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I’m addicted to 30 day challenges

I’m addicted to 30 day challenges

Yesterday was Sept. 30, which means yesterday was technically the last day of my post-a-day challenge. For those of you who haven’t followed from the beginning, I made a public promise back in August that I would publish at least one blog post a day for the duration of September. Well, I did it. Pretty much. I actually missed a day or two, but close enough? That’s why I’m posting today, to make up for my misses.

Before I started the month, I knew this compulsion towards thirty-day challenges wasn’t a new one. I’ve taken it upon myself to go thirty days without drinking, without eating sugar, without spending superfluous money. I’ve also tried to do yoga for thirty days in a row, commit to the Whole 30 and write a poem every day for a month.

To be honest, this might be the best I’ve ever done at one of these thirty-day challenges, and I think it’s because it was the most public. I felt like I couldn’t allow myself to fail, because doing that would mean I’d lied to all of you… What can I say, I’m a sucker for approval from the people I care about.

Everything said and done, I learned a few things about myself along the way that I didn’t necessarily anticipate.

Blogging regularly is hard. Really hard. I have a newfound respect for people who blog at least once a day. Once a week even. It takes a lot of time to go through the process of writing and editing and incorporating photographs NOT TO MENTION coming up with something to post about in the first place. I think that was my biggest challenge. I’m the type of person who has always preferred to write deep and long, and this challenge really didn’t let me do that. I found myself grasping at straws some days, and I’m not going to lie, sometimes I felt like I failed at writing something worth reading.

I don’t like exposing my life this much on social media. I’m a naturally private person. It takes me a long time to trust someone and feel safe letting them into my world. Putting my life out there, even the relatively small bits of it that went up on the blog, was terrifying. I constantly worried that my friends thought I’d become some vapid freak who constantly needed to vent/photograph/wax poetic about her life.

When I’m happy, I have a harder time being creative. I have to put a few things on the table for this one. 1) For the first time in a long time, I’m really and truly happy. And even though there are things I want to improve, and goals I’m working towards, I find my life fulfilling for the first time in years. I have a job that I don’t want to run from that keeps me challenged, and relationships that are solid and rewarding. It’s awesome. But it also means I don’t find myself wanting to write as much, which leads to number 2) I cheated a couple of times this month to make the #postaday happen. I took from my own past writing, so I technically didn’t “cheat,” but it still felt like it.

So here I am at the end of thirty days and I think I’m going to take a break for a little while.

Nothing permanent, I still see my blog as an outlet for writing and photos that don’t have a more appropriate place. But I’m excited to recommit some time to my other writing and photography projects, and maybe even to some freelance work. 

Anyone out there have a good suggestion for where a girl can send her anthro-ethno-creative-memoir-travel writing?

xx

-M

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