Starting a 7-day challenge

I have been pondering the idea of beginning a new personal project. I do have a couple of ideas, but I am hesitant to really commit to one of them. One reason for my hesitation is that none of the projects really excite me. And at this point I don’t really want to commit to a project if I am not genuinely excited. Especially, because I know from experience that I will feel bad about myself when I eventually drop those projects.

On the other hand: I do want to start something new. 😀

Instead of putting myself on the spot to fully commit to a new project, I decided to re-frame it as an X-day challenge. I thought about making it a 30-day challenge, just because those are pretty common across the internet. But I don’t think it’s a great idea to start with a 30-day challenge if you have never done so before. And I have not. If you are confident that you will cross the finishing line, then, by all means, go for it. But when I think about my particular idea for a 30-day challenge, I am not at all certain that I will manage to stick to it for 30 days. I recently completed ten days of blogging every day, so I know that is something I can do. Working on a project can be more challenging than blogging, so I decided to lower the bar even more: I will start with a week-long challenge, a 7-day challenge. I am pretty certain that I will be able to complete this challenge.

So, is this even a challenge? Maybe not. I am not doing this to test the limits of my will-power and determination. I am doing it to set myself up for success. I want to reach a goal that is non-trivial, that will feel like an accomplishment, however small it may be. In that sense it is not a challenge. But it will be an exercise in self-efficacy. I would expect that if I complete a number of 7-day challenges, I will become more confident in my ability to actually start and complete a 30-day challenge.

The actual project is going to be a software project that I have been thinking about. I have yet to decide if I will build it in public, i.e. create a public git repository and actually push my commits on a daily basis. It feels like a lot of overhead for such a short project. On the other hand, I kind of like the idea of having something to show as the result of this challenge.

I will decide when I write down the rules for my 7-day challenge.

Update: You can find the rules here. Update: After writing this post I have decided on a project and name: MembershipNerd

See also