challenges are a good way to jumpstart change. Setting up a short timeframe can proved a great deal of information about changes we are pondering. And it eases the pressure of a long term commitment. Now, to get the best information the challenge has to be genuine and often one set way outside what our comfort zone is. It has to push our limits. We have to fail even to gain more.

24 hours is a good time restraint in my head. We can make the commitment and know by the same time tomorrow we will know a little more about ourself, and possibly others in our life. Below are listed ten challenges.

image1 – no complaining. This one seems easy enough until you get started. You can go for the gold and include mental complaining or go with the classic and try to not verbalized complaints. Middle ground would be stopping the sighs and eye rolls.

2 – eat only one color of food. I’ve found challenges like this get me to think about eating a bit differently. It brings my awareness back to something that most days I do pretty much on autopilot. Other options would be to cut out meat or bread or foods beginning with the letter “C”.

3 – turn off the tech. There are lots of benefits floating around cyberspace talking about going tech free for lengths of time. Consider this one a chance to find out if you do better with or without the tech.

4 – complete intentional acts of kindness. Hold open doors, by coffee for someone, smile, ask for opinions, take someone to lunch, donate time or resources to a charity, carry out someone’s groceries, and anything else that comes to mind. This one is about an attitude more than anything. Thinking of others rather than self.

5 – breathe. And not those normal shallow breaths. Take deeper breaths during the day. Set a reminder or choose a cue in the environment to remind you to breathe more fully.

6 – don’t yell or argue. Open up those problem solving toolboxes. Try to find creative ways to resolve conflict without raising your voice or browbeating with facts. Disengage from the power struggles you get drawn in to.

7 – tell the truth. Don’t tell lies, no matter how small. Sure, have tact, but be honest. Don’t like something … then say so. Really excited about something then let the world know.

8 – forgive. If they deserve it then forgive them. If they don’t deserve it then forgive them. If they apologize then forgive them. If they have no clue they did anything then forgive them. If it’s something from long ago then forgive them. If it’s you and not them then forgive yourself.

9 – make choices. It can be hard to be decisive. It’s possible someone might not like the choice. Well for one day just make choices. If there is a decision to make between right or left, just pick. Whatever the outcome you can deal with it. Plus most of our choices we agonize over are far from life or death. They usually are between tacos or hamburger and black pants or gray pants.

10 – create something. Make something in a day. Write a piece of flash fiction or draw a picture or build a tower out of blocks or LEGO Bricks or cards. Make dinner or arrange some flowers or paint or whatever. you have 24 hours to create something. Maybe a perspective on your life.

I would love to hear some of your 24 hour challenges or how you do with the ones above.

Thanks as always,

With civility ~ Brian