30 Day Challenges

Inspired by Matt Cutts, I’ve periodically challenged myself to do something for 30 days straight. Thus far, these 30 Day Challenges have been eliminations or daily activities.

I appear to be on a hiatus right now. Mostly because I have a project for 2014 of habits instead.


For all of October 2013, I will not consume gluten.

This is made substantially easier by eating most of my meals at the Twitter cafeteria. I wrote a brief blog post about my gluten-free challenge here.

Starting 25 Sept. 2012, before going to bed, I will pause mindfully on my yoga mat.

(Again, a Minimum Enjoyable Action. The minimum here (aside from the yoga mat) is something I can do even if I’m elsewhere. I’m planning to ultimately make the minimum action slightly more, but I want to keep it super-minimal to begin with.)

Starting September 2012, first thing every day, I will put on my running clothes and go outside.

(It’s not healthy to suddenly start running every day, so sometimes I just go outside and stretch. It’s also nice because the pressure is really low: no matter how tired/sore I am, I can do that. No excuses. It’s the Minimum Enjoyable Action, as talked about in this post)

For all of August 2012, I will spend 10 minutes decluttering daily and get rid of at least one possession.

(This idea is from The Power of Less by Leo Babauta.)

July: Rejection Therapy Challenge.

(Find out more here.)

For all of May 2012, I will make myself laugh every day.

(This was a lot of fun. Sometimes I also made others laugh.)

For all 30 days of April 2012, I will not watch online video.

(This was tough, and I accidentally forgot, but I did it successfully even when my friends were pestering me to watch a video. I just listened instead.)

For the 40 days from Feb. 22 until April 1, I won’t eat or drink sugar.

(Why 40 days? My sudden urge to give up sugar came right as lent was about to start, so I figured it went with the spirit of fasting that lent hypothetically embodies. For more, see 40 Days Unsweetened.)

I will meditate twice daily for a total of at least 20 minutes total, from September 1st-30th, 2011.

(I totally failed at this one, because I tried to suddenly do so much. In the future I’ll scale it up minute by minute.)

I will keep a daily dream journal from August 1st-30th, 2011.

(The point for this was to help myself learn to lucid dream, but I didn’t keep up with that after the challenge.)

From July 2 to July 31, 2011, I will write a new poem or song every day.

(I slipped up partway through but still did pretty well. You can read/hear these poems/songs here.)

Have any suggestions for future challenges? Comment below or email me at malcolm@malcolmocean.com.