Challenge

In an unfamiliar country, getting a bus or plane ticket can be hard. But after practicing a few times, it no longer feels quite so stressful.

Coordinating a family vacation for 10 (even from the comfort of home) is a bit more logistically nightmarish. Maybe still fun and enjoyable because the end result is worth the headache. There’s satisfaction in pulling it off.

Almost every day, we step up to the plate and get something done. Brushing teeth may have been a chore once. Now it’s effortless habit.

When we know the attainable end, and we’ve bought into the why of it all, then the how in-between becomes a solvable problem. We improve at that problem-solving process by doing it over and over.

Some challenges are beneath us. Flipping open the social media tab, swiping on that app, watching the next show. Look out! Meaningful challenge substitutes abound. Will you be proud of it five years later?

Some challenges are above us. Running a marathon, making a million dollars, suddenly becoming patient with that frustrating colleague, writing a novel, landing the perfect job. Will it even be possible in five years?

The trick is to find the sweet spot. Dream big, then break it down. Tackling a large, unclear objective is a recipe for disaster.

It’s not easy to do ten pushups every day. Some folks don’t do the teeth brushing thing. These challenges are not beneath us.

If you’ve really bought into the why of something—learning chinese, playing an instrument, finding a partner—then make yourself a small attainable goal in that direction. Spend ten minutes accomplishing something. Ship. Pilot. Demo. Deliver.

Then smile. You conquered a challenge!

And do it again.


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