2020 was a relatively stable year for me. It wasn’t my best year, but it definitely wasn’t my worst. And if anything, it was better than the two years prior to that. Admittedly, I didn’t achieve much, but it went a lot better than I expected despite the pandemic still going on here in the United States.
In 2018/19, I didn’t use a planner or an agenda. I kept reminders of my appointments on my phone’s calendar app and I’d keep notes in my Evernote app. But this year, I wanted to try using a planner again just to see if it helps me in any way.
I bought my planner from Five Below. There’s a note page in the beginning followed by monthly calendars. Each monthly calendar is followed by a page where you can write lists, notes, events and priorities. And then after all that, there are weekly spreads. After each spread is a page to write more lists, notes, priorities, plan for the upcoming week, and a weekly habit tracker. There are a few more blank pages at the end followed by stickers that you can use to remind you of days when you have appointments, birthdays, lunches, etc. I wasn’t sure exactly what I was looking for when searching for a planner, but this seemed good for me.
At first, I wasn’t really sure what to write in my planner. So, I marked important events/appointments. I wrote a list of states I’ve traveled to, though I’m not really sure why since this will probably be an odd year to travel. And today, I wrote a list of possible goals I could work on. I came up with more than I expected actually. And, I didn’t really create stretch goals. I tried to keep them reasonable, something that I felt like I could easily achieve. For example, I read 3 books last year (towards the end of the year, and one book was really short). I haven’t really kept up with the habit of reading, so I thought 5 books seemed achievable.
Here are the list of goals I came up with:
– See what it’s like being off meds completely and continue if sustainable.
– Consistent body weight of under 150 lbs.
– $1K+/month in passive income through music streaming/downloads.
– One year in Conscious Growth Club.
– Read 5 books.
– Grow my one Instagram account to over 10K followers.
– Release 2 more songs on Spotify.
– Finish Success Triggers, an online course.
– Finish DAI, a webinar series on living an abundant life.
The goals I came up with are within the scope of the current circumstances I inhabit. I have other goals in mind, but I’m not sure if I’ll achieve them this year. For example, I would like to move out to someplace with relatively warmer climate. I would like to lose weight, but I’ve been consistently gaining over the past 3+ years while being on antipsychotics. So, even losing 5 lbs this year would be amazing for me.
I thought about learning another foreign language, or continuing to learn Korean. But, I don’t know if I’m really interested in that. I did purchase a cheap Udemy course on Spanish, but I’ve only dabbled into it here and there. I’m not entirely opposed to learning, just kind of on the fence about it.
I thought about doing more 30-day trials of various habits. One idea would be to make music every day for X amount of time with the goal of coming out with a song at the end. Another trial would be, if I find myself drawn to the idea again, to spend 5 minutes learning a foreign language. I mean, it is only 5 minutes, so it wouldn’t be so hard.
This month, I was actually going to hula hoop 5 minutes a day. Unfortunately, I could only last 30 seconds the first day because it hurt more than I expected. I used a weighted hula hoop, that’s why. And, I haven’t hula hooped in forever. However, I’m tracking it as a habit to see if I can build up to 5 minutes. I haven’t been doing it every day though after realizing how painful it is starting off. 😅 I mean, that happens. Sometimes, you have to reject an idea when it doesn’t go as planned.
I want to do more 30-day trials this upcoming year. It will take me some more brainstorming to come up with some good ideas. I could even repeat previous 30-day trials such as blogging every day or reading books every day. I just thought it’d be more interesting to try new habits.
Steve Pavlina did a few 365-day challenges. He exercised every day for 365 days, and he blogged every day for over 365 days. He said it serves as a positive reference point. It sculpts your character. I’m not even used to 30-day trials, so I think I’ll hold off a few more years before I attempt a meaningful 365-day challenge. It’d be interesting to try one time though.
Beyond 2021 (after COVID-19 subsides), I thought about traveling to each state in the United States. I’ve been to 19 of them for sure. Though, some states I just stopped in for maybe an hour before moving on to the next state (such as when I went by bus to Florida with family for a cousin’s engagement). I want to spend at least a week in each state. That’s achievable in a year, though I thought I’d want time in between to just chill at home. So, I thought in the future, I could achieve this goal within 2 years. I imagined vlogging/blogging about it or sharing pictures to capture the experience. Maybe I would go with a friend or with family.
I don’t know about this year, but eventually I would like to try to become vegetarian again and then even vegan. I stopped just because I thought maybe I’d stop hearing voices if I ate animal products again. I thought maybe I was missing something. But you know, it’s been over a year of me eating meat again, so that definitely did nothing for me other than blending in with my family more. These things happen when you get sick, so I’m trying not to be hard on myself. But, I’m realizing that I don’t have a real reason for eating meat other than it just feels convenient now. The reason I say I want to work on this goal beyond 2021 is because hopefully by then, I’ll have moved out and it’ll be much easier to work on as a goal living by myself vs. living with other meat-eaters.
I thought about writing a book a few months back, but I’m not really sure about the idea now. I could write about my life experience with hearing voices / being possessed, whatever you would like to call it. Maybe I could do this in November with NaNoWriMo. They challenge you to write a novel, but I could just write a non-fiction. I’ll hold off from the idea for now.
I think once I join Conscious Growth Club, maybe I’ll be able to come up with some more aligned goals. I was briefly in CGC back in 2017 when it started, and I opening myself up to new ideas I never thought of before. I had to quit shortly after unfortunately because that was the year I became “sick”. But now that I’m feeling relatively stable, I’d love to give it a shot again and see what I could learn.
I think buying the $5 planner was worthwhile. Right now, I have a tab open for Success Triggers. So after I publish this blog post and drink some water, I’ll watch the next video and review the study questions. I only have 9 more lessons to go, so if I continue doing this every two days, I can finish by the end of the month. And then finally, I’ll know if it was helpful or not.
I think if COVID-19 subsides by this year, I’d like to travel downtown and try going to a new place once every week with one of my friends. I was doing this at the beginning of the year. My friend and I went to Reading Terminal, then Chinatown, and then suddenly we heard the news about COVID-19 and we cancelled our plans. But if things turn around, I’d like to visit as many places as I can downtown.
Anyway, those are my plans for 2021. It’s not anything crazy. Nothing super ambitious (at least I don’t think so). Just simple goals, aligned with what matters to me, and that will benefit me both in the short-term and long-term. Most of my goals are experiential in nature. I don’t know if I’ll have materialistic goals this year since I’m trying to build up my assets first. Maybe in the future, I’ll have a goal of buying a car or buying a house. But, I don’t see a real need for it now.
