It is true that I mostly push fitness and health-related content. I share tips about diet, nutrition, exercises, activity, and from time to time healthy mindset. Even though that last one is not much of my specialty, I often get inspired to think a bit differently and end up relating health and fitness to stuff that we do every day.
Recent events got me thinking and realizing how challenges, any sort of challenges, are super important for our growth, which brought me to the keyboard and get me inspired to build the case that challenging ourselves is crucial for not only emotional, and physical wellbeing, but also for our personal growth and mental health.
I think I better start by sharing with you the story of my last challenge, which for a lot of people, might seem like a silly and quite easy task, but for me, it was a real adventure.
A week ago, my girlfriend said that even if it’s true that I can make some delicious desserts, there is no way I can succeed in making French pastries such as croissants and pain au chocolate.
I spend probably 3 hours, watching videos, going through recipes, researching different types of butter and flour. I got the products needed, and last Sunday morning, I began the first battle with the dough.
Yes, even though I followed every single little detail, the end result did not satisfy me at all. The dough did not want to rise and did not look at all like the one presented in the videos. Anyway, I decided to keep it and went to the store for more products. Yes, I made not one, but two batches at the end.
By the time the first dough had risen, I had prepared a second one, and it was now resting in a warm bowl covered with a towel.
For those of you who do not know much about puff pastry, it is a pain in the neck. It takes at least two days to complete the process of laminating the butter. Rolling it out, folding it in a special way, then resting it in the fridge for a few hours. That process had to be repeated 3 times and left to rest for 12 hours.
Keep in mind that I had two doughs that happened to work well, I had to be pretty efficient and follow similar procedures, which did not go parallel due to the different times of preparing the dough.
Anyhow, by Monday afternoon I had the first dough turned into a really good-looking croissant, and by the evening I had the other one turned into pain au chocolat. These are not my favorite pastries, they feel a bit too heavy and I am also not a big fan of gluten as well. That does not really matter, because my product got approved by the authorized french judge (girlfriend).
As I sat down, with a huge grin on my face, looking at the croissants, I felt a sense of achievement. I kept thinking about the fact that this deliciousness took almost two entire days to be ready for consumption.
It doesn’t sound a lot, but for someone who is doing this for the first time, it was a big deal. After we talk a bit, I was asked, why I liked to be challenged like that. Well, I learned a lot through this process. Hell, I even memorized the amount of the ingredients. And, no it did not really help me with my physical wellbeing, nor did it provide me with anything healthy to eat. But, I am very happy about it. I managed to create something out of a few ingredients and it even turned out well. I feel a great sense of achievement and obviously confidence boost. But I also felt motivated. Yes, it was towards something very different from my goals, but I was motivated enough to wake up early in the morning, to go get the ingredients. I was motivated to stay up late and wait for the dough to be ready. And for some reason, I now feel more motivated towards anything else.
The point that I am trying to make with this long introduction is that regardless of the type of challenges we engage in, we always end up with a positive outcome. In my case that is the knowledge to make croissants, as well as the motivation behind writing this piece. But even if we fail in the end, that growth still matters. We have now a certain amount of time, spent reading, researching experimenting, etc… which inevitably made us grow. Now we know something else, now we have been through an experience, which has taught us something.
Of course, the challenging matter, as there are all kinds of ones that can end up being fatal. Since men compared to women are far more likely to engage in something risky and silly, I highly suggest we pick the challenges carefully and take as much time as needed to prepare for them.
I mean, you won’t try to climb Everest tomorrow, just because I challenge you, right? The goal is to experience the growth from the training towards the challenge and attempt to complete it. So please, take your time for that!
Speaking of challenges, why don’t we start with something simple. I want to challenge everybody who reads this story, to follow my Free Healthy Eating Guide for two weeks. Can we do that? Nothing fancy, no Climbing Everest, or El Capital free solo. Just a simple change in the products that we eat for only two weeks.
It is a challenge, right? It is something that can be easy for some and extremely difficult for others. But, don’t you think that we all gonna benefit from trying? How much we can potentially learn from it? Let’s find out?
Every challenge gives us strength. It gives us motivation. It gives us something that we did not have before. Every challenge takes us out of our comfort zone and requires us to go through difficulties. But that is the beauty of it.
Tony Robbins said: ``Change happens when the pain of being the same, becomes greater than the pain of change``.
Why wait for the pain to come. Challenge yourself and get better now.