I made it! I completed six ten-day challenges, and two of the challenges I am still continuing. I can see myself staying with one permanently which is drink a 16 oz. glass of water first thing every morning. I like getting the fresh water before I do anything else.
The other one is no eating out or ordering in, and I'm on day seventeen of that one. Anyone who knows me knows that this one was tough for me. I chose this challenge because I absolutely hate to cook, but I was eating out two to three times a week which added up to a lot of money. So I knew this was really going to be a challenge, and I'm proud of myself for completing it and continuing it.
The first few days of the challenges were the hardest for me, but once I got into a rhythm, it became easier, much like when I set myself a goal to write every night. I've been doing that so long that I can't imagine not doing it now.
Completing a challenge, no matter how small or large, gives you a sense of accomplishment so I'd encourage you to give it a try, even if it's just for three days. Pick something you never thought you could do as one, like I did for not eating out. Really challenge yourself. You'll probably find it easier than you think.
Most challenges are for thirty days. Go thirty days without spending money or without eating out. But the challenge of a thirty day challenge is that it is, well, a challenge. Some of us, like me, need to take our challenges in small increments. Thirty days seems too long which is why a lot of us don't make it to the finish line. And not making it to the finish line can be hard on those of us trying to change.
So I'm focusing on changing my life ten days at a time. I know it takes longer than that to build a habit, but I also know I'll never build a habit if I don't start somewhere. And if I make it through ten days, I'll keep going, depending on whether or not it's really something I want to add to my life.
For instance, one of my new challenges is to listen to or watch a Ted Talk every day. I really enjoy motivational and educational speeches, but I'm not sure if I want to watch one every day forever. So we'll just see how these next ten days work.
I'm starting with three separate ten-day challenges so I don't overload my brain. If I'm feeling too stressed out about it, I'll drop down to two or even one. When I get to the end of the ten days, I'll feel like I accomplished something. And I will have.
Over ten years ago, I challenged myself to write every day. It wasn't about word count; it was about getting words on a page. One day became five which became ten, and before I knew it, I'd written every day for thirty days. Then I kept at it. I have not missed a day of writing in over ten years...even when I was in the hospital. (I had to ask the nurse for a piece of paper and a pen!)
So if you're thinking about undertaking a challenge, but you're just not sure about sticking to it, aim for a bite-sized challenge. Three days or five days even. You might discover that you really enjoy doing what you're challenging yourself to do, and before you know it, it'll become a habit.
I'll let you know how my challenges turn out on August 19th. I'm not guaranteeing I'll make every one, but we'll see!
The world is in turmoil right now, and it's easy to get caught up in watching the news 24/7 and let everything else pass you by. But focusing on goals helps keep me productive, and i don't go stir-crazy! I'm also limiting my social media time, especially Facebook, as too much negativity can dull any progress.
Along with the above, I also wrote thirteen posts for Hidden Remote and began working on a pitch deck for a movie. If you aren't familiar with what those are (as I wasn't until my agent filled me in), you can find out more here. Yesterday, I finished the pitch deck and had another article accepted so I'm right on track for my goals for this year.
I've found that keeping track of my goals like this keeps me accountable. Years and years ago, I had a goal of writing every day. To date, I have kept up with that goal. It's easier now because I'm in the habit of writing every day.
So what you doing to work toward your goals?
At the start of every year, I create a list of goals I want to reach by the end of the year. I did that at the start of 2019 then a couple of weeks ago, I set a new goal—to become a certified financial coach by the end of the year.
I have been helping people with their financial situations for several years now, and I decided I wanted to know more about the subject so I could help them better. I already write a lot about finances and debt on my blog for single women, A Journey of Fives. So as of today, I'm almost halfway through the course, and I'm enjoying it so much I will, most likely, enroll in other financial courses once I'm done.
I've always loved learning, and I usually enroll in one or two classes a year, more if my schedule will allow it. I don't think we should ever stop learning. At present, I'm enrolled in four courses, all of which will help my career as a writer and enable me to help more people.
What goals do you set for yourself? Do you try to continue learning every year?
Every year I set goals rather than resolutions. Goals give me something to work toward while resolutions can be a bit intimidating, especially if you vow to do something every day and end up missing a day. So I set small goals, medium-sized goals, and big goals. I usually try to get the small goals out of the way first and slowly work my way up to the big ones, depending on what they are.
Years ago, when I first started writing goals, I would set deadlines to have my books published. Well, we know that's not always in our control so I changed it to getting the book finished or sending the book to the publisher. Those were goals I could control.
I encourage you to choose five REALLY BIG goals that will change your life like finish your first manuscript, enroll in college, or take the trip to Spain, if you can. Big goals should be big for a reason; they should make you have to push yourself to achieve them. And it really helps to use a planner to keep track of these as you can write each week what you've done to work toward that goal!
Happy setting, and welcome to 2019!
It's hard to believe we're at the midway point for 2017! I'm looking back over my goals for the year to see how many I've achieved and where I've slipped. I'm counting my blessings even while a few foul balls have come my way. (We all have some of those!) Overall, it's been a good six months. Take a look!
Today is Work Like a Dog Day according to Days of the Year (www.daysoftheyear.com). Per the description, you can "give colleagues and the boss an occasion to remember when you turn up early and dig into that work pile with enthusiasm and drive." But what if you, like me, work from home? How do you stay motivated? What keeps your nose to the grind, or do you get distracted by the draw of the television or the nice, comfortable bed you know awaits you?
As for me, my motivation is mostly fueled by caffeine, an overdose of ambition, and the drive to do more with the talent God has given me. I once told a friend that I juggle because I can't imagine not juggling.
So what fuels you?
So we're almost at the end of the month, and I'm looking back at my goal list while muttering to myself. A few things I've accomplished, but others have already fallen by the wayside. But I'm not disappointed. Trying is the hardest part. So now I pick myself back up and give it another go.
On the plus side, the things I have accomplished have made me feel very good. I like to see those check marks in my calendar!
I have decided to start doing a few fun things here and on my Facebook page. Have you liked me there yet? It's www.facebook.com/authorrachelcarrington if you want to look me up. I've always got stuff to give away because I'm a shopping addict! So join me there and here so I can fulfill another one of my goals for 2014!
A New Year always begins with new goals for me. i don't call them resolutions because it sounds too rigid. I keep them easy, simple, and doable.
I want to read more (this is already made easier by the purchase of several of Julia Quinn's books).
I want to send out more manuscripts to publishers. Write more shorts stories and articles because I enjoy the challenge.
Saving money is also on my list of goals. This will be made easier by the 52 week savings challenge. Read more about it here.
Exercising is on the list. Not a surprise. I'm limited so I chose to do Coach Nicole's chair exercises. Here's one. They're not easy even if you are sitting down.
I think my biggest goal of this year is to change my eating in a revolutionary way. Have you heard of Granny's Vital Vittles? It's all about eating real food, not processed stuff. I'm starting slow as the plan allows, but I'm determined to eliminate a lot of the chemicals from my diet, even the "good for you" stuff.
I have some separate private goals, but that's all the ones I'll share publicly. What about you? Any goals you'll share? We can cheer each other on!
My thoughts, experiences, challenges, and goals. Right here. At least once a week or so. Oh, and opinions, too. Those will definitely come in. Join me!