2020 was a relatively stable year for me. It wasn’t my best year, but it definitely wasn’t my worst. And if anything, it was better than the two years prior to that. Admittedly, I didn’t achieve much, but it went a lot better than I expected despite the pandemic still going on here in the United States.
Recently, I completed my challenge of reading 20 pages or more of books every day for 30 days. It wasn’t always easy to stick to the challenge, but I made it through. I’m not going to mention any particular books I’ve read, because I don’t really recommend them. They were just okay.
The first week was fairly easy. I used a tablet. I chose a book that I thought about reading for a while, and I guess because of my curiosity, I was able to read a fair chunk of the book in the first week. Each chapter was roughly 15 pages. So, I would read two chapters every evening usually. I figured it would be better to complete a chapter rather than read a third of the way through and then have to refresh my memory of what I read.
By the second week, I was getting bored with the book. I thought I’d find some interesting insights by then, but the story seemed to be dragging for me. So, I’d read one chapter, and then would switch to another book to finish up my 20 or so pages.
Eventually, I finished the first book (thank God). I mean, it wasn’t a bad book, but it wasn’t as great as all the hype I’ve heard about it. And, I was just glad I could finally say I’ve read it, and could decide whether it was good, okay, or just plain bad.
The second book was more interesting to me. It was a self-help book. I didn’t really learn anything new about myself per se, but I thought some of the exercises in the book could help me in the future if I ever decide to embark on ambitious goals or dreams again. It helps you solidify plans and take action. And also, the chapters were longer, so I could finish my goal of reading 20 pages easily by just reading one chapter. So, that was a relief.
And then eventually, I started on my third book. There was one particular day that was stressful for me. I was feeling tired earlier in the evening, but I didn’t want to go to sleep yet. I knew I had to finish reading 20 pages. I really struggled this day. As some of you know, I experience something like hearing voices, but more intense. Basically, the voice kept distracting me from the text. I would read a sentence, and not even comprehend it. And at one point, I was reading each word one at a time, really emphasizing it in my head. But the next second, I would literally forget the last word and would not correlate any connection between the words. It was horrible.
But still, I didn’t want to fail just because the voice was getting in the way. So, I soldiered through. I hardly understood the text, but I kept going and finished the 20 pages anyway. And no, I didn’t go back to re-read. I don’t really find that necessary, unless you’re studying something, or unless you think that you will gain some valuable insights.
Speaking of not comprehending the text, there were some times when I would read the first book (an autobiography) and would either zone out or just not really absorb what I was reading. I didn’t go back to re-read those parts either, for the most part, unless I felt like I missed something interesting. I like to just power through and move forward. If it’s a text I really enjoyed, I might re-read it. When I just continue reading the next thing, I feel like it might teach my brain to focus and if it misses something, oh well. Maybe that’s not how the brain works… But anyway, that’s just how I read. I’ve heard others advise something similar, of not going back to re-read something, but just to move on.
After the 30-day reading challenge, I think I read the very next day, and then missed like two days of reading. The first day was because my hearing voices experience felt intense and I didn’t really feel in the mood to try to concentrate on reading. So, I didn’t push myself. The next day was Thanksgiving and we were out, so I was tired and didn’t feel like reading. I thought this was strange because I thought the habit would stick, right? Why wasn’t I in the mood, even if I was tired? Like, I didn’t even have a thought of, “Ooh, maybe I should read, even just a little bit.”
Well, I guess it had to do with the tiredness because the next day (Black Friday), I felt the urge to read. I felt pretty stable, not tired or overwhelmed by voices. It’s still too early to tell the overall effects of this reading habit and what it has done for me after, but I’m hoping it’s like a habitual urge or something. Does that make sense? I mean, I just hope that I feel more inclined to read than to just play games or to just watch videos in the evenings.
I’ve mentioned this before, how if I could re-do the challenge, I would read less pages, maybe 10 or 15. Even 15 is ambitious, considering I was barely reading a book a year. 5 pages is an easy goal. Maybe that would have been nice. Though, I did finish 2 books within the 30 days by setting a higher target. I don’t even think I would have finished a single book if the target was a measly 5 pages. I might have just gotten bored with the first book and abandoned it altogether. But because I was reading at least 20 pages a day, I thought, “Well, I might as well finish another chapter.”
I’m not officially doing another 30-day or any kind of challenge for reading. But, I think on days when I’m doing fairly well, or even if I’m feeling a little tired or overwhelmed by voices, I can set a soft goal of reading 5 pages a day. It’s not a lot to commit to. I remember pushing through, struggling to understand what I was reading when the voice particularly distressed me one day. So, I think it will help me build up strength and power through, doing a task despite how I’m feeling. And, maybe it will teach the voice, “I’m not gonna give in just because you’re acting out.” I think of the voice as a child. So, maybe reading like this every day despite how it acts will discipline it. That’s my wishful thinking.
I’m not a disciplined person or anything when it comes to these 30-day trials or challenges. I try to make them as simple as possible. I actually tried to tag coloring to my reading habit, which I did do successfully for I believe 24 or 25 days in a row. But then, I had a bad day of just feeling tired and overwhelmed by the voice the next couple days (after finishing reading for 30 days). I added coloring days into my challenge, so I thought I’d spend a few extra days reading and coloring together. It didn’t pan out that way. I should have just stuck to reading. That was me not keeping things simple, which I should have done.
I recommend, even if you think you can do more, keep a baseline. Don’t push yourself to do more. Don’t tack on more goals needlessly. I thought I was being clever by planning out evening activities to distract me from hearing voices. But, it became a checklist of things to do in the evening before sleeping. And, it kind of took the fun out of those two activities (reading and coloring). I think it’s better to stick to one goal or one habit at a time. Because then, even if it doesn’t seem fun in the moment, you eventually grow to enjoy it or learn more about it or just naturally do it anyway. But when you’re juggling two or more goals, you never fully focus on doing your best with just one. Eventually, you could build up to do more. But when you’re first starting off, it’s better to choose one goal to focus on.
I was trying to read every day as a coping skill, and also I guess as something “productive” to do. And honestly, it worked pretty well for me. The voice didn’t bother me most days. Though, the voice still bothered me when I was tired. In my head, I’m thinking, “I don’t want to fail my goal.” But, the voice will play devil’s advocate and say, “Sleep is a priority!” I hate when the voice tries to justify doing things differently. Neither option is wrong per se, but if I want to read, let me read in peace. I take a while to fall asleep anyway, even when I’m tired, so I might as well accomplish my goal. That’s my line of thinking.
