Monday, February 1, 2010

"For the First Time" Challenge

I am 2 weeks into facilitating/teaching a 12 week class on Joanna Weaver's book "Having a Mary Spirit". I am fully enjoying the women who are a part of this experience, and the interaction we have each week!

To begin my last class, I had this question up on the whiteboard:

"When was the last time you did something for the first time?"

I can't remember where I first saw this question, but I do know that it took me aback a bit. I thought about the question a lot, and wondered if many lives have become dull and boring because they no longer seek out new experiences, new adventures. After all, it seems safe to stay in a routine (could be a rut) with our heads down and our guards up. But are we really LIVING our lives to the fullest when we can't remember the last time we did something for the first time?

I've been thinking about goals for 2010, and I have some ready to put on paper and commit to. But, after contemplating this question, I think I HAVE to have a goal about having first time experiences and adventures in 2010. What if I had a goal of doing SOMETHING for the first time at least once a month? That would mean 12 new experiences - well, 11 now that it is February. That doesn't seem like very much to aim for. So I think I will step out on a limb and say that for the next 11 months, I will find something to do for the first time ever at least twice a month. 22 new experiences. 22 things I have never done before. So that I know I am really LIVING my life - on purpose, with purpose.

I've never really been good at "adventures". I feel fear of things like roller coasters and discomfort of things like walking in a room full of people who all seem to know one another and are talking. But I have a suspicion that my life could be so much more if I just step into the opportunities that come my way "for the first time".

How about you? Are you willing to commit to doing something new twice a month for the next 11 months? Where might those experiences take you? What changes might a commitment like this bring into your life? What FUN might you have?

You might wonder how I answered that question, "When was the last time you did something for the first time?" I now have a Wii (thanks to my wonderful husband and the occasion of Christmas). So I have been enjoying Wii Fit and Wii Sports in the month of January for the first time ever. As well, I was the main presenter at a 2 day retreat - the first time I had done that retreat and that topic. AND I signed up for my first ever smARTist Telesummit, which just ended. SO I'm off to a good start. But you know what? When I read that question, I had to really think hard to come up with these things, because it was not something I had ever really thought about nor consciously planned.

Okay - here's the deal. I promise I will let you know what things I do for the first time as a part of this 2010 goal. And if you are willing, maybe we could have a conversation about what happens in your life too. Want to do this together? I'd really like that! It could lead to some very exciting and unexpected events! You never know what might happen.

Here are some ideas I've already come up with :

* cook a new recipe (try an Ethnic meal)
* visit a new museum or art gallery
* travel to a place I've never been before
* volunteer with an organization
* try a new medium in my art
* paint a subject for the first time

Let me know if you're in... what have you got to loose?


Princess Pamela said...

Joanne, I'm going to give this a shot. I can't guarantee I can manage 2 new things per month, given some ongoing health issues, but I'm going to do my very best to commit to one new thing for sure.

Thanks for reminding us that we never lose our capacity for trying new things. God created us to be inquisitive and able to face challenges, so who are we to disappoint Him?

I look forward to sharing our adventures with each other!

Joanne said...

Hi Pam!

I am so glad to not be in this challenge alone! It will be fun to see what we each come up with - and where that journey takes us. Thanks for joining me in this... it's good to have a friend walking by my side. (I feel a little bit like we are hobbits setting off in search of adventures!)

Anonymous said...

Very cool that you're teaching a class.

About the challenge... that's cool, too... let me think of a challenge. ;-)