Sometimes, if you pay close attention, encouragement quietly presents itself.
I was feeling uninspired today. What to write, when to write, who cares if I write, etc. etc. While idly clicking through my inbox I opened an email from a blog I subscribe to but don’t often actually read. (Why I subscribe and don’t read it is for another time). I perked up. One of the posts was “The Top 11 TED Talks for people over 50”. I LOVE TED Talks and I certainly qualify in the age category. So I clicked on the link and one of the talks was Try Something New for 30 Days. Well, hello universe!
In the TED Talk (30 Day Challenge TED Talk) , Matt Cutts described his reasons for doing 30 day challenges (he apparently does them routinely). He wanted to add something to his life, to make his time more memorable, and he wanted to meet a challenge. And I do too.
Sometimes it is more about the challenge, a need to accomplish. I was the person who had to Accomplish (capital A) something on maternity leave. As if recovering from delivery and caring for a newborn weren’t enough, I decided to use my “time off” to paint the molding in our house. Did anyone tell me I was crazy? I don’t remember, but you now know I never got the molding painted.
There was a period in my life when I was a regular runner. I needed to exercise and I enjoyed the “my time” but that wasn’t enough to motivate me. So I signed up for races. And then I ran because I was petrified to be last in a race. I used races as a public forum to motivate my new exercise habit. Public humiliation can be a powerful motivator.
This is different, it’s a challenge, and I am doing something for myself. But as I say that I realize that I did have to add the public pronouncement of my 30 day challenge. I’d like to think it is about having onlookers support me, encourage me, to celebrate in my accomplishments, but I’m not so sure. Perhaps it is again that the fear of public failure keeps me going. Weird, huh?
And looking back, only my husband knew I didn’t get the molding painted – and he knew the idea was crazy from the start.
In case you are interested: Blog Post for the 11 best TED Talks for people over 50