Sunday, July 3, 2011

Are you challenging yourself?

I can remember saying, in a class discussion not all that long ago, that there weren't any blogs that I actually read. My reason - and it honestly wasn't at all meant to be insulting or sarcastic - was that I just didn't care that much what anybody else thought. I was a full-time student and a full-time mom, and half the time I couldn't even formulate my own coherent thoughts, let alone take the time to try to read someone else's.

Of course it wasn't very long after that when I discovered a few blogs that I fell in love with, and started opening up to the idea of giving blogs in general more of a chance. (It turns out that they aren't all just self-serving drivel.) And of course just two semesters later, in a class taught by that very same teacher, I started this blog as one of my projects. (He probably wasn't even aware of the irony, but it definitely wasn't lost on me.)

This has obviously not been the most prolific blog of all time, but that has always been - and still is - ok. (See previous "full-time student and a full-time mom" excuse.) I've told myself a few times that after school was over I would put in an honest effort to blog more... but as we all can plainly see that didn't so much happen as it was just thought about. But then a friend introduced me to the Ultimate Blog Challenge

I read their web site with raised eyebrows, wondering to myself if I could/should/would do it. The thought of going from roughly a post or two a month to a post every day for the entire month of July seemed a bit... I don't know... much. On the other hand, it's called the Ultimate Blog Challenge. Something like that is not meant to let you just keep you doing the same old thing that you've always been doing. 

I know I'm not alone in being fond of the "comfort zone." It's always tempting to stay with the known and just be satisfied. But where is the growth in that? And, if we want to be honest, where is the fun? Yes, it's intimidating. That's kind of the point, I suppose. So as one of my favorite characters on one of my favorite shows likes to say... "Challenge accepted." 

And since challenges are all about learning and growing, it's perfect that I've already learned my first  important lesson from this whole thing. The challenge being that you blog every day in the month of July, of course my schedule was completely booked solid (and I wasn't near my computer) on the first two days of the month. 

But rather than starting the whole thing off feeling like I've already failed, of course I decided to put a more positive spin on it. Because part of the "learning and growing" that goes on with accepting a challenge is figuring out how to also accept it when things don't go exactly according to plan. And since that particular lesson has been one of the hardest for me to learn in life (as just about anyone who knows me personally will tell you) it just gives me all the more reason to continue.

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