The experts say it takes 21 days to form a new habit, and I’ve seen a variety of 21-day challenges recently. Everything from photos to fitness, to mindfulness to weight loss. It made me wonder how many people actually make it a habit, and continue to learn new things and push themselves further, and how many just make it to Day 21, and say, “yay, I did it” and then stop. Anyone who knows me, knows that I am always up for a challenge, but there was only one way to find out which category I fit into, which was to try it.
I got ‘liked’ and ‘followed’ and ‘comments’ from people all over the world! Who knew there was so much inspiration, encouragement, support and friendship in my little handheld light box?!
However, when I considered joining a 21-day yoga challenge on Instagram, it had already started, and as a true beginner, I didn’t want to try to play catch up, or just skip those few days. I also didn’t want to compete with anyone but myself. So I took the idea and twisted it and shaped it into my own brand of a self-challenge, which turned out to have many added perks. Here are a few of the unexpected rewards and extra benefits I gained from what I call my “28-day Doga Yoga” series.
1. It takes a full 4-weeks.
Since yoga are the physical, mental and spiritual practices that aim to balance and transform the body and mind, I think most women could appreciate the need to see it through one complete monthly cycle (at least). By practicing and posting for 28 days, I was able to discern the differences in my appearance, ability and attitude on any given day. It was valuable information that I could apply to other parts of my life (and make any necessary adjustments or modifications).
2. How to multi-train.
Not only did I train my body to stretch and my mind to focus, but also I trained my dog in the very same ways. For Netsuke, my Pomeranian puppy, it wasn’t so much spiritual, but more about her timing and response to my movements and commands. It was a special time each day for us to be active and engage in creative training together. Hey, they don’t call it “upward facing dog” for nothing.
3. Technological advancements
The poses didn’t have any technology to them, but the daily photos and the editing, decorating, sharing, and posting of them certainly did! I mean, did you know that you can change the color of your yogawear, and smooth out freckles and other skin blemishes using Lightroom (my photo editing software)? Also, a little app called Instacollage has a gallery of more than 60 frames, the full spectrum of colors and 20 different fonts for text! Plus, you can publish directly from Instacollage to all the major social networks, which made for some amazing and immediate content. And hashtags? Oh yeah — exploring, creating and using hashtags had a profound effect on the exposure and accountability of my self-challenge! In fact, they are the reason for ‘benefit #4’ below.
4. A world of LMOs.
Once I got the hang of hashtags, I got ‘liked’ and ‘followed’ and ‘comments’ from people all over the world! Who knew there was so much inspiration, encouragement, support and friendship in my little handheld light box?! My LMOs (like minded others) now include sweet, spirited yogis from various places in the U.S., South Korea, Europe, and even here in Japan. In the beginning, I had to search the internet for images of yoga poses for my self-challenge. Now, all I have to do is tap the IG icon on my phone and my LMOs show me the moves, still my mind, and feed my spirit!
So, yeah, I’m always up for a ‘challenge’. Maybe that’s because I know I have the will power to complete a short-term regimen of just about anything. That’s easy. But to form a habit doesn’t require completing a challenge. Rather, it takes deleting parts of ‘challenge’ in order to bring about cha
llenge. From my Doga Yoga experience, I can say, “yay, I did it!”, AND I’m going to keep doing it. That is, I’m going to keep learning new things, pushing myself further and bringing about change in my life! How ’bout you — up for a cha llenge?