In the middle of last year, an older and wiser friend advised me to be open and try new things. I took what she said to heart and tried several new things last year.
During the summer of 2016, I decided to join a Toastmasters’ group to help me in public speaking because I wanted to improve in public speaking, build my self confidence, and network with others. First, I contacted my two friends who were part of Toastmasters and visited their clubs. After making mediocre improv speeches for two meetings, I didn’t feel ready to commit to a be a member. After that experience, I told my friend what I did and she was pleased. She encouraged me to keep trying new things and shared about the new things she was trying. Even though I wasn’t successful at becoming a member of Toastmasters, I was proud that got out of my comfort zone and conquered my some of fears.
After that experience, I decided to try something that I could accomplish more easily from start to finish. My next challenge was organizing a Friendsgiving feast. I knew I couldn’t make Friendsgiving a success without involving other friends because throwing a party for 20 people is a lot of work and I didn’t want to go over my head. Thus, I delegated different roles to different friends who wanted to help out such as activity coordinator, host, and sous-chef. By working together with my friends, we were able to make Friendsgiving an enjoyable evening for all the guests. Even after Friendsgiving, my friends still talked about how much fun they had at the party.
From these experiences, I learned the value of trying new things that I want to continue challenging myself. For the new year of 2017, I created my own initiative by trying something new each month called the Shine Brightly Project. By the end of 2017, I would have tried 12 new things. When I look back on why I was successful at trying new things, it has to due with accountability. Sometimes, I am my worst enemy that I do not have enough willpower to keep myself going and I can quickly become discouraged with myself. When another person is involved in encouraging me, I feel empowered and able to complete the task.
For the Shine Brightly Project, this blog is going to keep me accountable for trying something new each month and I will share with you the details of my challenges in my blog posts. Would you like to join me in the Shine Brightly Project? All you have to do is come up with one new thing you’d like to try each month. You don’t have to come up with all 12 things all at once, but you can come up with it the month before as you ponder about what you want to accomplish. It doesn’t have to be anything big and can be something small. It can be anything that is meaningful to you. If you’d like to join, I will help to keep you accountable and encourage you to be bold and take risks. Let’s all shine brightly in all that we say and do!