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Either the world is going to end tomorrow, in which case, this blog is probably not relevant, or it’s that time of year when we make New Year’s resolutions we have no real intention of keeping.  So I’m making some resolutions (or challenges as I prefer to call them) now, without the stigma of New Year to foil my plans.

A while ago my son and I watched a movie called The Way, starring Emilio Estevez (hubba hubba) and Martin Sheen (ditto).  It’s about one man’s journey to follow his son’s footsteps to understand him.  He walks the Camino de Santiago and discovers himself along the way. My son Lachlan would love to walk it…it looks amazing but too energetic for me..  The movie sparked a thought process in my brain though.  So Lachlan and I were talking recently, and I said to him that I have been too hermit like for the last five years, which is very unlike me.  I am, by nature, gregarious, outgoing and sociable, so to have lived a fairly reclusive life for so long is totally out of character for me.  If you’re reading my blog for the first time, you won’t know about me running away from home (read it here) five years ago.   I left the place I had lived for the whole 46 years of my life up until then, and left for the great unknown, with no real plans in place.

For the last five years I’ve taken the time to finally face my past and start to heal from the memory demons I’d been fighting. So starting over in a new place, where I know very few people has been somewhat of a challenge socially.  To be fair, the times where I’ve been invited out, I have usually said no, because I had become used to being a hermit.  So I said to Lachlan that I was going to accept every invitation I got from here until the New Year.

Sounded pretty safe at the time as I don’t usually get very many invitations anymore lol.  Well, wouldn’t you know it.. as soon as I set myself the challenge, invitations started to flow in.  True to my word, I have accepted them all and tried not to even consider making excuses not to go.  The best thing about all of this, is I’m starting to wake up socially again.  I’ve been so focused on myself over the last five years, as was necessary, that my sociable side had gone to sleep… She’s now awake, God help us.  The difference is, I no longer want to socialise to distract or hide from myself and my pain.  Now I want to socialise because I’m ready to start living again.  I have missed company… I have missed friendships… I have missed my Leo side!

A little while ago I started following a blog called Challenge Changer and I just loved it.  Berocca (the writer) takes us on her personal challenge to try something new every week.  Have a read, it’s definitely worth it.  So she got me thinking. If  I haven’t panicked at the thought of, or made excuses not to accept any invitation for the space of a few weeks… maybe I should up the ante.  So here I am.. setting a bigger challenge and hoping you’re going to help me.

In 2013, I’m going to accept all invitations I receive (conditional, of course, on availability, finances and danger factor).  I mean, as much as I want to walk the Great Wall of China, just at the moment, it’s a bit beyond my means… but I’m open to suggestions on how to achieve it.  Already, this year is shaping up to be one of the best ever. The most important thing of all is that I am going to see my son get married, which means having a new daughter and for that, I’m extremely excited…. I am going back to TAFE to study photography, which has been on my mind for a while…  I will see the fruits of my labour blossom in the garden I’ve been slogging my guts out to make…I have a few exciting new internet sites in the process of being built (more on that at a later date)  and I have visitors already planning their visits to me this year ( I love visitors)… so as much as it sounds like a busy year.. I intend to make it busier.

So to take a bit of inspiration (okay a lot) from Berocca’s Challenge Changer, I intend to take on the challenge of having to do one new thing every month.  I’m not game enough to do one per week for the year like she is doing, baby steps first.. So having set this challenge to myself.. Here’s where you all come into it.  I want you to make suggestions for me as to things I should try and I will make a list out of it for the top twelve and will set myself the task of completing one per month.

My Bucket List aka my soul cravings outlines the sorts of things I want to do before my time on this earth is through (years away yet if the Mayans were wrong) so maybe that will give you an idea of the sort of person I am.  Maybe there is something you do and love that you think I’ll enjoy trying.  Perhaps you’ve always wanted to do something but want me to test it out for you first (chicken) lol.  So I guess first up I have to set a challenge for January, then go from there.  Try to make it in my price range ($0 -$100) 🙂 but if it’s worth doing, I’ll try to find a way to do it regardless.  (friends may have to turn up for trivia nights lol)

I can tell you right up front, sky diving, bungee jumping and snake handling are completely off the list.  I want the challenges to be something I would want to do.  My intention isn’t to scare the crap out of myself.. but to step out and make 2013 the pivotal change I have needed for so long and I don’t see any need to change what I think about snakes.  I’m very comfy with my phobia, thank you very much.  Of course, I’m shamelessly open to being enticed into freebies and then writing about them, so don’t be afraid to offer me an all expenses paid trip to Ireland to write about your Castle which you’ve invited me to spend time in :).. A villa in the South of France could possibly tempt me too… Trust me… the story will be brilliant..

So put your thinking caps on folks.  I really want to hear what you think I should try that I haven’t tried before.  The last 51 years of my life have been fantastic in so many ways, yet so hard in others.  Having fought to find happiness again I am excited to make the rest of my life, the best of my life.  It’s my time!  Don’t just join me on the journey but set the path for me.  It’s in your hands now… Start me on the  challenge.  and while you’re at it…. set a challenge of some sort for yourself.  If the world doesn’t end tomorrow, I say it’s time to live…

Happy Challenging.. Livvy 🙂

choosing the best life