I have always liked the idea of improving myself, setting goals and reaching them and seeing what potential lies inside of me. But I don’t know if others have that same curiosity. I think there’s doubt in peoples’ confidence of their ability to change permanently and therefore they don’t want to waste the effort.
That’s where 30 day challenges come in. They make it all a game. There’s no long term commitment – you only have to try for 30 days. What’s 30 days in the course of your life (especially if it can possibly change it forever)?
This comes from my experience with Lent. I gave up coffee for Lent, which was the hardest thing I’ve ever given up. I felt awful for a few days, dazed for few weeks and finally felt better after about 2 weeks without my daily coffee. Now, Lent is long over and I don’t drink daily coffee. I have it occasionally and when the mood strikes, but not daily. I don’t want to return to that dependence and those flu-like symptoms if I don’t have it.
Would I ever have tried to go without coffee if not for the “safe space” that Lent provides? Probably not. I want that experience year-round. I’ve given up other things in my life and sometimes they come back and sometimes they stay out. I have given up all animal products, TV, facebook and alcohol as examples. Animal products are still out, but TV, facebook and alcohol are back, but in a much reduced capacity. And that’s the beauty! Kicking something out of your life and going without helps you to reset your level and realize just how much you might be overindulging so that when you take it back in, you can adjust it way down as you see fit.
This concept also gives you tremendous mental power over your life. You may have previously felt like your vice has total control over you, but a 30 day challenge to kick it out can be very empowering. 30 days is long enough to notice it’s gone and also to realize it’s something that you can actually do without too much suffering.
30 day challenges don’t need to always be something you’re abstaining from either, you can add stuff in that you want to try committing to, like a workout regimen or another good habit.
Some ideas for 30 day challenges:
- Give up eating animal products (meat, milk, eggs, cheese, butter, honey)
- Give up all social media on your phone (or just the worst offender, whatever that is for you)
- Give up caffeine
- Give up alcohol
- Push-up challenge
- Cold showers
- Intermittent fasting
- Gratitude challenge
- Public speaking
- Drinking more water
- Write and publish something daily
Try something new for 30 days with no commitment. You just might completely changes your life for the better!