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Start working toward a smarter, healthier, and happier you today with these 30-day challenge ideas, and embrace a month of small and positive change for potentially lifelong gain.
30-Day Challenge Ideas
Health & Fitness
1. Move for 15 Minutes
Exercise shouldn’t be daunting. For a simple fitness challenge you can do every day, you just need to move! Block 15 minutes of your day for 30 days. During these 15 minutes, your goal is to shake that body and booty up and down.
It doesn’t matter if you go for a walk, dance to your favorite songs, or do pushups. The only important thing is to be in constant movement for 15 minutes every day for 30 days.
2. Stretch Every Single Day
Stretching is vital for both your mental health and physical health. It can improve joint health and reduce muscle cramps and aches. So set a challenge to stretch for 15 minutes each day. You can even stretch different body parts on different days.
3. Say Goodbye to Sugar
Sugary foods taste, oh, so sweet. But they are not healthy for the body. Many foods have added sugar these days, and most of us get a taste of sweetness a bit too often in our daily lives.
Challenge yourself to say no to sugar for 30 days to improve your health. Start by reducing the amount of sugar you have each day if you don’t want to go cold turkey, and remember that healthier substitutes exist. Go for nuts and fruit instead of cake and doughnuts.
4. Get Off the Beaten Path
Challenge yourself to walk a different route to your workplace, bus stop, or grocery store for 30 days. You’ll not only see new sights while spending time outdoors but also get those extra steps in to your day
5. Drink More Water
Hydration is an important thing. But are you drinking enough? Challenge yourself to drink more water every day for 30 days. Some great ways to ensure you drink more water include:
- Drink a glass of water first thing in the morning
- Drink a glass of water right before you eat dinner or lunch
- Carry a water bottle with you
- Set reminders to take a sip or two every 30 minutes
6. Keep a Food Journal
To aid in weight loss and your physical health, try to build the habit of food journaling by writing down what you eat every day in a food diary for an entire month. By tracking your food intake, you can identify how little or often you’re eating, and what you’re eating.
Food journaling can help with meal planning and a healthier diet, which as we all know has so many benefits, both physical and mental.
Related: 30-Day Habit Tracker Printables
7. Eat Breakfast Every Morning
If your busy life means you constantly skip breakfast, try to commit to a daily routine of eating breakfast every morning. Your breakfast can be as simple as a bowl of cereal, or a slice of toast with jam or marmalade.
Wellness & Happiness
8. Quit a Bad Habit
You probably have a habit you’d like to stop or cut down. It can be drinking alcohol, smoking, biting your nails, or staying up late. You can go cold turkey and see how many ‘good’ days you can have. If that’s too drastic, just reduce the habit a little every day.
Read more: How to Break Bad Habits
9. Meditate for a Mental Clarity
Meditation and mindfulness can have a positive impact on your well-being. Set aside 15 minutes every morning/afternoon/night to meditate. You can sit down, close your eyes and focus on your breathing. If you want a bit more guidance, get a meditation app or look at free 15-minute meditations online.
10. Eat More Fruit and Vegetables
Fruit and vegetables help you stay healthier, and the healthier your body, the healthier your mind. Challenge yourself to eat at least one piece of fruit or a vegetable every day for 30 days. Such a challenge can help you lose weight and improve your overall health.
11. Counter a Negative with a Positive
Do you find yourself critiquing yourself or others during the day? It’s sometimes easier to see the bad things than to focus on the good. For 30 days, make sure to counter a negative thought you have with a positive one. D you feel lazy for not taking out the trash? Hey, at least you cooked a homemade meal!
12. Do the Things You Love
Practice more self-care for 30 days. Write down 30 things you love doing – it could be listening to music or going to the spa. Then for 30 days, tick one of those things off your list. You deserve the treat!
13. Reduce Your Screen Time
Nearly all smartphones are now equipped with screen time trackers. Commit to reducing your screen time by at least an hour a day, or if you’re feeling like a real challenge, put a total ban on screen time after a certain time in the evening.
