Wednesday, July 1, 2009

How to Change your Life in 30 Days

Yesterday wrapped up my first "Month of Living Dangerously" and what a month it was!

Admittedly, my actions over the past few weeks cannot be considered to be potentially harmful by any stretch. However, many of them were intimidating, challenging, or offbeat. More importantly, they were all completely NEW for me. 

In fact, that was exactly the goal-- to get out of my comfort zone, accomplish things I had been putting off, take chances at times, and liberate myself from a self-limiting perception about being an expat living in a foreign country. 

So, wherever you are, if you ever feel stuck in a rut or confined by your situation, why not give this experiment a try? 

Challenge yourself to do a completely NEW thing every day for an entire month. You won't regret the unique perspective you gain about your life, the control over the choices you make, and the enthusiasm you feel every single day. You'll be amazed to find yourself in the most interesting and magical situations too.

So, final thoughts and updates on the last month:

1. I'm happy to report that a little effort goes a long way with others and I made some new friends through Challenge 19 and Challenge 14 . Even some of you! No rekindling of friendship with "Happy Van" yet, but maybe he's busy on tour?

2. I'm no longer intimidated to do anything on my own in Okinawa. I feel comfortable walking into any situation by myself whether it is an Oxygen pod or Balloon store. 

3. In Challenge 23 I learned the secret to losing 5 pounds in 45 minutes.  

4. I reaffirmed my commitment to learning Japanese from Challenge 18 and recognized how lovely and patient Okinawans are with annoying customers.

5. In Challenge 10, I learned the power of speaking up. Our neighbor is no longer abusing the guest parking spot! If something is bugging you, don't hesitate to confront it. (It helps to be polite too.)

6. Finally, I learned (especially for intimidating situations) how to focus my attention on my actions rather than an outcome I can't control.  Simply fulfilling something that you weren't sure you could is a tremendous boost to self-esteem and energy.

***On a final note, I plan to make these new challenges a permanent aspect of my lifestyle (although perhaps not every day). The last month was so much fun, and there's still so much to experience out there-- more strange Japanese food and beauty treatments, Maid Cafes, and best of all, travel! 

So, please continue tuning in a few times a week. The adventures will continue!


Chris and Amy said...

Yay - great wrap up!

Tom D said...

What ever happened to that guy you married? He seems suspiciously absent in these "living dangerously" challenges (which are wonderful and a pleasant diversion to read about every day). Did you leave him in Hawaii? Or are these challenges too much for a Marine to handle?

Mary and Sean said...

yes, I sort of hijacked the site away from Sean. But he will make an appearance again soon... he does refuse to go to the Maid Cafe with me (a little too weird for him) thanks for reading!

Anil said...

I really like this idea. It's easy to get complacent in life and we need to shake it up to really appreciate ourselves and the world around us.

Mary and Sean said...

Thanks! It was a fun month, and there's still so much to experience out there!


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