Four years ago I decided to start with the the thing called “yearly challenge”, the reason was I had just passed my mid twenties and I felt like it was time to go back and do a retrospective. Time to look at the things I’ve done wrong, could have done better or missed doing. The result / conclusion was that I didn’t really go out of my comfort zone and I needed to change that (reading in my inner voice):
You need to change this, let’s see some of the things you are failing to do and do them for more than a week or a month. A year would be a good period of time. Of course you can’t really focus on each problem that you have, so just choose something that is bothering you and start from there
That’s how in 2016 I decided to start small, the idea was to read at least one book each month for the whole year. Just one book a month may not sound much, but I was looking into something that would not destroy my work, my social life and I could still have the occasional free time to play a game or just do nothing.
Then in 2017 after the success of the first one I decided to focus more on my physical condition. In order to motivate myself I decided to shoot big this time. Go for something that will keep me focused during the whole year, like start running and do a 1000 kilometers by the end of the year. I chose that as it required no gear or a special place to do so (oh I was so wrong about the gear). Enjoyed every second of it… natttt
In 2018 I had the plan to focus more on my musical career, a total number of 419 hours were spent improving my musical abilities, playing, composing and practicing. I learned several tricks on recordings as well.
There was a time during my last challenge, when I was sitting down and was trying to write some lyrics for a song that we have composed for my band. I did a bunch of tries and decided to leave it as nothing got to my mind (I knew by that time that forcing something to happen is not really helping the end product, but leaving it for the unknown future is like doing the same thing). So, on the next day I tried again and still got no idea on how to deal with it… Then I looped that for a week… At some point the magic happened… I’ve managed to write something that I really love.
That was not the point though, what really got me was the whole process of trying and failing, I was not doing this professionally and I did not have a deadline, but it messed with my mind. This is exactly what I am looking for in a challenge, call it a sign or something if you believe in those kind of things, but that’s how the whole idea got stuck in my head. Probably I can improve in that direction, probably I can start writing and improve it as a skill. It worked with reading. It worked with sports and playing. Why wouldn’t it work with writing as well? So during my December brake, I’ve made this small blog in which I am going to train my writing skills.
2019 will be the year of writing, I am going to write about things that I don’t know well or I don’t know at all, this will involve a process of investigating, getting to know the matter and formulating the final outcome. I am not going to force myself with something like “a post each month”, but rather I will try not to slack (although everything under 7, 8 posts for the year would be a failure :D). Here are some rules that can shape the challenge in a better way:
- I will mostly write in English, probably will add some things in Bulgarian as well but my main focus would be my second language.
- I will read several books on how to write well, one that got into my sight is Zen in the Art of Writing several others to come, I will share them in one of the posts I guess.
- Choosing a field that I don’t know well is a good thing, but it does not have to be a hard rule, trying to be as flexible as possible here.
- Everyone that knows me well, knows that it is not in my nature to cheat / slack, having said that I will take my time to really dive into a problem/theme that I want to write about and will explore until I feel comfortable enough to write something about it.
- It does not have to be all Posts and Blogs, I can share some lyrics that I’ve written as well or even some work related things I have found interesting.
- I will start typing using all of my fingers, still got ten of them which is really a miracle with the childhood I had. I will use https://www.typing.academy as a tool to help me in the process.
- This will not stop me from improving my actual writing as well, so paper BEWARE.
You can find out how I am progressing on tagrudev.com or todorgrudev.com both will direct you to this blog, I will be very grateful if you comment, grammar nazi me or teach me something about writing. Every post will have a link on my facebook page, so you can use that as well.
I am going to end this with wishes of success and happiness, let 2019 brings the best of you. Work hard.