Up your numbers! The August Challenge

2 Aug

Start dancing and watch those numbers soar!

It is a new month and I’ve decided to make it a month of challenges.

A few posts back I wrote about the rule of 10,000 hours and how the best way to get good at something is through huge amounts of conscious practice.

Around the time of writing that piece I also happened to come across this article written by a kindred spirit who goes by the name of Chilly (he’s got lot’s of other great articles too so check them out).  Chilly had the clever idea of challenging himself to a variation of the 10,000 hour rule whereby, instead of putting in 10,00o hours of dancing, he set out to have 1000 social dances in June and July.

The idea is to get as much practice as possible and setting yourself a goal (such as 1000 dances) is a fantastic way to motivate yourself. In fact, achieving the goal is irrelevant. What matters is getting out there and getting as much practice as you can possibly get.

If you think 1000 dances is unachievable why not set yourself a slightly lower goal. If your just a beginner why not say that you’re going to try and get 100 dances in your first month. If you easily achieve it, just aim higher for your next month.

I’m a huge fan of recording stats in order to monitor progress “what gets measured gets managed”. Chilly decided to use a tally-counter (like in the picture above) to record all of his dances. That way he knew exactly how many dances he got in the time frame he gave himself. If you do the same yourself you can try to beat your own record and don’t have to worry about comparing with anyone else.

I doesn’t have to be used just for dancing either. Try setting yourself a goal for doing sit-ups or push-ups to get fit; starting conversations with complete strangers to get over shyness; writing pages of that book you’ve been meaning to finish. Whatever you want to do, set yourself a challenge and use that motivation to achieve it.

Why not mention your own challenge in the comments below?

I’m starting my dance challenge tonight. What about you?

3 Responses to “Up your numbers! The August Challenge”

  1. Peter Murray August 2, 2012 at 9:16 pm #

    Good blog Richie, keep it up. My personal challenge…stop watching videos in English or reading books in English (I won’t stop reading your blog, don’t worry), maximise time spent using Japanese. Won’t go into fitness goals, I’ll be here all day.

    Oh, btw, I started Karate here. I love it, I’m terrible, but I love it. My goal there is to be able to achieve (even to 50%) the crazy stretches all the other members can do by the end of the year. You’re into Karate right?

    • The Dancing Irishman August 3, 2012 at 6:51 pm #

      Lad, giving up English is one of the best things you can do to improve your Japanese. I went through a fairly long phase where the only thing I’d read in English was the BBC news website every friday, just to keep me up to date.
      Congrats on starting the karate too. It will help you understand the culture a bit more and great for making friends. I do shotokan, what style are you at yourself?

  2. Chilly August 7, 2012 at 9:08 am #

    Thanks for the mention and good luck.

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