6 Ways to Challenge Yourself in 2018

Tired of the same old same old? The start of a new year is a great time to think about changes you want to make or goals you want to set. Whether you’re keen to challenge yourself creatively, physically or financially, we’ve put together six ways to shake things up. Here’s to giving it your all in 2018!

1 Achieve a dream
Is there an adventure you’ve always wanted to experience or a milestone you’ve always wanted to achieve? Whether it’s running a 10K race or the Sydney Marathon, joining a hiking group or walking the Camino de Santiago, make this the year you stop dreaming and start actively working towards your goal.

2 Make a difference
If you want to give back in 2018, why not volunteer at a local charity or get involved with a cause close to your heart? In the process of helping others, you’ll probably also be helping yourself. According to research, giving back can trigger feel-good chemicals in your brain, boost your self-esteem and help you to develop a more positive outlook.

Looking for volunteer opportunities in your area? Take a look at the options listed at cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au, govolunteer.com.au and dosomethingnearyou.com.au.

3 Set a financial goal
Most of us have some sort of financial goal we want to achieve, whether that’s saving up for an overseas holiday, buying a new car or paying off a home loan in a certain number of years. If you have a goal in mind, make this the year that you set a budget (and stick to it) and put a savings plan in place to help you get there.

4 Learn something new
Keen to pick up a new skill or hobby? Learning doesn’t end when you finish school, so take this opportunity to be a student again. Some ideas: sign up for a language course, learn to play an instrument, plant a veggie garden, start a blog, take a photography course, join a dance class… There are loads of creative ways to enrich your life, so choose one that you’d like to explore this year.

5 Try a new class at Elixr
Been meaning to try a Pilates, yoga, meditation or Real Fitness Kickboxing class? Now’s the perfect time to sign up for one of our monthly (and newbie-friendly) introductory courses to find out what these classes are all about and what you can expect when you join. They’re free and you can bring up to two guests with you, so enlist a friend and book your spot at elixr.com.au/courses/introductory-courses.

6 Grow your circle
There’s something really special about spending time with good friends, so it’s no surprise that having a strong support system of friends can improve your wellbeing. According to the Mayo Clinic, friends can boost your happiness, self-confidence and self-worth, among other benefits. If you’re keen to connect with new people this year, here are some ideas to get you started: join a book club in your area, become a regular at an Elixr class, pick up a new hobby or join a running club. You could also consider reconnecting with old friends who you’d love to be in touch with again.

An app to help you get there
If you’ve set yourself a goal or challenge and want some extra support along the way, take a look at the free WOOP app. Described as “a practical, accessible, evidence-based mental strategy that people can use to find and fulfill their wishes and change their habits,” this online tool is designed to help you set goals effectively and track your progress. Visit woopmylife.org for more.