Silver Lining: Thinking Outside the Box: our April family challenge

May 10, 2013

Thinking Outside the Box: our April family challenge

In the beginning of April, I was in a tough spot with my career. I thought I would have to change grades or schools, and that was scary to me. I can only do 5th grade at my current school, I thought. That's my niche, that's what I'm good at, that's the only way I can be successful.

I guess you could say I had built a box that was my comfort zone, and I lived in that box. I think we all do that. It's hard for us to think about things outside our comfort zone, outside what we think is good or acceptable or comfortable. Sam and I were talking about these boxes we build for ourselves, and how we wanted to change that, to think outside the box, embrace new perspectives, and try new things. So we started a family challenge.

{And I'd be lying if I didn't say Jason came with some serious boxes we wanted him to get out of.}


So our April family challenge was born. During the month of April, we all did things that were new or uncomfortable or challenging for us. Some were big things, some were small things (please be kind when you see our list - you have no idea the meaning and significance behind some of these seemingly small things!).

+ listen to nothing but classical music all day
+ donate a big box or two of nice things we own to DI
+ sincerely compliment three people a day

+ sign up for a business class this summer
+ play the piano for 15 minutes for the first time in years

+ stop doing "girl" pushups, only do "boy" pushups
+ play half an hour of video games with an open mind
+ donate hair to Locks of Love

+ sit by completely new people at lunch one day
+ cook a full meal

We had so much fun doing this! Some were little, easy things, and some took a lot more courage and bravery than you think. In the end, we did it! We learned it's okay to embrace new things and do things you're bad at.

Have you ever done something like this?
What helps you try new things?
How do you get out of your comfort zone?


  1. I love the video game one! Did you make it through a whole day of classical music? I'm not sure I could do that. Great challenges! I get pretty stuck inside my comfort zone too. Sometimes it's hard to understand that it's good to do something scary.

  2. AnonymousMay 10, 2013

    This looks exciting! I should try coming up with some lists - I love it!


  3. way to go :)

    and how are those boy pushups coming?

  4. I like this! I need to try more things and get out of my comfort zone. Thanks for sharing!

  5. AnonymousMay 10, 2013

    That is an amazing list! I love the idea of this challenge, I want to do it next month :D Thank you so much for sharing!
    I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

  6. What an awesome idea! You guys are terrific. That's so great that you were able to brainstorm and make this plan as a family. :D Love the Eleanor Roosevelt quote too - we'll be talking about her in my class on Monday, maybe I will discuss it with my class. Thanks for sharing!

  7. I fully 100% understand the video games one. I should do that with my husband. Great idea.

  8. I think that is an awesome family challenge!!


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