14. Give Yourself a Social Media Detox
This one is a real tough one, but plenty of people have done it. Commit to 30 days of no social media, or if that’s too difficult, choose one of the platforms you use a lot and detox from that one specifically.
Spending more time focussing on yourself and not other people’s apparently ‘perfect’ lives will go a long way to reducing your negative thoughts, improving your mental health, and reducing the stress you feel from too much scrolling.
15. Stick to the Pomodoro Technique
The Pomodoro technique is a popular way to get more things done. You could try it for 30 days and see if it boosts your productivity. The technique is simple. Set aside 25 minutes to tackle a task. Once 25 minutes have passed, you take a five-minute break. Then you do another 25 minutes of work. Do these segments three to four times and then take a longer 30-minute break.
16. Mute Your Social Media
Browsing social media can kill your productivity. It’s time to take back your time and say goodbye to constant tweets and stories. If you don’t want to completely detox (see challenge 12), instead set app restrictions on your phone to control your time on the apps. Decrease the allowed time as days go on, especially during your designated work or productive hours.
17. Set Your Top 3
Managing your To Do-list can get overwhelming if you don’t know how to prioritize. You might have long lists of things you need to do but feel unsatisfied at the end of the day that you didn’t do ‘enough’.
Change your attitude by setting a Top 3-list for the next day. Pick the three things you want to accomplish the next day, and make sure you finish those first each day. Doing this for 30 days can teach you a lot about prioritization.
18. Plan & Act for 30 Days
Pick a bigger task you’ve wanted to accomplish for a while. Break it down into 15 smaller steps that would result in completion. On Day One, look at the first step and plan what you need to do to finish it the next day. On Day Three, you should plan for the second action, which you’ll accomplish on Day Four. Keep this up, and you’ll have your task finished in 30 days!
19. Clean Your Workspace Each Day
Your workspace can have a huge impact on your productivity. Do a digital and physical clean-up of your space. Go through your folders one at a time. Make it a habit to sort out any paperwork you have lying around at the end of the day. You can even accessorize your workspace with things that help you be more productive (hello new notebooks and fancy mousepads).
Related: Habits of Organized People
20. Watch a Ted Talk a Day
If you feel like some of your free time could be better spent doing something productive, commit to watching one Ted Talk every day, for 30 days. Most Ted Talks are anywhere between 10-30 minutes, and you’re almost guaranteed to learn something new, get educated on a topic, or be inspired by someone’s story.
21. Take a Picture
Sometimes it’s hard to remember to look around and notice all the different things in your daily lives. Photography is a great way to be more mindful of your surroundings. It’s also a big boost to your creativity!
Challenge yourself to take a photo every day for 30 days. You could pick a different theme for each day. It could be a specific object or an emotion you want to capture on film. Going about your day and thinking about what to capture on any given day is bound to get your creativity up.
Related: Habits of Creative People
22. Try to Learn a New Skill
Have you ever wanted to learn to speak a foreign language or to bake cakes? Pick a skill you’ve always wanted to learn and spend 30 days acquiring it. You can devote 30 minutes every day to practicing the skill. By the end of the month, you’ve probably gained a good grasp of it and had fun in the process.
Read more: Best Skills to Learn Online
23. Read More Fiction
Reading can boost your creativity and calm your mind. While any type of reading is beneficial, fiction can positively impact your creative thinking.
Set a time to read each day for the next 30 days for a fun and simple reading challenge. The time can range from 10 minutes to 30, whichever feels the easiest for you to get started. Depending on the book, you could even do a chapter a day. This is a great challenge you can almost immediately implement, which can set you up to build a lifelong habit with lots of benefits.
24. Journal Your Day
Get into the habit of journaling to get the creative juices flowing. Sit down at the end of the day and write down whatever comes to mind. You could use writing prompts such as:
- Favorite/the least enjoyable thing about the day
- My biggest achievement today
- The big regret of the day
- Funniest thing I saw today
- The most interesting thing I learned
Changing it up each day will make you think about your day and the things you experienced. It allows you to keep it short or go into as much detail as you want.