I want to do more of these 30-day trials or challenges so that I can build up some discipline, and also assert my power over the voice. I want to show it, “I’m gonna do this thing, and whether you agree or not, it’s gonna happen.” I’m so tired of the voice influencing me just because I don’t want to deal with it. It’s my body, my mind, let me do what I want.
Honestly, I don’t really feel accomplished after reading for 30 days. I mean, it is something because I have had trouble sticking to habits and goals in the past. And, I finally completed an intentional 30-day challenge. I feel satisfied that I read a couple of books and will probably finish one more by the end of the year. But, it’s not anything great. I don’t feel elated or surprised. I’m more so like, “Yeah, that’s a thing I did.”
I am glad that the voice did, for the most part of this challenge, calm down in the evenings. Though now the challenge is officially over, it tries to convince me that I don’t have to read. And yeah, it’s true, I don’t have to read, but I still want to read. I still want to have a long-time habit of reading, so that I can finish reading all those books I was curious about or will be curious about in the future.
December is approaching soon, and I don’t yet have a 30-day challenge set in stone. Maybe I will research a few ideas. I did think about writing a book about myself and my experiences with hearing voices, so I thought of doing something like NaNoWriMo but for non-fiction and in a different month. I thought though that maybe I should give myself more time to plan it out. Some other 30-day trial ideas include some form of exercise, practicing piano again, producing music, livestreaming, drinking more water, and blogging (again, because I did do this last August to September, but it’s no longer on the web). I’m not really leaning toward a particular goal. I do want to do something though.
As I’ve been going on with my 30-day reading challenge and have been keeping up with Steve Pavlina’s NaNoWriMo challenge, I’ve been thinking more about writing a book of my own. I hesitate to start it early or to make it too challenging. But, it’s been a goal of mine for years to write a book. Just over time, my ideas on what I should write have changed.
Currently, I’m thinking of writing about my life experiences with and after having psychosis. I don’t know how much of the past I’ll really include. I think my focus will be on how I’ve handled the challenges of dealing with psychosis when it first happened and all the changes it brought since then. When I compare my life from after psychosis to before, they almost feel like complete different worlds in terms of the way I’ve operated. I want to focus on what’s relevant to me now. So, I have a general idea of what I’ll write.
Writers usually set some sort of goal to write a certain amount of words or pages per day. I’m not sure when exactly I’ll set aside 30 days to write, but I thought I could write 1000 words per day. Though, then I wondered if this would be too ambitious given my current difficulties in keeping up with my reading challenge. I thought 1000 words was achievable because of how much I write in my blog posts. But, maybe writing for a book would be different. So, I thought maybe 500 words would suffice. It’s little enough that I can free write that much, but big enough that I would have 15000+ words by the end of the 30 days. That would be a significant chunk for a book. The only problem is if I want to guarantee that it’s longer, then I’d have to continue writing beyond the 30 days. But I guess after 30 days, it would be more ingrained in me to continue writing, right?
I thought about self-publishing versus traditional publishing. On one hand, traditional publishers, especially if they’re focused on mental health-related books, can help me reach a wider audience. Though, I might not make much money this way, especially as a new author (well, if you don’t count the short eBooks I’ve published on Amazon).
With self-publishing, there’s the well-known Amazon KDP. However, they take a large commission (30% for eBooks priced $2.99 – $9.99 and 65% for books priced outside of this range, not including the small fee for each time someone downloads an eBook based on its file size). So, I looked into other options.
One idea is to sell direct. I’ve been looking into PayHip. I haven’t tried it out yet as I do not have a digital product prepared. But from what I’ve read, you don’t have to pay any monthly or annual fee to use it, and they only take 5% of your sales. Plus, you can set your own price. I thought it’s worth a try. I’ve seen other YouTuber authors use similar services to sell their own eBooks, and they don’t always have a large subscriber base either. So, maybe it would work for me.
I was watching a YouTube video last night about how this one guy advertised his book and made about a $300 net loss. But then, he ended up converting those readers into $100,000 in other digital product sales and coaching calls and coaching program sales. So then, I thought I could set up something similar. I might add a coaching service to my website for example. I would try to start something simple, something that I could easily implement and build up from there.
I have a few different purposes with writing a book. One, it would help me to reflect and understand my experiences better. So in a way, it’d be kind of therapeutic. Two, I’d connect to and possibly help others who are either going through a similar experience themselves or are curious about these topics. Three, I’d create another passive income stream for myself, And four, there’s the possibility that this could open up other opportunities for me.
The part that I’m concerned about with writing this book is the potential criticism or ridicule I’ll receive. I think I can generally handle it. I have dealt with negativity when I started a body hair positive Instagram. For the most part, I get a lot of positive feedback. But sometimes, there are those who are plain ignorant or stupid (that’s how I label them). So, I guess if anything, I’ll just be more so annoyed/angry at the negativity then fearful or sad. When people spew their idiocracy, it usually has less to do with us and more to do with their twisted beliefs.
Ideally, I’d find a way to redirect that anger into something more productive. I’m reminded of Earthling Ed, a vegan activist who can get his views across without sounding crude or demeaning. Like if someone asks “but where do you get your protein”, which is sometimes considered to be a stupid question in the vegan community, he calmly suggests sources of protein in plant-based foods rather than rolling his eyes. I’d like to develop this kind of mindset myself.
So as you can see, I’m still in the process of planning how I’ll write the book and how I’ll publish it. This is a goal I’d like to reach before I turn 30. There’s no specific reason other than giving myself a deadline to accomplish my goal and make it a reality.
I think that the journey of writing the book will be enjoyable in itself. It’s like writing a blog post, but lengthier. I feel so relaxed and thoughtful when I write, especially when I type. And then, I enjoy going back and reading what I wrote in the past. It’s interesting to compare your past and present, and to track a moment in time.
I will probably hold off from writing my first draft until next year, 2021. I’m thinking about embarking on a different 30-day challenge (or well, trial) for the month of December. I want to build the momentum of completing 30-day trials so that when I get down to writing, I will actually commit to the 30 days. I don’t want to stop in between and give up. I want to ensure its success.
I know a few people personally who have published books of their own. And honestly, some of them are not even the type to write. Some of them have never even written anything online in the past. So if they could do it, then I certainly can with my writing experiences.
