December Sanity Challenge

by Valerie on December 15, 2011 · 36 comments

december sanity challenge badge final

On Black Friday, I received an email from the indomitable Cheryl of Gluten-Free Goodness – remember her, we co-hosted a Self-Care Retreat back in July –  where she suggested a sanity challenge:

"The challenge—post on what you plan to do to make your holidays sane, happy and healthy.  Make it specific!  Not just “I’ll get more sleep," but “I’ll get at least 7 hours of sleep, 5 days a week”.  Not just “I won’t go crazy making desserts," but “I’ll make a maximum of XX desserts, and space them out over XX time”.  You know what you need to do to keep this doable, and writing it down will help you get there!"

It made complete sense, especially when December is traditionally a very intense month at my job, with long hours that leave little room for much beyond the routine. 

So, what am I doing for the December Sanity Challenge? 

I decided for my  main sanity challenge goal to be about movement, specifically working out 5-6 times a week, a minimum of 30 minutes a time, with a combination of vinyasa/flow yoga classes, the elliptical and lots of walking – Zumba too, but my schedule won’t allow me to get to a class until the last week of the month.  The 30 minute minimum is more for gym days, as the yoga classes I go to are either 60 or 75 minutes.  My second goal is to take a total of 4 restorative and/or yin yoga classes in December in addition to the flow yoga classes that are part of my routine. 

How am I doing? I am keeping up on the first challenge, but have only gotten in one restorative yoga class this month. Fortunately, there is still half the month left.  It has also made me think about how I feel about movement in my life – I used to resent days where the only me time would end up used at the gym or at yoga (as opposed to, say,  reading a magazine) but now I am more ok with it, which definitely helps in keeping up a movement routine.

My third goal was going to be meditation-related, but instead I actually picked something that a bit more immediate:

I decided to cut back on blogging this month.

Don’t get me wrong, blogging brings me tremendous happiness, but since October, the lunchbox posts have not come as easily, and so far, I have not found a way to restart them specifically or my near-daily blogging practice generally. So instead of feeling sad about it, I decided to embrace it.  There are close to 1200 posts on the blog, so there is plenty of content for you to discover (hint, look up at the drop-down menus), and I thought a lighter blogging month would be refreshing.

Honestly?  I miss writing as often as I did, so this exercise has made me think about how I want to go back to a daily blogging practice, and whether I want to use the lunchboxes for that, or a different framework. I loved writing the lunchbox posts for over a year – and I am not quite sure how they lost their charm.  I also picked this challenge because it meant I could focus more of my blogging time more on connecting with readers through email, comments and twitter

So yes, I picked three goals, and have had varying success in progress towards each.

You can participate in this December Sanity challenge too.  Write a post on what your goals are for this month and link back to this post (or any of the co-hosts listed below). Leave a comment with your link. Make yourself accountable by putting it in writing! Anyone who joins in on the December Sanity Challenge will be entered into a giveaway for a $50 gift certificate to (they are not sponsoring, Cheryl is just that awesome).

See what the other Sanity Challengers goals are:
December 1: Cheryl of
Gluten Free Goodness
Dec 8: Iris of Daily Dietribe 
Dec 22nd Carrie of
Ginger Lemon Girl

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Lexi December 15, 2011 at 7:35 pm

I think this is such an excellent challenge to do for yourself. Plus, as a regular reader I love having the chance to go back and read through your old posts. Especially from the beginning of your blogging days. Have you ever thought of doing something like the best of for times like this? Highlighting your favourite posts and re-posting them.


2 Valerie December 16, 2011 at 2:52 pm

Thank you Lexi. That is an excellent idea :)


3 Cheryl December 15, 2011 at 10:09 pm

I love your goals and I hope you’re able to move more toward movement. I do understand the double edged sword of blogging–I love it, but can be overwhelmed by it–and I love Lexi’s re-run idea.
So glad you’re joining us, and I would bet that the break will help you appreciate blogging more!


4 Valerie December 16, 2011 at 2:52 pm

Blogging is definitely double edged . I am going to do just a couple of posts a week this month – so not so much a blog break but blog-lite :)


5 JT @ The Faux Foodie Girl December 16, 2011 at 3:52 am

This challenge is exactly what I have been needing for a long time and it showed up in my Google Reader just in a right time… I love that you are doing something like new resolutions in December and not in January. And I especially like that the challenge is about three resolutions, it makes it so much more manageable.

Good luck!!!


6 Valerie December 16, 2011 at 2:51 pm

JT – such a treat to see you stop by. So glad the sanity challenge resonated with you :) I will be visiting your post later today!


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