Fresh Start “Open-Ended” Challenge
Beautiful WellGrounded Mama,
Every cell in my body is begging me to get back on track for the spring.
I’m a big believer in aligning your self-care to the season you are in because really, self-care is a WAY of living — and when we live in ways that care for our well-being…different seasons need different ways of caring.
There’s something about spring, more than other seasons, even, that makes me want a more INTENTIONAL reset to get back on track.
But here’s the thing, “challenging” myself around self-care has historically never really worked.
And here’s why:
Most of the time, when we set out to “challenge” ourselves to get back (in shape, on track, eating better, losing weight, exercising more, reflecting more, etc, etc) we set it up as a “closed-ended” challenge for ourselves.
What I mean by closed-ended is that there is one way to win and one way to lose.
Either you complete 30 days straight of your goal, or you lose. Think about it. How you set yourself up really matters.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve wanted to re-establish a healthy habit back into my days so I set out to be very intentional for 30 days to bring it back into my everyday life.
And in the beginning, I’m always rockin’ it. But let’s say around Day 16 I mess up. I forget to drink the water, or can’t fit in the walk, or eat the whole pint of Ben and Jerry’s — whatever.
That one day I don’t meet the challenge…the challenge is over, right? I mean I “lost” at the goal I set out for myself.
So I throw the baby out with the bathwater.
Over the years I saw this SAME pattern happening with HUNDREDS of women I worked with.
So what I began to do is change the LANGUAGE around getting “back on track” with self-care goals.
I’d change it to an OPEN-ENDED challenge.
An open-ended challenge sounds like:
How many days this month can I (fill in the blank)?
Hmmm, I wonder? How many days can I bring in more veggies, get out for a walk, journal in the morning hours, or shut the screens off by 7pm?
Whatever the GOOD thing is that you want to bring into your life….challenge yourself to see how OFTEN you can bring it in for a given period of time.
This immediately accomplishes 2 things:
1. You celebrate all the way —– every day you get a chance for a win.
2. You get to ride through the days you didn’t hit the mark without quitting.
Closed-ended challenges play into that perfectionistic stronghold so many of us struggle with. But open-ended challenges let us start each day anew, knowing the small shifts we make along the way really do matter.
So….wanna do an Open-Ended Self Care Challenge?!
Here’s how I set mine up:
1. Begin on the 1st and go for the duration of the month.
2. Choose 3 self-care practices based on what I need most right now for my own well-being.
3. Set daily goals for these 3 practices.
4. Record daily the ones I’ve been able to accomplish and celebrate all the little successes I’ve had over the month!
If you are up for it…begin today by asking yourself “What do I need MOST right now for my own well-being and self-care?”
Click here to read what MY 3 self-care goals will be for this challenge (and to download some special resources to support you along the way!)
Sending much love and dreams of budding trees,
[…] This article from Lisa Grace Byrne of WellGrounded Life came up in my Facebook feed yesterday. Here Lisa invites us to choose three self-care practices based on what we most need for our own well-being, to set a daily goal for each one and to see how many days in the next 30 we can accomplish the goal. She give some examples in this post, and a creative way to record progress at the end. […]