Happy New Year!
2017 is over, and whether you had a great year, or couldn’t wait for it to end, we have a new chapter to look forward to. Yesterday looked a lot like today, and the only thing that really changes is the -18 and taxes, but having this annual reset is a great opportunity for people to make lasting changes and take on new challenges.
Last year I compiled a list of monthly challenges instead of having a ‘New Year’s resolution.’ It worked well, and I successfully completed around 70% of them. This year, I’m doing the same thing, with different challenges!
Below is the list of my 2018 challenges. Please join me if you want to!
January – Handstand Challenge
It’s been a while since I’ve trained seriously. Although the break has been nice, I don’t want to lose the skills I worked so hard to gain. This month, i’ll be focusing on handstands. Form, strength, and technique, to re-adjust my body and center myself for the year.
My specific challenge is: minimum 1 minute handstand a day. minimum handstand drills 3×3 a day. (I always end up doing more once I start, this challenge is just the catalyst)
Please join me! Handstands are great because you can start at any level, and everyone has room to grow. If you have any questions or suggestions on how to adjust this challenge, send me a message.
February – World News Summary
I rarely read the news. I don’t watch tv, I don’t really read the newspaper… I don’t even use apps that curate news articles for you based on your interests. I realized that the majority of the news information I get is from (gasp) Facebook, or from friends and family. That is not ok with me.
If I want to be the kind of person who solves the world’s problems and changes lives, I have to know what’s going on. The challenge is: read and summarize a world news article every day.
Do you have a reliable, unbiased-as-possible news website or source that you trust? Please send it my way.
March – Video Clip A Day
I saw someone doing this last year and I thought it was pretty cool. Take a short video clip a day, even 1 second (I’ll do the highlight of my day if possible, or what my day was like), and compile it into a short video. This is more of a fun/less serious challenge… because of finals 🙂
It will be posted after completion.
April – 100 Pushups and Write Every Day
100 push ups! All at once or spread throughout the day, get them in. In addition to the easier task, the challenge is to write every day.
I have something specific that I’ll be writing about. But you can write about anything. Journaling, brainstorming, reflecting, whatever gets a pen on paper for you (or hands on a keyboard). Not only is writing a skill that can be improved through practice, but it’s also a skill you can lose. Luckily, writing comes in many forms. Find what works for you.
May – Whole 30 (Or Another Nutritional Focus)
It’s around this time, if you really indulged during the holidays (me) or gave up that new year’s resolution already, that it’s a good idea for a health-reset round-two. Also, summer’s just around the bend!
Last year I tried vegan, vegetarian, paleo, sugar-free, etc, etc. This year i’m taking a more holistic approach and trying the famous ‘Whole 30.’
One of my year-long challenges is to make better food choices in general, but this is a great way to get nitty gritty.
June – Gallon Of Water A Day
I do not drink enough water. Some days, I’ll return home at the end of the night and realize that I hadn’t had anything to drink all day. ‘They’ say drinking water is essential. It’s worth a shot. Get ready for many trips to the bathroom.
July – No Alcohol No Drugs
I already don’t ‘do drugs’ so that’s easy. Alcohol is this strange concept lingering over a lot of social situations and cultural traditions. I don’t drink very often anyways, but the pressure to drink, or strange comments that you get when you don’t drink, can be abrasive and surprising. But societal pressure shouldn’t make you do anything, and this month, the challenge is to stay true to a chosen path.
Can you last the whole month?
August – Learn Something New Every Day
It’s almost time to get back to school, a wonderful place where learning and mandatory work get shoved down your throat if you play the role of ‘model student.’ I actually love learning, and everyone has interest when it’s something they care about.
This month, I will learn something new every day, whether it’s a bit of world geography, how particles interact, or if qualia is the same for you as it is for me. I’ll tweet about the best findings, and many of these research studies will likely turn into blog posts.
Any suggestions on interesting topics?
September – Pick A Project And Complete
I start a lot of projects that I never finish. I even wrote a blog post about it awhile ago. Before September starts, i’ll pick a project, and finish it by the end of the month. Have something you’ve been wanting to finish for awhile? Something nagging at the back of your mind?
October – Yes Man
There’s some caveats to this one. Publicly declaring that you’re going to say ‘yes’ to anything that comes your way is dangerous. This ‘Yes Man’ challenge is to say yes to opportunities and experiences that come my way that will take me out of my comfort zone, and even to things that are just silly and fun. I often turn things down because they wouldn’t contribute to my future plans and goals, but living life along the way is part of the journey right?
But remember, do not get taken advantage of. Sometimes the challenge is to say ‘yes’ to saying ‘no.’
November – Wake Up By 8:00 AM
BOOOOOOOOOOO. But a challenge is supposed to be a challenge. I realize that 8am is not actually early for most of the world. However, for a college student often up until 2 am working on various assignments, 8 am is eaaaaarly. At least I’ll make it to the dining hall for coffee.
December – 15 Minutes Meditation Every Evening
I did a similar challenge last year, although it was for 10 minutes in the morning. I didn’t do a great job at this, as waking up and doing something right away is not the easiest thing. I also had to run right when I woke up, leaving little room for tranquil focus.
15 minutes at night is a small commitment, and I’m still searching for that ‘amazing thing’ you gain from meditation that everyone is raving about. will I find it this year?
Some of my goals will span the course of the entire year, daily challenges that will push me to be better.
- Make the best food choice for my body (health, mind, soul) every meal.
- Exercise/be active every day.
- Execute work with quality and excellence – every detail matters, procrastination doesn’t exist.
- Be kind.
This ^ list will likely grow as I find things I’d like to work on.
So that’s it! That’s the lineup for 2018. What challenges will you join me on?
I faced the new year from my dad’s house in Singapore. It was drizzling, and a heavy fog blanketed the city. As I looked out over the balcony, all I could feel was excitement for the future.
Have a great 2018!