I’ve always wanted to publish a book, one that would do very well or be impactful in some way. I always thought it was a big goal. I have self-published a few books already, just to experiment with passive income. I took down two titles, one which was created out of uncopyrighted material from other bloggers, and another which was based off an old blog post I wrote. The last one, which I’ve kept up, was a short book with 100 beginner/intermediate Korean phrases/sentences. It sells maybe one copy per month. I didn’t put too much effort into it, in terms of the writing or promotion. If anything, I’d like to revise it. But, I’m not particularly invested in the idea.
I’ve had many ideas for books over the years. When I was younger, I thought about publishing a fictional story. Post-college, I leaned more into non-fiction.
These days, I think about writing a book about my experiences over the past three years or so, specifically about life with and after psychosis. I’ve debated about it. On one hand, I want to help others who have experienced something similar and educate those who know little about it. On the other hand, I wonder how much I should actually share. There’s some details that may be important, but I feel embarrassed to share. Though, there’s probably many authors who have felt the same. They probably skimmed over the details or just dove straight into what they wanted to share.
Recently, Steve Pavlina started writing about his participation in NaNoWriMo, which is an organization that promotes this event where you write 50,000 words in the month of November for a novel. At the time, I already planned to read for the month. And also, I didn’t have an interest in writing a novel. However, I did think about how I wanted to write a non-fiction.
I don’t really talk about my experiences with psychosis online. I mean, I’ve mentioned hearing voices. I’ve talked about mental health and coping skills. But, I never actually explained to strangers or even friends on the internet about what was going through my mind when I was experiencing psychosis. I never talked about the ups and the downs and how it affected my mindset.
I wondered if now is the right time to draft the book. I guess it’s never too early, technically. It’s better to document things early, so that you can always look back and see where you were. But when I think of a title like “Life After Psychosis” (the current title I’m thinking about), I feel like I should have accomplished more. I feel like I should be more stable, more independent, etc. But then again, this is real life, not fantasy. Sure, maybe life would look much different in a year or two, or even five years from now. But, this is my life now. This is my reality. This is my experience. I shouldn’t dismiss that.
I don’t want to dive straight into writing. I think I’d like to research it more. And also, I’d like to dedicate a 30-day challenge to it, writing at least 1000 words per day. Right now, I’m focused on my reading challenge (and my “coloring” challenge, if that counts). I also have other 30-day challenge ideas such as doing an Instagram Live each day, exercising daily (something short and simple), and trying various methods for improving my sleep (30 days to better sleep challenge). I’m not in a rush to write the book. Though, it’s definitely something I’d like to accomplish, hopefully before the time I hit 30. (Wow, 30-day challenge before 30! 😆)
I was thinking about going the self-published route. Though, working with a mental health book publisher wouldn’t be a bad idea. They’d definitely know how to market better. I’m not doubting my abilities, but for my first book, the publishing route might be nicer. I’m open to either of these options. I’d like it if it reached a wide audience though.
This would be the first time that I’d be writing something so long that is my own original content. I mean, I’ve written plenty of blog posts in the past. But, a book typically requires structure and organization. It requires more planning so that it will be cohesive and simple to read.
I remember writing fan fictions in the past. I never really organized them well. I just started with the story and went in sequential order, adding chapter by chapter. I never finished the stories, though. And, I couldn’t just jump ahead or go back. I had to continue where I left off, because I was publishing it online and my readers were expecting that. If I wrote it all beforehand, which I never thought of before, then I could have waited to publish it after I finished.
I think if I write this book, I’ll just write whatever ideas come to mind, similar to how I write a blog post. I’ll worry about the editing later. I have a few friends who might be able to help with that too. So, I don’t have to go it alone.
So, writing a book is on my bucket list. I didn’t really have a bucket list for the past two years because it was hard for me to accomplish goals. But recently, I’ve been becoming better at it.
I also think that because I’ve been getting back into blogging, I think of writing more. I think about having more of an impact through my writing. I think about reaching a wider audience of readers. I think about how I can help. I think about how other books have helped me in different ways, or have sparked something in me. And I think, “I want to do that too!”
I don’t know when I’ll start this goal, but now that I’m publicly announced it, you all know! Feel free to share your advice or your encouragement. I’m not going to work on publishing a book right away, but the idea is there. Everything in our reality was first an idea. Well, with the exception of the voice I hear maybe… which is another story. But anyway, I hope to bring this idea to fruition before my 30th birthday. 🙂
It’s been over a week into my 30-day reading challenge. I initially thought of reading 15 pages a day, but decided to bump it up to 20 pages a day because I wanted to make sure I’d finish the first book I would be reading in less than 30 days. But now, it feels like a bit of a hassle.
Sometimes my Kindle miscounts the pages (repeating numbers). I think it’s because I changed the settings of the font text, size, and spacing. Maybe under default settings, the pages would work just fine. But, I adjusted the pages so that I could read the text more smoothly.
A chapter of the book I’m currently reading tends to fall under 20 pages. I find most chapters to be around 15 pages. So if I set the goal to be 15 pages, easy, I’d just read one chapter. But since it’s 20 pages, I have to read more. And, I don’t like to leave myself hanging in the middle of text because it’s like listening to a quarter of a conversation and waiting until the next day to hear the rest. When you do that, you generally have to go back to refresh your mind. It’s better to finish a section at a time, even if it’s longer. So for days, I’ve been reading two chapters at a time. I didn’t mind this at first. But, I guess I’m getting a little bored of what I’m reading. So if it weren’t for me challenging myself to read at least 20 pages, I’d stop after one chapter.
One way to troubleshoot this problem is to just read another book. I do have other books checked out that I had yet to read. I tried this a few days ago. The second book I read was a little strange to me though. Interesting, but weird writing. There are a couple of other books, one I know to be good but never quite finished, and another that I anticipate to be good. I could read one of those texts.
Another solution is to read one chapter in the morning and another chapter in the evening. It might be easier to split the time. Sitting for an hour reading the same text requires some mental effort and concentration. But if it’s for 20-30 minutes at a time, it’s easier to complete.
A combination of both ideas is good too. I could read one book in the morning and another in the evening. I will probably end up doing this. I can read the book I’m currently reading first thing in the morning, and then read a new book in the evening.
Of course if I want to do this, I’d have to make time in the morning. This morning, I woke up earlier than usual. I still felt tired, so I tried to go back to sleep. But I didn’t fall back asleep for some time, so I got up and started researching things on my new tablet. And then, I decided to continue coloring a sheet I printed out a couple days ago. I didn’t really think to maybe read instead. So if I wake up early like this again, I can read.
