5 Ways to Challenge Yourself in 2014

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You’ve worked hard in 2013 and, even though 2014 is only about to get started, you know that a whole year can go by quicker than you think.

Reflecting back on 2013, what did you learn this year? How did you challenge yourself? Did you grow? Self-reflection and improvement should be something we think about consistently — especially as we head into a new year.

Here are a few ways you can challenge yourself this year:

1) Make your own opportunities.

When things aren’t going our way, we often complain that the opportunities just aren’t available to us. And sometimes, they just aren’t. Luck isn’t on everyone’s side. If you don’t see the opportunities you want available, make them. It’s not enough to know what you want. You need to know how to get there. Make an actionable plan and things will start happening.

2) Do something that scares you.

What can be a bigger challenge than doing something you’re afraid of? Fear can be a very paralyzing feeling. Even if we have no real reason to be fearful of something, the slightest perception of fear being present can really hold us back – sometimes from doing some great things. This year, challenge yourself to conquer a fear. Whether or not you get through it, you’ll feel awesome about yourself knowing you took a challenge head on. You’ll even find yourself a little less fearful.

3) Travel somewhere you’ve never been.

Traveling can be one of the most eye opening experiences we have in our lives. We tend to travel to familiar places, like our home towns or cities where we have friends and family, We also tend to travel to places where we know we’ll be comfortable, like some tropical destination in the Caribbean. This year, though, think about traveling somewhere you’ve never been or never really thought about going. Think outside of the typical tourist destinations. Experiencing new cultures, foods, and overall ways of life can be really eye opening and life changing.

4) Meet new people.

Having the right people around us can the be the difference between achieving success or failing. While you may have a great support system in your family and your existing group of friends, meeting new people can introduce you to new perspectives. Even if you don’t necessarily want to become their new best friend, try to go out and meet new people, whether personally or professionally. They might be give you a new, fresh outlook on life.

5) Change your daily routine.

Having a daily routine can make us feel very comfortable. While that feeling is nice, being too comfortable can also put us in a rut. When we’re too use to something, we don’t want to change it. We’re scared of change and what negativity that might bring. However, if you don’t welcome change in your life, you might never grow. While change can be scary, it’s necessary in life to help you reach your goals. Start by changing just a little something in your daily routine and take note of how much more productive it makes you. The results can be rather surprising.

Regardless of the outcome, remember to challenge yourself think bigger, be bolder and reach further.

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