Have you ever heard of a 30 day challenge? Have you ever considered starting one but you don’t know the what and how?
Do you have a craving for achieving more in your life, improving yourself, making the most of your time, but you struggle to make this desire a reality?
Or maybe you start something but you struggle to continue to the end, and then you find yourself back to square one but with more frustration than before?
30 day challenges have become very popular recently, as they claim to have the power to transform your life. I do believe in this, but the success isn’t given by the 30 days in itself, but by the hard work, determination, and discipline.
In this blog post, I want to share with you everything I know about 30 day challenges as well as my own 30 day challenge ideas to make you your most productive (and whole) in all areas of your life.
What is a 30 day challenge?
A 30 day challenge is literally just that; a challenge that you implement in your life for the duration of 30 days with the aim of helping you to achieve one or more goals that you have set for yourself.
Usually, these goals are around implementing new habits to swap with bad ones, to improve your lifestyle and help you grow and thrive in every area of your life.
Does the 30 day challenge really work?
I wholeheartedly believe that a 30 day challenge can work. Although we have all heard about how it takes 21 days to implement a new habit, studies have recently proven that it takes on average 66 days.
So why do I believe that a 30 day challenge can work? Because even though it takes longer than that for you to successfully start doing certain things automatically, from my experience, 30 days are a great start to change your mindset, be intentional, and stay consistent.
Do I believe you should stop your challenge after 30 days? That depends on what you are doing and how it aligns to your goals. For example, I don’t really care about running, but I would set myself a running 30 day challenge just to challenge myself and prove that I can do it.
Would I continue doing it after the 30 days? Probably not, as it’s not really one of my goals. But I do want to exercise regularly (doing something different than running) so I’d definitely carry that on as a (hopefully) lifelong habit.
See what I mean? 30 day challenges can definitely work, but then it depends on your broader goals to decide whether or not you want to continue.
Some challenges are just for fun and to (literally) challenge yourself. Others are to begin implementing new positive habits that you can take with you for longer than 30 days. It’s up to you to decide.
You might also like: 10 habits to adopt for success, 5 habits to break now
What can you accomplish in 30 days?
Honestly, I think that the answer to this changes a lot depending on each person.
The outcome of your 30 day challenge will depend a lot on your mindset, however, I have a few points to share with you.
First of all, I’d personally recommend that you focus on one challenge at a time if it’s a really big one. However, if you’re trying to implement some small habits, it’s good to try and work on them together if you’re able to keep up, but again, it’s totally up to you and you shouldn’t feel any pressure to copy what everyone else is doing.
Also, I believe that rather than focusing on what we can accomplish in 30 days (quantity), we should focus on how we can accomplish certain things in 30 days (quality).
So I have a few tips for you to make sure that no matter how many things you want to challenge yourself on for the duration of 30 days, you will do them well.
- Write down your challenge ideas – Whatever you choose to do, don’t expect to remember everything in your head. With the information overload we’re all overwhelmed with, unless we write things down, we’ll likely forget them.
- Track your progress – There’s something about seeing your progress visually that makes the process more enjoyable and makes you more likely to stick through until the end. Don’t know how to track the progress of your challenge? You can check out my habit tracker here to keep you focused on your wins!
- Find accountability – Another key point of winning at your 30 day challenge is to find accountability. Maybe someone you know wants to do exactly the same things as you, which would be great, but even if you end up doing different things, the fact that you can both encourage each other and keep each other motivated, will help you to be successful in your challenge.
Okay, I’ve done enough talking for now so I think you’re ready to find out some 30 day challenge ideas that will help you to be more productive in your life, reach overall wellbeing and help you to become the best version of yourself.
30 day challenge ideas for productivity, health and wellbeing
Read a personal development book for 20 minutes every day
What you consume, you become. So make sure that the time you spend digesting information will help you to grow as an individual both in your personal and professional life.
Write down one thing you’re grateful for every day
I know it’s easier to complain and look at all the things that are not going well in our lives, but how about looking at the positives and being grateful for them?
Challenge yourself to keep a gratitude list for 30 days, and every day write something you’re grateful for, no matter how small it may seem.
Drink 8 glasses of water every day
This is a huge challenge for many of us, but over 70% of our bodies are made of water, and not only do we need water to function physically and let our organs function well, but drinking plenty of water has also been proven to increase productivity and focus.
Walk 10,000 steps every day
I’m not telling you to do crazy workouts or run a marathon, but starting by walking 10,000 steps every day is a great beginning. You’ll be able to have more clarity for your mind, more focus, more mobility in your body and you’ll probably also improve your mood.
As the productivity geek that I am, I love a good decluttering session. Declutter your wardrobe, house, inbox, laptop, paperwork, whatever it is that needs a good clean up for a fresh start.
Unplug from social media
I know that in the age we live in, we have all developed an addiction to social media. However, I really encourage you to challenge yourself and do a detox for 30 days. You can completely delete the apps from your phone, or if you use social media for business, you can set the time limit from your phone settings so that you have enough time to complete your tasks and then switch off.
Do uninterrupted work for 25 minutes, then take a 5 minutes break and repeat
You may know this as the Pomodoro Technique, which I talk about in detail here, but it’s a great way to boost your productivity, do focused work and feel more accomplished throughout the day.
Focus on your top 3 priorities each day
We all feel the pressure of accomplishing 1000 different things each day. However, that doesn’t make us very productive, if anything it makes us anxious and unfulfilled. So challenge yourself to only focus on your top 3 each day, and once you’re done with them, you’re done.
