It’s been a good year – filled with challenges and changes (blogged and otherwise).
Was it worth doing a year of Change Challenges? Yes!
* I enjoyed dreaming up and tackling 52 changes. Some were fun, some were difficult but all were worth doing. It got me into a change mindset and it became easier as the weeks went by. I’ve learnt that change can become a way of life (and a good one too). Of the 52 changes (see the full list below), a whopping 41 have stuck.
* Learning to blog was a challenge in itself and, in all modesty, I think my technical blogging skills improved greatly over the year. As with any new skill, it took time (about 3 hours a week to write, polish and post), practise and experimentation.
* As a private person it was, at first, confronting for me to be so visible. It felt like having my diary made public. I got used to this change and I thought of it as writing for friends rather than anyone out there who happened to Google one of my topics and land on my blog.
* It’s been heartening beyond words to connect with so many people and to get their support and feedback. My Change Challenges have led to all sorts of interesting real world conversations and I’ve loved hearing that it inspired people to do their own change challenges.
What’s next? Lots more changes and maybe another blog………
Thank you for your support!
For sceptics and list-lovers, here the complete list (with links – and in bold for those that have stuck) of all my 52 Change Challenges and an update for each:
Week 1 Giving up coffee – I have a cup of coffee a day thanks to Gwen who sent me Scandanavian research showing the benefit to women of a cup a day for stroke prevention – still also drinking decaf and herbal tea
Week 2 Donating platelets - sadly, I can’t donate blood anymore because it’s considered too risky as I fainted a few hours after a donation
Week 6 Growing lettuce - I now now have a flourishing herb garden
Week 7 Becoming an Apple addict - I’m a stronger fan than ever. Go Apple!
Week 8 Holidaying somewhere new – combining the old and new travel locations will be my ongoing travel philosophy
Week 9 Doing crossword puzzles – I haven’t done one in months
Week 10 Grooming my eyebrows - the mirror reminds me to keep doing this
Week 11 Housesitting – I haven’t done this again but still like the idea
Week 12 Beating the souffle barrier - I no longer fear making souffles and am also no longer in awe of them on restaurants menus
Week 13 Trapeze – getting into the swing – probably my toughest physical challenge and not likely to do this again- but have recommended it to others for nerve wracking fun
Week 14 Relishing opera (thanks to Teddy) – haven’t been again but would (especially if Teddy was there too)
Week 19 Changing within change – a big learning is that it’s much easier to change if one’s used to change
Week 20 Adjusting my posture - another one that requires ongoing vigilance
Week 22 Volunteering at St Vincent’s – amidst continuous change – I’ve changed to another volunteer project at St Vincent’s (writing biographies for palliative care patients)
Week 23 Braving the elements – Stanwell Park Ocean Swim Challenge - I’m doing another ocean swim this weekend
Week 24 Going solo – due to other changes, haven’t done this again – but would be comfortable to do
Week 26 Attending the Royal Easter Show – first time ever – and maybe the last!
Week 27 Power brushing - I love my electric toothbrush and Big Hair brush (though big hair eludes me)
Week 28 Water skiing – not drowning, waving – may be brave enough to give this another go
Week 30 Creating creme brulees – with a blow torch – I’ve become a dab hand with the blow torch
Week 31 Wearing fur (is vintage ok?) – I’m more comfortable wearing it encouraged by the warmth
Week 32 Learning to play bridge – on hold (after failing to progress)
Week 33 Watching thugs at play (aka State of Origin) - likely a one-off experience
Week 34 Living car-less – easy one to do again if needed and maybe permanently one day
Week 35 Lighting fires - I became better at this with practice and I’m all set for next winter
Week 36 Cooking online…..(are cookbooks obsolete?) – a new habit with only a couple of lapses with tearing out irresistible recipes
Week 37 Saying thank you – via snail mail - done regularly onw
Week 38 Breaking my broadsheet habit - I’ve almost totally broken this habit apart from the weekend papers which now feel quite cumbersome to read
Week 40 Overcoming a mental block – without pressure - not that I check the tyres that often, at least I can
Week 41 Saving while spending - forget it…..coupons (apart from my beloved Entertainment book) are not worth the time and money
Week 42 Channeling Cadel – fit or not? - knowing I’m fit is good but I haven’t kept up my training program because (here’s my excuse) I prefer walking, swimming and cycling outdoors
Week 43 Shedding skin – exfoliation frenzy - definitely a regular habit now
Week 45 Conquering the mountain on skis (almost) – I’ll try this one more time before giving up
Week 46 Making yogurt the easy way – I make it at least weekly
Week 47 Wearing a ponytail - I’m striving for more length and looking forward to the ponytail travel challenge
Week 48 Enjoying the moment – practising mindfulness – an ongoing challenge
Week 49 Walking with poles (instead of pole dancing) – I wouldn’t do a big walk without them
Week 50 Finding a bed in a booked out city – a good experience which I’ll repeat
Week 52 Tackling a challenging chore - worth the hassle and will do again
Change always comes bearing gifts. ~Price Pritchett