Motivation Through Challenges
I am not going to lie. My current challenge to write 500 words per day is hard. I have ran into many mental blocks that make getting the words for the day written nothing short from a true challenge. I am sitting in my office nook at day nine after just making it through the mental barriers that were telling me I could write later this evening, I did not have to write, this challenge is stupid and the list goes on.
I find it easier to stay motivated through these times when I can answer one simple question with good logic. Why do I even do these challenges in the first place? It is certainly not to prove something to anyone but myself.
I take on a new 30 day challenge each month. In the case of February my challenge was 28 days, but I have continued meditating each day for at least a few minutes, because of the positive result I got. I guess that is just it. I really never know if something will have a positive impact on my life until I give it a try. Testing something in your life for more than a day will give you an actual result, which is why I have opted to really commit to doing these challenges for a prolonged period of time.
Doing something once is relatively easy when compared to doing it everyday for a whole month. And, a single day does not really produce a visible result. So how do I stay motivated to continue?
With each challenge I know that I am investing in myself. I am proving to myself that I have the courage and perseverance to work through challenging tasks. I am investing my knowledge, wisdom and ability to push through challenging times.
Also, I have a commitment to reach my full potential. By doing the same thing day in and day out I am not going to come even close to that potential. I may find a glimmering light through trying a new thing here and there, but nothing like what I have experienced through these challenges.
The ROI on these challenges is huge and I would not stick with them not knowing that. I have learned more about myself as a result of sticking to a commitment that I set at the beginning of each month than I did in some college classes that lasted three months.
If you are looking for change in your life then start with something small, commit to doing it for an entire month and write about it. Write about why you are doing the challenge at the beginning so when things get hard you can look back and remind yourself of what you are striving toward. Write about how you honestly feel at the beginning and throughout the experience. Is the challenge serving you or are you serving it?
I chose to write 500 words per day out of a desire to get better at writing and speaking. Ten days and 5000 words into this challenge I can honestly say the results are coming to light. I can crank out these articles in 15-20 minutes, add some pretty good flow to them and speak about them in the future.
For some ideas and a framework for your thirty day challenge check out my article called Creating New Opportunities for Your Life.
There are moments and people in life that have a tendency to just drive us nuts. One moment we can be in a complete state of peace and the next yelling at the top of our lungs. We forget to breathe, be grateful and accept our emotions. We react instead of pausing for a few minutes to think about why we are feeling the way we are. Most of the experiences that drive these feelings are really nothing more than molehills that we make into mountains. Seemingly small situations are escalated just because of our perception of how things should be.
For me the situations that cause these feelings of anger, impatience and negative reaction range from the cat meowing consistently to a bike trainer not functioning properly. Both the cat and the trainers functionality are outside of my sphere of control. What I do have complete control over is the way in which I choose to react. I have found that if I react peacefully rather than with anger my feelings in impatience blow over much faster than otherwise.
Now I am no perfect angel, but I have found some tools that actually allow me to work through my impatient urges. These urges drive me to do irrational things like make important decisions in a hurry and yell at those I love. This is no way to express how much you care for others and yourself.
Identify your feelings of itchy impatient monsters creeping up your back, then pause for a moment to identify what you are feeling.
Accept your feelings. They are only a perception of the way things are and the way you want them to be. Knowing that your feelings of irritation and anger will pass helps you accepts they way you are.
Breathe for a moment. Take three deep breaths and think about nothing more than the quality of breathe you are taking. This allows you to slow your mind, nourish your body and become willing to do something rational.
Reflect on why these feelings arose in the first place. Did they come to fruition to warn you of something? Did someone really do something wrong or are you just allowing another persons life path to impact you emotionally?
Respond rationally! After identifying with why you are feeling this way you should be able to respond rationally with love and kindness. Perhaps someone did step on your toes and they need to change the way they treat you. If this is the case then politely share with them why you feelin the way you do. If they respond with anger remember they just failed to use these simple tools that you just employed.
If you feel like yelling back then pause for a moment to run through these steps again. The beautiful thing is that these really work. You can resolve difficulties with peace, love and kindness. There is no need to lose your patience.
Patience is not an easy thing to achieve, but it is a much more peaceful way to flow through life if you will only allow it.
Inspiration Through Words
Writing is truly a transformative tool. It provides us with an experience that cannot really be attained through any other act. There is something magical about putting words to paper, or in this case a document. Your thoughts are shared outside of your mind and ideas become reality. With these words we have the ability to inspire action, transform lives and learn a little more about ourselves.
There is a certain state of mind that one must be in to write truly killer content. I find this head space by focusing in on the single task at hand. In the case of this article my goal is to write 500 words, publish my work and move forward with my day. Focusing in on the directions that my writing could go causes a head spin domino like effect that becomes uncontrollable. This is why I start with a simple list of points I want to hit on in my article and then begin writing.
I will create a book with my work one day. A book that is full of good words. Words that inspire positive action, educate people and make things easier that are seemingly impossible to achieve. I have not yet evolved into the writer that will publish this book, however through constant and never ending improvement I will gain the skills necessary.
My book will break things into easy to follow informative guides for changing your habits, controlling emotions, choosing your own physical destiny, improving your finances, looking at your overall health and so much more. Maybe it will be several books. The book will not be an abundance of words, but rather something that people can cruise through and apply almost immediately. While I love words, I have come to realize that big books take a lot longer to read and digest than small ones. I will also use this book as a platform to share some of my stories.
The stories I choose to share will be about my own life experiences in overcoming unhealthy habits, becoming physically, mentally and spiritually strong, running marathons, rock climbing and adventuring in the outdoors.
You may not have guessed, but not long ago I could hardly write an article to save my life. I disliked reading and the two really go hand in hand. One day I decided that I really wanted to share my life story through words. I wanted to begin learning more about myself than ever before. I wanted to become the best I could be. I set out to do this shortly after the Portland Marathon in 2012.
Since that time I have written quite a few articles about all sorts of different topics on my personal blog. I have learned an abundance of things about myself, shared some really personal stories and really improved as a writer.
If you want to get better at writing there are two simple things you need to make time for each day.
I write to share my adventure. To share my story. To inspire positive change in other peoples live. To inspire positive change in my life.
This is why I continue to write.
Life sometimes gets too routine. We get stuck in patterns of habit that are sometimes not so healthy for us. This is why I have actively cut out several bad things from my lifestyle and inserted more than a handful of good things. There truly is nothing more powerful and magical in our lives then transforming them. This is why I started to create 30 day opportunities.
A 30 day opportunity is as simple as something you are or are not going to be doing in your life for the next 30 days. The best way to look at this is a tool that will change your life, create new experiences and allow for amazing opportunities.
"The beginning of a habit is like an invisible thread, but every time we repeat the act we strengthen the strand, add to it another filament, until it becomes a great cable and binds us irrevocably, thought and act." - Orison Swett Marden
I suggest starting with one new lifestyle change at a time. After 30 days if you feel like the new ritual is simply not of value in your life then throw it out. If you do experience positive change, feel happier and have more energy then why not make this a lifetime habit?
Steps To Creating New Opportunities
My 30 Day Challenges For November:
Ideas For Future
Again, have fun with this. Attach a positive feeling to each of your challenges and they will not seem so hard and daunting.
If you are going to make a commitment to creating a positive opportunity in the next 30 days then please do share it in a comment below.
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