Read more: Daily Journal Printables (Free and Premium)
25. Write in a Gratitude Journal
Like the idea of writing down your thoughts and feelings? As great ideas ago, this is one of the simplest to do. Every morning, in a gratitude journal, practice gratitude by simply writing down 5 things you are grateful for.
This act of writing positive things will help switch your mindset and put you on a path to a better life where you learn to appreciate what you have, rather than engage in negative self talk about what you don’t have.
26. Track Your Daily Spending
You might not pay attention to your daily spending most of the time. But knowing just how much you spend and on what can help you take better care of your finances. For 30 days, write down every single purchase. You can use budgeting apps or trust the good old pen and paper method.
27. Set a Daily Budget
Budgeting is another great way to take control of your finances. Set yourself a daily budget that’s realistic but also helps you avoid overspending. Having a daily budget will make you more conscious about your spending and give you some financial discipline.
28. Save a Bit More Each Day
If you’re tired of living paycheck to paycheck, try to build habit of saving money by partaking in a 30-day savings challenge. You could start by setting aside $1 on Day One and increase the sum by $1 every day. On day 30, you would set aside $30 and have a nice sum of money to treat yourself – or to continue saving!
29. Don’t Buy Online
Online shopping has made buying things a bit too convenient. When you need something, you simply need to click and have anything you want delivered straight to your door. So put a spending freeze on all online shopping, and instead spend money in local shops, markets, and at local businesses with a physical location for the next 30 days.
Organized Home & Life
30. Optimize Your Morning
You can set a mood for the whole day by starting your mornings right. If you create a good morning routine, you’ll end up more organized without even noticing it. A good morning routine can look a little different to everyone. Things to consider include:
- Wake up 30 minutes earlier
- Prepare things for dinner as much as you can
- Scan your home and put things back to where they belong before work
- Make your bed
- Write down things you need to remember to do that day
- Prepare things for hobbies
- Eat a healthy breakfast
- Drink your coffee/smoothie/tea slowly and set your mind to the tasks ahead
31. Declutter Your Home
When was the last time you went through all your wardrobes and cabinets? You might have a lot of things tucked away and taking space. You don’t have to declutter and clear everything at once. Simply pick a single part of your house or a single cabinet/drawer to declutter every day. Go through your stuff and get rid of anything you don’t need, and reap the health benefits of a tidier and more organized home.
Related: Habits of People with Clean Homes
32. Donate an Unwanted Item
Each day, pick an item you have no use for but that you know someone else could need. You can donate items to charities like the Red Cross. You might even find local charities that want anything from clothing to furniture. You’ll have fewer things around the house, and you can help someone less fortunate.
33. Surprise Your Partner
Surprises are a fun way to spark your relationships. You don’t even need to do something big every time. Treating your partner to their favorite takeaway or leaving them a note on the pillow are sweet ways to put a smile on their face. If you’re single, then surprise a friend or a family member!
34. Give a Compliment a Day
Complimenting others makes everyone happier. It’s easy to spend more time giving negative feedback and critique, however. But for 30 days, you should make a point of giving one meaningful compliment a day.
Give a compliment to a different person each day. Be sure to make it meaningful instead of complimenting someone for looking good or being nice. As monthly challenges go, this is one of the easiest you can start doing today.
35. Give a Helping Hand
People can be notoriously bad at asking for help. So for 30 days, you want to offer a helping hand to your friends and loved ones. Whether it is babysitting or taking the neighbor’s dog for a walk, carry out a random act of kindness for someone else.
36. Reach Out to People and Connect
Making new friends can seem like a tough thing to do. But challenge yourself to reach out to new people over 30 days. It doesn’t have to lead to you becoming best friends. But even connecting to interesting people on social media and complimenting them can be a nice way to socialize.
While an every day challenge for 30 days may seem like it won’t make a difference, any new habit you can develop with a positive impact can make a huge difference on your mental and physical wellbeing.
There are so many great ideas on this list to help you do so many things, from improving self care to helping you save money. Start building healthy new habits today, and commit to 30 days of small change for potentially a lifetime habit that has a major positive impact on your life.
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