Create a morning routine
Listen, this is probably one of THE BEST things I’ve done in my life. When you have a morning routine tailored to your needs, you’ll be able to set the right tone for the day, feel rested, accomplished, and ready to tackle whatever comes your way. We all need to preserve our sanity, and having a morning routine will do just that.
Cook one meal a day from scratch
What does this have to do with productivity? Well, it does. First of all, cooking a healthy meal from scratch helps you to feed your body the right way to make sure that even your brain can function.
Plus, focusing on cooking something and putting your attention there, will help you to improve your focus, avoid multitasking and reduce the distractions in your life.
Switch off your phone 1 hour before bed
Another technology-related challenge. I think it’s important to try and challenge ourselves in this area as what you do before you go to sleep will impact the quality of your sleep and even how your next day will go. Crazy, huh? By switching off your phone you can focus on praying, doing a skincare routine, reading a book, or doing some other relaxing activities that will prepare you for bed.
Close the tabs on your computer!
I’m calling myself out on this, but I know I’m not the only one. Working with 1000 different tabs open doesn’t help us to be more productive, in fact, it makes us switch from one task to another meaning that no good work will get done.
Make your declaration for the day
There’s a proverb that says that the power of life and death lies in your tongue. During my prayer time in the morning, I ask for the grace to handle whatever comes my way, to have a blessed, productive, and fruitful day, and to be a blessing to others.
By doing something like this, you’ll set the tone for the day and remain focused no matter what will happen.
Plan for the week ahead
You’ll thank your future self for this. Spending some time to plan for the week ahead will allow you to be organized, laser-focused on your priorities, avoid wasting your time, and accomplish the goals you set for yourself.
Take one action for your passion project/side hustle every day
Whether that means buying a domain for your blog, or scheduling social media posts, or networking with other people in your niche, do something that will take you closer to fulfilling your big goal and building your dream life.
Invest in yourself
I always say that investing in yourself is one of the best things you can do for your growth and to build your best life. There are so many ways to do this and you can have a look at this post, but I really encourage you to challenge yourself in this area.
Make your bed every day
This sounds like such a silly, irrelevant thing but trust me when I say, it’s a powerful habit to build in your life. Such a simple task teaches you the power of consistency and discipline in any area of your life.
Create an evening routine
Just as much as I’m a fan of a morning routine, I believe that an evening routine is also essential in keeping you on track with your goals, allowing you to stay productive whilst looking after yourself and your wellbeing. You can read more about it here.
Spend time in nature
Few things boost our health and focus like spending time in nature does. Even if you just sit in the sunshine, or go to a local park, or go out on a rainy day, there’s something about nature that helps to keep us grounded, decrease stress and anxiety and improve our mood and clarity.
Keep a journal of your challenge
Aside from tracking your progress, why not challenge yourself to journal about the challenge? You can write how you feel, what you’re most proud of, what you can improve on, and then you can always read this whenever you want to start a new challenge or have a little boost of motivation.
Only check your emails twice a day
This is a very hard challenge for many, but it will help you to save time in the long run and eliminate the “email checking addiction”.
Ditch the TV
I know we all enjoy a good Netflix show, but do you know how much time we waste in front of the tv, especially since tv shows are made to be addictive? Try to ditch Netflix/TV/Prime or any other streaming service for 30 days, and see how much more free time you’ll have in your day.
I will never promote you’re always in work mode and never rest. For many, hustling is normal and resting isn’t an option, so I challenge you to schedule daily rest in your life, and you’ll see the difference it will make.
Try out different workspaces
Sometimes our productivity is stagnant because we’re always stuck working in the same place. Try to change up your environment, see what works best and stick with it for a bit, then change again to always give your mind a fresh perspective.
Have 5 minutes of silence every day
I mean full silence, no phone, no distractions, even no thoughts! Sometimes I have to tell my mind to shut up cause it’s always thinking and being noisy, but if you practice 5 minutes of complete silence each day you’ll feel well-rested, and you’ll have a clearer mind.
Spend daily time with your loved ones
Whether that’s physically or virtually, spending time with our family/the people we love is essential for our wellbeing, our growth, and the quality of our life. My family is the most important thing for me, and I always aim to keep it that way.
Unsubscribe from irrelevant newsletters
Nothing clutters your inbox more than emails that are not supposed to be there in the first place. This is a personal challenge for myself too but I invite you to unsubscribe from all those emails you receive daily that you never even open. It will be a long task, but it will be worth it.
For many, celebrating your wins isn’t something that matters, but giving yourself a reward when you’ve done something well or achieved a goal, will actually help you to keep working hard towards your other goals and stay motivated in the long run.
Clean out your desk
The environment you work in will have a huge effect on your productivity. So make sure your desk only has what you need to work on your tasks, including a big glass of water and some blue light glasses to make the most of your focus.
Learn to say NO
As a recovering people pleaser, I know this isn’t the easiest thing to do. However, it will save you a lot of time so you can focus on doing the things that matter instead of answering everyone’s demands (of course, I’m not telling you to be selfish but to be mindful of where you invest your time).
Final notes on the 30 day productivity challenge
There you have it! 30 ideas for a 30 day challenge to make sure you start (or continue) your journey towards self-improvement, that you become more intentional with your time and your life, and that you can skyrocket your productivity. Let me know in the comments which challenge you plan to start with!