mountain as challenge

As you may know if you’ve followed the blog, I undertook a challenge to read 100 books for 2013.

I hit 97 books. I call it an absolute success!

I learned a few things about planning out a year-long challenge and I’ve shared those over at Birds on the Blog, you can read the post >> HERE.

Because I was so happy with my results, I decided to undertake a new challenge for 2014.

This one is a little different than reading 100 books in a year, which was definitely a challenge! Nope, this time I decided to stretch a bit more and mix it up a little.

My initial idea was to learn something new each month, so 12 different month-long challenges. But, I realized that some of the challenges might require much less than a month, and others might require a pinch more. I’ve toiled on this and still think that starting one or two new challenges each month, for a total of 20, is the way to go.

It will be impossible to make each challenge fit the mold of a month but the goal is to undertake a challenge and see what progress I make. Some will go quickly others will take more than 30 days.

I’m clearly a bit of an autodidact so most of these challenges will require that I do research as part of the undertaking. The research will mean I won’t be able to dig in right away, at the start of each month. But the idea is to constantly be moving in the direction of at least two new skills at a time.

I’m actually really excited about this challenge.

The list is not complete, yet. It is harder than you think to come up with 20 new things to learn that I want to learn. I’m still searching for a few challenges. I want to make sure that I enjoy each challenge. If I chose random challenges for the sake of choosing I will likely not be as motivated. Being excited to learn each challenge will make getting through them much easier.

I will update the list as we go and I’ll be writing updates on the challenges here on the blog as well (get regular updates in your inbox click HERE). I hope you’ll join me with challenges of your own!

So, without further ado…

The 2014 Challenge:


  • Reading Challenge – start year-long challenge to read 50 books
  • Pistol Shooting – learn rules and compete in two competitions
  • Acrylic Painting – learn how to paint! 8 week class


  • Quilling – learn how to quill and create one custom piece
  • Mtn Bike Challenge – take skills building class and participate in 2 group rides


  • Guitar Challenge – learn to play one new piece of music
  • Running Challenge – reduce 1 mile running time by 1 minute in one month


  • Piano Challenge I – Start piano challenge by learning the basics


  • Cooking challenge
  • Writing challenge – write 500 words every day for 30 days.


  • Martial Arts challenge
  • Piano Challenge II – Learn to play one song through


  • Reading Challenge (read 4 classics)


  • Rock-wall Challenge – learn the basics and set a wall challenge


  • Pottery Challenge – learn how to throw clay – 8 wk class


  • Scaredy-Cat Challenge – Parachute – jump out of a plane (omg)


  • DIY Xmas Challenge


  • ?? Still working the list 🙂

If you are doing your own challenges, let us know in the comments. I’d like to profile some other people here during the year with an interview and some links.

Happy New Year and Challenges-Away!


Long-time business owner and entrepreneur, Yolanda brings a unique perspective to building and growing small businesses. Talk with me for 30-minutes, Free, no strings attached! Click here!
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Showing 4 comments
  • Sarah

    Wow those are some challenges! The cookery challenge… Are you going to learn a specific technique or how to cook a specific meal?
    I’ll also ask about the martial arts challenge… Which one and what will signify success? A belt? A grading?

    Enough of that! I think the challenges are awesome and I think I need to do some myself. I might join you on the piano one…

    • yolanda

      Not sure on the cooking challenge… looking for ideas and the same with the martial arts challenge… need some ideas. I plan to spend even more time researching the vague ones and finding the final 4 challenges.

      • Sarah Arrow

        Well Linda took up Kick Boxing in November and she’s doing great at it (she’s 61). I never expected her to do that, she’s a yoga / pilates person. She loves it and I don’t think she’ll stop doing it now she’s started.

        The cooking is interesting, I worked for a former naval chef for a year and he taught me a lot about cooking. We started with eggs. He said eggs would be the easiest and fastest results, I can make sublime scrambled eggs, perfect omlets and lots of other things with eggs. No, that may not sound very challenging but I’ve been told after having one of my omlets you wouldn’t want to go back to eating any other kind lol.

        He also taught me how to make a roux, which is the foundation of a million sauces. I’ve not make one since but I know a great one when I taste it. In fact I have times where I’m quite a food snob.

        Strangely, I did find the creating food that tasted good therapeutic. It’s part skill, part science and a healthy dollop of good luck 🙂

        Whatever you choose I know you will enjoy it

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  • […] created a general outline for the 2014 Challenge at my new website, you can click here and see the starting list of challenges. I want it to be a work in progress, I may find something […]

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