I guess even if I don’t wake up early, I can read after eating breakfast and changing my clothes for the day. It doesn’t have to be the first thing I do every morning. Though, that would be a nice way to start my day. Sometimes, I don’t feel like getting out of bed. So if I have my tablet next to me, I can just reach for it, sit up and start reading. Then when I am more awake, I can get up.
A couple nights ago, I got into coloring. I don’t know what sparked the idea. I just remember searching for markers on Amazon and looking up adult coloring sheets one day. So far, it’s pretty fun and relaxing. I decided to add this as part of the 30-day challenge: read, then color (in the evenings). I started getting into the more “difficult” parts to color on this one sheet I’m working on, so I don’t know that will go. They’re really two separate challenges going on, but it’s just easier for me to extend the reading challenge and finish both by the end of the month. And then, I can decide if I want to continue both habits. I guess it’s still early to tell, but I think that I’ll continue these two habits.
There’s only one other person I know who is doing the reading challenge with me. Though, I believe they decided to wait to start on November 1st. I started early, because well… I had everything set up, and I wanted to do something to distract me from hearing voices, so I thought why not.
It’s nice to have an accountability partner. I check-in with them about my reading habits. I sometimes tell them about what I’m reading. Or, I learn about books they’re interested in. I can share my thoughts about the challenge with that person, and we can encourage each other to continue reading.
I also know of someone else who is doing a 30-day writing challenge. It’s with NaNoWriMo. He’s writing his first novel. He’s also been doing a 365-day blogging challenge since the end of last year. So, that’s also encouraging for me. When I see him making progress on his challenge, I think that I can also progress in my own challenge.
That reminds me, there used to be an app called Lift. It’s now called Coach.Me. I tried looking it up, only to discover that it’s not compatible with my current phone… boo. The reason I liked this app was that you could find other people who were completing similar habits, or you could see your friends’ progress and check in with each other. I think it’d be nice to do something like this again with my reading habit. It might motivate me to see myself completing a 10-day streak, and then a 15-day streak, 20-day streak, etc. I’ll have to find another app to use since I can’t use it. Maybe in the meantime though, I could print out a November calendar and keep track for now. I could mark it with a big red X for reading, and a big blue O for coloring. 😁
I think it’s still too early to feel the benefits of reading 20 pages of a book daily. I guess the major benefit is that I don’t have to focus on hearing voices. And also, reading on a tablet seems to be helpful. There’s something about a screen that allows you to take the focus off hearing voices and tune into what’s in front of you.
I guess also, the book I’m currently reading has inspired a new idea for me., which is working for a crisis helpline. I found out there were volunteer opportunities for just a few hours a week. I think that’s pretty doable and easy. I can see if I enjoy it, and think about getting paid for it if I do. It can also give me some experience later if I decide to coach people virtually.
I’ve deliberately avoided naming the books I’m reading. I only want to name them after I’ve finished reading them and can for certain say that they were enjoyable books. And also, if I were to recommend them, I’d have to think about applying for Amazon’s affiliate program again so I could get a commission. 😂 (I’ve never made any money through that program even though I’ve tried in three times in the past, just a disclaimer… I guess not enough traffic or interest.)
I remember when I was reading books back when I was living in Korea, I would take notes. I would write down thought-provoking quotes or outline the main ideas. I didn’t do that with this particular book. There’s a highlight/note feature on my tablet, but I haven’t used it. I think if I were reading a book with a certain purpose (e.g. improving my success with habits), I’d use the feature. But, the book I’m reading now is simply an autobiography. If I’ve learned anything particularly useful, it’s already in my head through story.
I haven’t really thought about the long-term effects of reading daily, other than I can finally say, “I’ve read X books (since Y / this year / over my lifetime).” I don’t know how many books I’ve actually finished before this reading challenge. I can remember some, like certain book series, or ones from a particular author. And then, there are the many books I’ve read in my childhood. So I guess if I’m going to keep track, I’m going to count it from now on. Maybe I’ll save a list on my computer. (In fact, I created a spreadsheet for this just now.)
I didn’t read this morning, so I’ll probably read two different books tonight. I hope it goes well. I have had trouble completing 30-day challenges in the past. Starting late this summer, I’ve succeeded at two other informal 30-day challenges. So, I’d like to stick to this challenge too.
I’m not in any rush to move out. I don’t have to. I currently live with my parents. It took me some time to get used to, after having lived in Korea for a little over a year on my own (back in 2015-2016). There’s pros and cons to living with parents, and although I don’t mind it, I think it’s better for me to live independently again. When I’m on my own, I feel more motivated to be social, to create new habits, to try new things, to travel, and more. And, I think I would feel more comfortable creating songs or YouTube videos for example, which could contribute to my livelihood.
I’ve looked into cities that have lower costs of living. For example, the rent is cheap in Oklahoma City, and the cost of real estate in general is cheap in El Paso. I think I’ve also read that Texas has no income tax. I think in the short-term, I would move to a place that is cheaper to live. It might be anywhere from 6 months to 3 years. And then as I would grow my income, I would look into places that seem interesting.
Even though I’m looking for a place where the rent or cost of real estate is inexpensive, I still want to be careful about the climate. I prefer warm weather. I’m not a fan of the cold. When it’s cold, I don’t feel like moving or doing anything. And also, I wouldn’t have to necessarily sign up for a gym membership if the weather is nice outside year-round. I could just go for a walk, or eventually build up to a run.
I think by the time COVID-19 subsides in the US, I will be in my early 30s. That seems like a good time to live independently. With mental illness, it’s a little trickier, but these days I feel more stable. Speaking of which, I’d also want to live someplace where there is accessible mental health care.
I’m not interested in a roommate situation, but depending on my housing, I could provide an airbnb of some sort. And also, it’d be nice to have extra rooms for if friends or family visit. Or, have extra space for an office or workout room. I’m not too fussy about it. I don’t own a lot, and I know how to maximize small spaces. I lived in a studio when I was in Korea, and I could fit a bed, a piano, and a table with my computer/TV in the main space. So I’m sure that even if I ended up living in a studio again, it wouldn’t be an issue.
