You might not realize it, but you’re challenging yourself every day. Even if you do something you know how to do, like drive your car to work, you’re still trying to get better at it by making fewer mistakes and arriving on time more often. However, some challenges are bigger and better than others – they make you think harder, be more thoughtful, and ultimately be better at what you do. Here are 10 ways to challenge yourself to think better, do better, and be better in no particular order.
1) Set goals that challenge you
- Create a list of your values
- Think of three words that describe you
- Take an online personality test
- Write a list of 10 things you want to do
- Make a bucket list of places you want to visit in the next year 6. Start an online journal where you write one thing every day that makes you happy 7. Identify someone who inspires you and reach out to them
2) Take on new projects
Challenging yourself can be a great way to grow as a person. Here are some ideas on how you can challenge yourself:
-Learn something new. Take up a hobby or learn how to do something that you’ve never done before. It could be as simple as learning how to play an instrument or using different cooking techniques in the kitchen.
-Take on a project that is outside of your comfort zone. Whether it’s starting your own business, moving across the country, or volunteering in another country there are many ways you can take on challenges that will help push you out of your comfort zone and make you feel accomplished! -Volunteer in your community.
3) Learn something new
-Learn a new instrument. -Take a different route to work. -Try listening to podcasts or audiobooks when you run. -Volunteer. -Pick up an old hobby again. -Go on a road trip with no destination in mind and make it up as you go along. -Create a bucket list of things you want to do before you die.
4) Teach someone else
As you grow in your career, it’s important to challenge yourself regularly. Here are 10 ideas for challenging yourself as a thinker, doer, and being:
1) Have more conversations with people who don’t share your values or beliefs. 2) Try a new food every day. 3) Read the New York Times cover-to-cover on Sundays. 4) Write 100 words each day of the week. 5) Start a side project or hobby outside of work. 6) Ask someone out on a date. 7) Tell someone how much they mean to you in person or over the phone. 8) Tell someone they’re wrong when they’re wrong–even if you know that’ll cause conflict.
5) Get out of your comfort zone
Don’t be afraid to try something new. Whether it’s stepping out of your comfort zone or trying a different dish at a restaurant, you should challenge yourself every day. The more comfortable you are with change, the more successful you will become. Plus, that sense of accomplishment is rewarding in itself.
6) Question everything
Challenging yourself is a great way to improve your thinking. You can do this by questioning everything you think, believe or know. It’s important to constantly question what you’re told or read in the news. This will help you make better decisions. If you feel like something just doesn’t seem right, take a step back and question it!
Challenging yourself is also a great way to improve your skills. If you want to get better at something like playing guitar or shooting hoops, challenge yourself by pushing your limits–get out of your comfort zone! Put in an extra hour of practice each day for a month and see how much more advanced you are when that time period is over. Read an educational book on a topic that interests you.
7) Be persistent
Don’t be afraid to challenge yourself with new skills. Whether it’s learning a new language or picking up a new instrument, the more you push yourself outside your comfort zone the better you’ll be in the long run. Challenge yourself by setting goals for yourself that you’re not sure if you can reach. It’s important to stretch your imagination because once we start getting comfortable things tend to stagnate and we don’t grow anymore. After all, isn’t it better to try something and fail than never try at all?
8) Be patient
It’s easy to get frustrated with yourself when you’re not seeing the results you want right away. But don’t give up! One of the reasons it can take time for new habits to become automatic is because your brain needs time to form new neural pathways. It’s worth being patient as these pathways develop. Plus, there are plenty of other ways you can challenge yourself while you wait:
9) Believe in yourself
Believe in yourself. It’s cliché, but it’s true. You must believe in yourself before anyone else will be able to do so. In the words of one of my favorite poets: I’m not afraid of storms, for I’m learning how to sail my ship.
10) Never give up
It’s easy to give up. You know that. When you feel like the weight of the world is on your shoulders or when someone tells you you can’t do this or you’re not good enough, it’s really easy just to say fuck it and walk away. But here’s the thing: if you give up now, then you’re never going to get what you want. It won’t matter how hard you worked if at some point in your journey, when things were tough but maybe not impossible – because they never are – you quit.
If I could tell my younger self anything it would be this: don’t give up. Ever.
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