Looking back on January

After the first month of The Great Wake Up, it's time to reflect.

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I was so sad not to have an experiment for this week - it's been a treat to have someone else giving me the challenges to shake my life up each week! If you've ever tried to change your life somehow, you'll know that "do something different/scary/exciting" is a regular piece of advice that comes up. And let me tell you, that's harder than it seems!

The problem is, we all live within our own experiences, and it is (by definition) not easy to think of something you'd not normally think about doing, that you would be willing to do. I mean, I can think about trekking in the Andes, or diving with sharks, or giving up my car for a month, but I live out of town, I'm terrified (seriously) of sharks and I HATE walking uphill. So there's not much chance I'd do any of those, even if I had all the time and money in the world. And, let's face it, most of us don't have either of those...

What's been great about The Great Wake-Up is that the challenges are accessible but, more than, that someone else thought of them. So they've pushed me beyond the bounds of my own imagination. (Well, to be fair, sometimes the pushing has been "how can I twist this to make it feasible - and somehow justify that" but even that has engaged my brain on a deeper level, thinking outside of my normal routine.)

Whether it was the cringing discomfort (and secret pleasure) of connecting with my family by saying out loud what I love about them, or the abiding joy of waking up with the sunrise on a chilly January morning, or the satisfaction of appreciating my culinary heritage, or even the guilty failure to engage with the digital disconnect, the experiments have already brought me a greater sense of presence in my own life and an openness to new possibilities. (They've also helped me appear very wise, as I've suggested to friends who are feeling stuck that what they need is to step out of their routine focus to create some fresh energy - thanks, Chris!)

So, roll on the next eleven months! I can't wait to see what's next!


cat lover, wife, designer, analyst (the spreadsheet kind...), friend, sister, daughter, writer, consultant, lover of beauty...


Go to the profile of Sarah-Kate Goodwin
almost 6 years ago
Yes! When we want to change something we often think we need to change the BIG things in our life or do something out of our character. But actually the smallest things(the ones so small we don't even notice them) make the biggest impact and are attainable! Great summary Vanessa. Thank you for putting my thoughts into wonderful writing