What is the lure of a challenge? What is it that hooks us and reels us in? That convinces us to step outside our comfort zone? In this post I explore five reasons we take on a challenge.
1. A challenge is a break from routine. Usually a challenge involves accomplishing something we have not yet achieved. So a challenge has newness. It brings novelty into our life
2. A challenge sparks our creativity. In meeting a challenge we discover new approaches to what might be old problems. We can’t succeed at a worthy challenge by merely left-braining our way through. We have to access our creative side.
3. A challenge gives us a chance to learn. In fact, a worthy challenge triggers an incredibly steep learning curve. It makes us feel young again. When you are a toddler, there is so much to learn—motor skills, language, how to feed ourselves—that all of life is a challenge. As we grow up, we lose the feeling of exhilaration that accompanies great strides in learning. A good challenge can bring that feeling back.
4. A challenge brings out the best in us, because it requires us to use all our skills and abilities—to perform at 100%. Operating at 80% is enough to get most jobs done excellently once you have mastered them, but it just doesn’t feel as good as 100% performance.
5. Some of us are just adrenalin junkies. ‘Nuff said.
If you are raising children, especially those under the age of seven, you benefit from all these aspects of challenge every day. When our children are grown, we can either settle in at 60, 70 or 80 percent, or we can seek new challenges. I vote for 100%. How about you?
What aspects of challenge appeal most to you? Are there some I have overlooked? Let’s talk about it. Leave a reply!