When you plan to move, it’s good to know what you’re looking for. I kind of already mentioned it earlier in this post, but this is my basic list of wants:
– Live by myself (though I’m open to renting out another room if I own it)
– Washer/dryer in-unit
– Mental health services available in the city that accepts insurance
– Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, Aldi’s, or some good grocery store / farmer’s market with organic produce available in the city
– $750 or less per month if renting
– Preferably warm weather year-round
There’s other things I have to consider, like will I rely on public transit, walking, get a car, or use Uber/Lyft. It can vary from city to city. Some places are more public transit friendly. In other places, people might rely more on a car.
Previously, I’ve considered moving to places like Los Angeles, Phoenix, or Seoul. Los Angeles is a little out of my price range at the moment. Plus over there, most people recommend a car. I guess Phoenix and Seoul are technically not out of the question. Rent can be found on the lower side in both areas. I know Seoul is cold in the winter, but I’m willing to live there in the winters because of all the fun places you can visit there.
Moving out of the country is tricky because I’m still on meds. Though ideally, by the time I move out, I would be completely off meds. I’m at the lowest dose right now, and I’m not exactly sure if the medicine is doing anything for me (other than preventing me from shedding all the extra pounds I gained ever since being on meds).
Though if I wanted to live in Seoul, I’d need some kind of visa. I’d probably attend a language school there and would see how it is for 6 months to a year. Moving my stuff would be tricky, though not impossible. Some things, such as my keyboard (piano), I wouldn’t take along with me. I could probably find a used one cheap there. I’d have to look into how I could ship my desktop computer all the way over.
I’m not opposed to moving abroad, but I think for convenience sake, I’d like to stick to the 48 states for now. Plus, it’d be a way for me to see how well I could handle living on my own with mental health challenges.
I know I’ve talked about being opposed to jobs in the past. I’m open to it if it’s something that interests me. Like recently, I’ve looked into helpline jobs. I thought it’d be nice if I could help someone through a simple text or phone call. Right now, I’m just looking to volunteer to see what it’s like. But if I like it, I wouldn’t mind getting paid for it.
Ideally, I’d work remotely so that I could move whenever I feel like it. It’s nice when you have that flexibility. Helplines can be remote work.
I’m guessing it will be a year before COVID-19 really settles down in our country. So in the meantime, I’d like to continue finding ways to make money online, preferably through ways that are more passive.
I’ve considered maybe becoming a habit coach of some sort. Though first, I’d want to become good at completing 30-day challenges of my own. So far this year, I’ve succeeded at completing two 30-day trials. One was to blog every day for 30 days, which kind of happened spontaneously. It was before I revamped my blog, but I still have the old posts stored on my computer. I also got into a face care kind of routine. Other habits I got into were changing into daytime clothes every morning and going for regular walks (when it’s not cold at least). I’m maybe a week into my daily reading challenge. My next challenge might be to go on Instagram Live every day for a month.
Anyway, that’s a tangent. But basically, if I could become a habit coach online, I could work remotely. I wouldn’t have to rely on finding employment nearby. I could freely travel.
I thought about how cool it would be to live in a different location every so often. I don’t know if people do this now with COVID-19, though I’ve read of people doing this in the past. They’d live a few months somewhere, then would pack their bags and move somewhere else. I think if I did this, I’d live in each location for 6 months to a year at a time. How cool would that be if you timed it so that you would live in a warm place during the winter months?
I usually like to wait some time before starting a 30-day challenge, or have it naturally happen (such as when I start a new habit, and then I decide I want to try it for 30 days to see what happens). The reason is because I want to make sure I set up a system for success. I don’t want to start prematurely only to fail halfway in.
Last night though, I got ahead of myself for my November 30-day challenge to read 20 pages of a book per day. It was time to wash my hair, and I thought I could air-dry it faster if I took a shower earlier in the evening. Usually before taking a shower, I play games on my phone just to keep myself occupied for an hour or so. But since I didn’t do that, I only had a few activities to engage it after the shower, such as clipping my nails, cleaning and folding laundry, and journaling. It didn’t take me long. I thought about playing games on my phone, but it just didn’t appeal to me. There wasn’t anything interesting to watch on TV. I thought about maybe watching Running Man, but wasn’t sure if that would keep my mind too active. So, I ended up borrowing my mom’s Kindle Fire and started reading some books in my library.
It was easier than I thought. I guess the text I was reading was not particularly difficult either, so that helped. There was also this neat feature where it tells you how many minutes you have left for finishing the chapter you are on based on your reading speed. So when I looked at that, I’d think, “Oh, only 20 minutes? Sure, I can read that long.” I didn’t have to read 20 pages since it technically wasn’t my first day. However, I ended up reading 37 pages in total. It took me around 65 minutes. It could be 5 minutes more or less, because I forgot to look at the time exactly when I started. Maybe next time, I’ll set a timer.
Since I hear voices, I was a little worried that the voice would act up. But, it was fine. It didn’t really bother me while I was reading. Instead, I was distracted by random thoughts while reading. So sometimes, I would have to go back and re-read the text.
I think I will read again tonight because it was so relaxing. I will also check out another book from my public library just in case I want to switch books. The current book I’m reading seems okay so far. Some parts I thought were a little uninteresting, but then later realized as I continued reading that she was trying to emphasize certain points.
In future posts about my reading challenge, I might mention the names of the books if I sign up for an affiliate program such as Amazon’s again. I didn’t want to mention any names without knowing how good it is. I can recommend a book if I find it valuable or helpful in some way, even without getting a commission. Though, it would be nice to also get something in return if someone ends up buying the book because I recommended it.
There might be some difference between reading a paperback and reading on a Kindle. I thought reading a paperback would be easier, but I think reading last night on the Kindle proved to be more convenient. Maybe it’s because of the added feature of the reading time estimator. Maybe it’s because I’m used to reading on screens. Maybe it’s because with a paperback, you need to have good lighting. Maybe it’s just the content of the book. I’m not really sure.
I was most surprised by how long I ended up reading. One factor that helped was my curiosity about what I was reading. I also didn’t have anything else that I particularly wanted to do. I felt like this was the most productive use of my time.
Some people would set aside time to read in the early mornings, but for me, it seems like a good way to wind down in the evenings. I would say last year this time, it was hard for me to concentrate on reading paperback books. The voice would talk out loud with my mouth while I was trying to read. I thought maybe it was because of the content of the book was related to hearing voices, but I’ve learned over time that the voice I hear doesn’t need to have any particular reason to do something. And I also remember when I first heard voices, I didn’t have trouble reading books. So, I would try reading every once in a while. Some days, I struggled. Other days felt better.
