Friday, May 1, 2020

30 Day Self Improvement Challenge


Aside from the fact that no one knows exactly when life will be returning back to normal, one thing I am certain about is how DETERMINED I am to be a changed woman by then! I desire to use our nation's "Stay-at-home" order as an opportunity to slow down, reassess my priorities, and improve upon my quality of living. I want to work smarter- not harder, to be motivated by health and not wealth, and pursue holiness over "happiness" (because holiness leads to true happiness anyway!) 

Basically, I am ready for my lifestyle to level up. How about you?


Are you up for the challenge?


The moments of forced-rest that I have experienced lately, due to being quarantined, have really been rejuvenating me and have inspired me to pursue a more balanced life! Now is the perfect time for reprioritizing things, for kicking bad habits to the curb, and for establishing new ones that will enhance my quality of living and that can be carried through even to when the daily grind picks back up again. 

Now, I know a lifestyle overhaul doesn't happen overnight, but I wasn't quite sure what route I wanted to go with this undertaking so I decided to first look on Pinterest to see what other people were doing. I saw a lot of people that were doing month-long challenges and I liked that idea; how perfect to do one for this upcoming May! There were lots of inspiring month-long challenges I could have chosen from on Pinterest, but the more I looked into them, the more I realized they were much more demanding, unrealistic, and weight loss oriented then I was looking for. 

I wanted to stay clear of any overly restrictive, carnal-minded, or new-agey plans. I wasn't looking to "empty out my brain" in any sort of way or to start extensively tracking my habits. I'm not all about record-keeping, and if I have learned anything from my past struggling with an eating disorder, it's that nothing good ever comes out of micro-managing. Let's leave that to God. I knew if I was going to start a month-long plan and commit to it then it would have to be flexible, undemanding, and require that lifestyle adjustments be made only in subtle gradual steps, because that is just how I roll...


So I decided to come up with my own!


 
    

After some thought, I decided I really wanted this 30-Day Self Improvement Challenge to revolve around self-care, self-love, and self-discipline. I know at first this might sound "SELF-ish" to some of you, but in truth, doesn't every human need it? Don't get me wrong! I know the bible eludes to Christians being called to lead lives of selflessness and not selfishness (1 Corinthians 13: 5, Matthew 10:39, 2 Timothy 3:1-5) but let's not overlook the Fourth Commandment which also calls us to set aside time for rest from our work. There are numerous evidences in the bible encouraging and obligating Christians to rest and self-care! Even Jesus himself would steal away to quiet, lonely places for rest, to tend to his needs, and to meet with his Father in prayer. 
 
I know it is easy for some people to prioritize self-care but, not me! Honestly, up until now, the idea of self-care and even the thought of investing anything in myself would make me feel uneasy. Can anyone relate? Well, it is time to change that! Surely we can learn from the many biblical examples on how to nurture and care for ourselves without dethroning God from our hearts or turning ourselves in our own idols. The following articles really helped me to adjust my mindset regarding self-care. If you would like more of an understanding of where I am coming from with this challenge then check out the articles below, and then let's get into it!  

-Biblical Foundations of Self Care

-What The Bible Says About Self Care




  30 - Day   Self  Improvement  Challenge   



The Guidelines: 

- It is recommended you start each of your 30 days off in prayer asking the Lord either for strength and discipline to accomplish your challenge for that day and/or for his purpose to be revealed in it.

- Start with one challenge and add a new one each day until you have completed all thirty.

- Have the freedom to choose whether you would like to continue daily implementing each challenge, turning them into habits, or if you would like for any one challenge to be practiced only once. Not all prompts are necessarily practical for being done daily.

- The challenges are simple and somewhat vague so feel free to elaborate on them as much as you'd like and create your own parameters. 

-You do not have to go in order. Complete the challenges in whatever order you wish.

I hope you enjoy these prompts! Obviously, they are curated to my priorities and preferences, but I think you will find them to be a healthy mix of challenge and ease, effective for reshaping us all into better, happier, and truer versions of who we want to be!


Self Love -


“You can't pour from an empty cup.” 
~ Unknown

  • Unleash your potential and pursue a new skillset

  • Do something you love and have no reason or purpose attached to it

  • Buy yourself a gift

  • Take a selfie that you're proud of

  • Have dinner with your family

  • Bless someone with a random act of kindness

  • Prepare a healthy meal you are proud of and share it with a friend

  •  Set a personal morning and night routine

  • Look the part

  • Set goals- realistic ones



Self Care -


“True self-care is not bath salts and chocolate cake, it's making the choice to build a life you don't need to escape from” 
~ Brianna Wiest (Elizabethtown College Graduate and now Renowned Writer) 

  • Go to bed before midnight

  • Unplug

  • Write a list of things you're grateful for

  • Slow down, relax, and enjoy a hot drink

  • Pray and/or Journal

  • Practice tasting and listening. Eat sitting in silence with no multitasking or distraction.

  • Declutter something  ( i.e. Device, Closet, under the bathroom sink, etc. )

  • Watch less TV

  • Make your to-do list shorter by removing tasks you don't want to do

  • Get outside



Self Discipline -


“God did not give us a Spirit of timidity, but a Spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline” 
2 Timothy 1:7
  • Meal prep

  • Make drinking water routine

  • Make your bed in the morning

  • Eat three meals a day 

  • Memorize a bible verse

  • Read Bible

  • Fill half your plate with veggies at mealtime

  • Wash dishes once immediately after your done eating

  • Regulate sleeping patterns. Set a goal! 
i.e. 1) "I will get __ hours of sleep" or 2) I will go to bed at __ o'clock and rise at __ o'clock.

  • Eat one of a snack and put the rest away










__________________________


One thing that I, this single young lady living alone, has found to be a challenge is having accountability, which is why I have chosen to publicly share with you about this lifestyle change I am pursuing. I want to make this a month-long blog series where I  1) can share this Self Improvement Challenge with you believing that many people can benefit and 2) so I can frequently post public updates of my progress as a form of accountability for me, and motivation for everybody else. We are not just after behavioral modification but long-lasting lifestyle change! Will you consider joining me in the challenge? The more the merrier!

Here we go!!!!!!





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2 comments:

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