The Bright Side Of A 30 Day Challenge

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Photo credit: Robert Barone

“The next 30 days are going to pass whether you like it or not, so why not think about something you have always wanted to try and give it a shot for the next 30 days?”
– Matt Cutts, Google Engineer

I stumbled upon Matt Cutt’s: Try Something New For 30 Days Ted Talk and I probably would have been googling Zappos in no time if it wasn’t for my challenge. I’m participating in a blogathon which requires blogging every day for 30 days, which also coincided with my blog’s launch.

This is day 20 and it hasn’t been easy. I’ve had to deal with a WordPress learning curve and generating a story idea every day. My kids have said I seem a little distracted but that’s a defense mechanism so they’ll leave me alone.

The pursuit of the next blog post is tantamount to any and all household crises. When I started the blogathon I had about five posts ready to go but now I’m working one day at a time – but the best part is that I’m absolutely not giving up even if my kids starve, my house is taken over by the laundry police or my eye twitch becomes permanent.

It’s the kind of determination that Michelle Rogers, my guest blogger yesterday wrote about her turning point and how small, consistent steps made all the difference in her  weight loss journey. It’s also the same kind of resolve that Kimberly Gorman Muto, who I also wrote about this week, committed to unearthing her inner artist.

I even had a Cinderella moment one evening when power went out for about 45 minutes at 11:00 p.m. as I was about to publish my post. In the nick of time, at 11:59 p.m. my post was published.

I couldn’t stop shaking my head as Cutts spoke about his experiments. Here’s what he learned and why I kept nodding my head while watching:

  • Time – “Those next 30 days are going to pass whether you like it or not…” I’ve been starting my blog for a long time. I kept delaying the launch because I was focused on minutia and that negative voice inside my head. The months do fly by and why not try something you’ve always wanted to do? Cutt’s found that instead of the months flying by forgotten they ended up being a lot more memorable.
  • Negative Thoughts – Cutt’s self-confidence increased so he started to explore more ambitious challenges. He went from being inactive to biking to work every day to climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro. I haven’t finished my first challenge but I can tell you that I’m starting to become a different person. That negative voice is being pushed to the side and I may try to write a book one day or at the minimum start pitching more media outlets.
  • Determination – There’s nothing like setting a goal and doing your best to keep it. Sounds obvious, right?

“I stopped setting goals for myself because as a mom, I had become the gatekeeper for everyone else’s goals.”

  • Start Small – I think this is one of the reasons why people give up, they start with Mt. Kilimanjaro first! According to Cutts, small sustainable changes are more likely to stick than large lofty goals and if you don’t believe that, check out Michelle Roger’s story.

I’m not sure what I’ll do next but I can tell you that I’ll set up another challenge for myself and I hope you will too!

Check out Cutt’s Ted Talk here:

[ted id=1183]

 

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