I thought about listening to ambient music while reading. But these days, I’m trying to focus on one task at a time. I want to make sure that I can do simple tasks without having to distract myself too much just so I don’t hear voices. In the past, I would have listened to podcasts while going for a walk for example. It’s kind of like how people listen to music or audiobooks while exercising at the gym. But these days, I just focus on the walk without any other external stimuli. I want the same to happen when I’m reading. I want to be able to focus on extracting the ideas on the page without relying on something else. I have to see how the following days go, though. Yesterday, I rated my difficulty of reading as a 2/5 (1 being easy, 5 being hard), because I could mostly focus on reading, I wasn’t distracted by hearing voices, though I was a little distracted with random thoughts. If I ever reach a 4 or a 5, I’ll consider using music as a way to help me focus.
Normally, I wouldn’t recommend starting a 30-day challenge early. I would say focus on creating a system to succeed. Figure out the exact parameters you’re going to use to determine if you failed or succeeded each day. Create a support system. Produce a helpful environment. Gather the necessary tools and resources. Set up a way to track your progress.
However in my case, I pretty much set up everything. The only thing I wasn’t sure about was whether 20 pages was too much for me since I haven’t been reading consistently. So, I considered yesterday to be a sort of test day. It ended up so much better than I thought. I will try it again tonight. If it goes well, I’ll consider yesterday to be my first official day of the 30-day trial. Though, I might continue for longer.
In case anyone else wants to join me in this challenge, I will share with you what I’m tracking each day. I have a spreadsheet with the dates on the left-hand side. Then on the top, there are columns for number of pages, minutes spent reading, minutes per page (which is a formula I’ve inputted of the minutes spent reading divided by the number of pages), the book/s I read that day, where I was when I was reading, difficulty (factors include how well I could focus, level of understanding, and level of distractions), and my mood prior to and while reading. I’m most curious about how reading might affect my mood on days when I’m not feeling particularly good. You might be curious about other aspects, so of course, track whatever you’re interested in.
In my last blog post, I mentioned how I would be doing a 30-day trial of reading every day. I first learned about 30-day trials or 30-day challenges from Steve Pavlina’s blog. He uses this method whenever he wants to try incorporating a new habit into his life. It seemed to work well for him, so I’ve tried a few 30-day challenges myself. Most of the time, it didn’t go as well as planned. But recently, I’ve been more consistent with maintaining habits, even if they’re not every day. And one time, before I restarted my blog this month, I went 30 days or so of writing a blog post every day. I didn’t do it intentionally. It just so happened that I felt inspired to write for more than a few days, and then I thought, “Hmm, what would happen if I kept this up for at least 30 days straight?” So then, I just continued writing for 30 days. It showed me that I could stick to a habit if I simplified it. So, here are some ideas I’ll be using to stick to my 30-day trial in November, which is to read 20 pages of a book per day.
1. Make it easy, especially if you’re new to this.
If you’re an expert, you might not have to do this. Some experts thrive at challenging themselves to do more. But for beginners such as myself, it’s best to stick to something that’s easy to do. For example, if you want to be physically active for 30 days, try walking for 10 minutes. If that seems too easy, you can of course increase it to however long you’d like. But the point is, make it easy for yourself. Don’t push yourself to do more if it seems challenging. I get that it’s a 30-day “challenge”, but the way I think about it is you’re trying to make change and see how that affects you. If you jump straight to a 1-hour run every morning at 5AM, and you haven’t worked out a day in your life, then you’re just going to dissuade yourself from ever trying it again in the future.
Eventually as you succeed in completing 30-day trials, you might be able to challenge yourself more. But in the beginning, it’s important that you make it easy enough for yourself to at least get through it.
Remember that you’re simply setting a minimum. You can always go above and beyond on the days you feel like it. For example, if your goal is to do 10 push-ups a day, maybe the first time you’ll do 2 sets of 5 push-ups. And then a week in, you might feel inspired to do 4 sets of 5 push-ups. But maybe the following week, you’re feeling more tired than usual. That’s okay. Just go back to doing 10 push-ups, whether they’re all at once or in sets.
If you’re not sure what to set your goal as because you don’t know how much you can do, try testing yourself one day before starting the actual trial. Personally for myself, I’ve been able to finish reading a chapter of a book whenever I would read in the evenings. I estimate that to be 15-20 pages or even longer. And then, I looked at the specific book I planned to read. If I were to read fast, I could get through a page in 30 seconds. At most, it would take a minute. So, I estimated that it would take me anywhere from 10 to 20 minutes to finish reading the 20 pages. Even if it took longer than that, I doubt it’d take any longer than 30 minutes. Since I’ve successfully read for 20-30 minutes at a time in the past, I thought 20 pages was an attainable goal for me.
The other thing you can do is if you’re still not sure, plan to adjust in the beginning. If I find that I can’t focus through reading 20 pages, I could lower it to 15 pages, or even 10 pages. It will still help me build the habit of reading every day. And eventually, I can increase the amount over time, whether it’s during the 30-day trial or beyond it. With any skill, you have to practice it regularly to be able to do more of it.
Also, don’t get stuck in the idea that if you’re doing a small amount, it won’t be enough to really affect your life. For example, 10 minutes of walking per day might not seem like much. But remember, you’re building a habit. 10 minutes is better than nothing. 10 minutes a day is more than an hour a week, is 5 hours in 30 days. And if you can get to 10 minutes a day, eventually you can build that up to 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, even 60 minutes a day. It’s a stepping stone, and it helps build your momentum. Never underestimate building small habits. It’s easier to build up from there.
2. Set up a system to track your progress.
Some habits have built-in measures to track your progress. For example, if your goal is to write a blog post every day for 30 days, you can clearly see the published dates on your website. But for other habits, you may have to set up a system to measure your progress.
One easy way to do this is to create a spreadsheet. You don’t need Excel if you don’t have it. You can use Numbers on Mac, or Google spreadsheets, or any open-source program that has a spreadsheet feature. If you want to cut technology out, you could create your own handwritten chart. Stick it somewhere convenient, like your fridge for tracking eating habits for example.
The reason it’s important to track your progress is because it can help you tweak future 30-day trials, or even help you in restarting a 30-day trial in case you fail. Plus, you can see how much you’ve achieved and take note of any benefits. For example, let’s say your goal is to adopt a vegan diet for 30 days. You could note the foods you’re eating, maybe how many calories you’re consuming, whatever information seems important to you. If after one week, you give up and eat animal products again, you can look back and see what went wrong. Maybe your energy dipped, or your mood was off one day. If you keep track of it, you can try researching more into it and seeing what possible solutions could help you in the future. Maybe your body needed more carbs and you were depriving it. Or maybe, you went from eating junk foods every day to no junk foods, and that was just too drastic of a change for you. The more information you record, the easier it is to draw conclusions from it and adjust for the future.
