great start, but you need to be surrounded by like-minded people, individuals moving toward the same goals you are. They’ll lend support and you can do the same for them. When I started my fitness challenge, I started an Instagram account (@fit_in_thecity) separate from my main one (@samanthagwrites) and followed like-minded women. Online friendships were built and continue to be built as we all move closer to our goals. I’ve watched women become flexible, shed weight, and gain confidence. Don’t take joining a community for granted. It can really change your perspective and keep you focused on your end goal.
I’ll be the first to admit that I am not an open book. I don’t care to be and I prefer to be selective with what I share in my everyday life. But for my fitness journey, specifically my yoga journey, I am very transparent. I’m transparent because I get a real view of where I started from as I scroll through my timeline whenever I feel nostalgic. I don’t pretend to know it all or act like I was born with fitness knowledge. I’m honest about the struggles and the gains, and I’m fine not being great at everything I start. What’s the fun in learning how to do something if you’re an expert from day 1? Also, when you’re transparent, others admire that. Our lives are perfectly curated as is and it becomes very typical and a little fake for us to act like everything is perfect and we’ve got it all figured out. It’s called a journey for a reason, so if the shit is hard, say it is. If you’re dying for a slice of pizza while doing a juice cleanse challenge, say you’re hungry. If you can’t get past the fourth chapter of your novel while taking part in a 30-day novel writing challenge, say so. Sometimes you’ll get great advice to help get you through or may realize that there are others having the same issues you’re having during the challenge and y’all can bond over it. Every little bit counts, you know?
Google is your friend and will be a great guide to helping you find a challenge you might like.
If there is one thing you should take away from this post it’s to get out of your head. Committing to a 30-day online challenge may sound silly, impossible, or you may feel you’re too old to even bother but you should try it anyway. You have nothing to lose.
Look at it this way: you will get old anyway, might as well have something to show for it.