Even if you succeed at a trial, it’s good to know how it affected you. If you set a goal to wake up at 6AM every day, you might notice that you were cranky the first few days. But eventually, you might feel relaxed. Or maybe your mood suffered throughout the entire trial. You might still want to wake up early, but without feeling upset in the morning. Then you could search on the web to see how other people deal with feeling in a bad mood in the morning. Some people might suggest taking a warm shower, or meditating with scented candles, or going for a short walk. And then, you could note these activities and see how they affect your mood.
Even if you don’t want to use a spreadsheet or a chart, you could journal, blog, or jot down a few notes each day. For example, I don’t do time-logging, but every evening I write down one thing that I did that day that I consider to be beneficial or that put me in a good mood. It helps me to see how similar some of my days are, or if one particular event stood out to me, or even inspires me to try new things each day.
Of course, you could also just track your progress mentally. But, it’s much nicer to have it written out. You can always refer back to it. And, you have more of a basis for what you’ve concluded. Plus, if you ever want to share it with others or compare it to future trials, you can.
3. Give yourself time to set up a system that will clearly define a success vs. a failure.
I’d say it’s best not to dive straight into a 30-day trial just when you think of it. It’s best to think of the nuances in the challenge. If you plan on recording YouTube videos that month, how many videos will you create, one per day? And will you upload them every day too, or give yourself time to edit? Will you just choose two you like each week and upload on a Saturday and a Tuesday? How long do the videos have to be? You have to plan out all the details ahead of time. If you dive head-first into the trial without any planning, you’ll make it more difficult for yourself. Did that day really count as a success? Without clear rules, it’s hard to tell.
For myself, I plan to read every day at 9:00 PM. I chose that specific time because I want to engage myself in some activity before going to sleep. It’s the time when I’m most likely not to be doing anything important. Also, I try to avoid sleeping too early. Sometimes when I have nothing in particular to do, I have a tendency of going to bed early. I don’t wake up any earlier, so there’s no point. I feel better if I sleep at 10:00 PM or later. So, 9:00 PM seemed like the ideal time for me.
Also, do what you set out to do. If you say you’re going to do 20 push-ups, actually do 20 push-ups. It doesn’t count if you miss even one. If you’re worried you’re going to fail, set a lower goal. Maybe 20 is a push, but 10 doesn’t feel so much of a struggle. Either way, you have to make sure you follow through all the way.
4. Allow yourself a little flexibility if needed.
Will I still consider it a success if I read in the morning instead of later in the evening? I will. I’ll take note of it, of course, as I mentioned before that it’s important to track your progress and the specific details. Maybe one day, I know I’ll be out late and will probably feel too tired to read before bed. So, I’d plan to read earlier in the day. But on normal days, I’d stick to reading at 9:00 PM. You could do that too with your goals. Let’s say you had a meeting early in the morning that got in the way of your morning walk. You could adjust to an afternoon walk. It still counts.
But, you also want to make it clear if a certain rule is important to you. For example, there’s a clear difference between eating one vegan meal a day vs. eating entirely vegan for all your meals/snacks in one day. If you have even one non-vegan candy bar throughout the day, it might be a fail for you. You can be flexible, but just make sure you can tell the difference between a clear success and a failure.
Let’s say your goal is like mine, to read every day. Maybe you’d consider it a success even if you listened to an audiobook. I certainly would, though I’d probably have to adjust my goal so that it’s something like 20 pages of reading text or 20 minutes of listening to an audiobook.
Some people don’t want to stick to just walking for exercise. They might want to try yoga one day, or a combination of push-ups, sit-ups, and squats the next day. Sometimes, it’s helpful to have some flexibility so that you can keep it interesting.
5. Build a support system and constructive environment.
I tried my best to avoid the word “motivation”, because motivation can come or go. It’s not consistent. When you’re trying to complete a 30-day challenge, it’s helpful to build an environment that perpetuates success. It’s pretty much like building a system that helps you complete the goal rather than just relying on your own limited resources.
If you want to try a vegetarian diet for example, get rid of all the meat from your fridge. It makes no sense to have any temptations. You could try to avoid it, but why exert all that extra energy? Make it easy for yourself.
If your goal is to create a digital product to sell online, you could find support groups. Join a subreddit and post any questions you have about your specific goal on there. Get feedback. Connect with any friends who have done anything similar.
For a lot of people, turning a goal into a social activity can be helpful. If you want to go to the gym for thirty days, you could use your guest pass to bring a friend along. Or if you want to write a blog post each day, maybe you could go to a different location to write each day (like a cafe) and invite a friend to hang out afterwards. Or if you want to take 20 photos each day, you could invite a fellow photographer friend and shoot pictures together.
If you want to work out, try taking a class that gets you in shape. Some classes come free with a gym membership, such as yoga, zumba, or pilates. If you want to practice piano, you can sign up for lessons with an instructor. That will also help give you some accountability.
Sometimes, it’s as easy as sharing your goal with the people you live with. For example, if you want to cook every day but find it hard to do alone, you can ask one of your family members to help you prep the food. You can find shared goals or habits that you can create together.
It can even be as simple as turning to social media. You never know if one of your followers or friends is working on a similar goal. I’m most likely going to share my goal on Instagram. Since my goal is to read every day, I already asked them what their favorite books are to get some idea of what I could read. On my next story, I’m probably going to ask if any of them read every day. And if they do, I could ask them for advice, or just check-in with them every day as I’m doing the challenge.
These are just a few ideas in how you can build support systems and a constructive environment. You can be creative with this. Ideally, you’d set this up prior to executing the actual 30-day challenge. If you have any motivation before starting your trial, use it to build up a good system to help keep your momentum going.
These are the ideas I’m going to implement in my November 30-day trial of reading 20 pages a day. Writing this post out even gave me some new ideas of what to do to make it successful. Right after this blog post, I’m setting up a spreadsheet for tracking my progress.
Maybe in a future blog post, I will talk about how I set up my 30-day challenge. Some people find it helpful to read an example of a 30-day trial to set up their own. Plus, I can use it for myself to see if I actually follow through or need to make adjustments in the future.