Introducing #Insiders4AChallege

"our-scrappy-a-team" altogether around a restaurant table being goofy

23 out of every 25 people that make new year’s resolutions break them. Have you ever wondered if there was a formula to make resolutions stick? Do you want YOUR resolutions for YOUR life to become real?

Imagine yourself in a strange new place. You do not have a map, you cannot read the signs, and there is no one you can turn to for help. All you know is you want to get to a place that someone described to you as a tall building with glass doors. Crazy, right? Turns out most resolutions that people make are like this: a journey to some vaguely defined place with no map and no assistance along the way.

People nearly always start their resolutions with a noble goal in mind. We tell ourselves “I want to lose weight”, or “I want to learn a new skill”, or “I want to be more creative”. All laudable intentions, for sure. But goals like these lack three things that are important to make them stick:

  1. Specificity
  2. Accountability
  3. Support

A goal that is not specific will inevitably fail you. How do you get to that destination when all you know is it is a tall building with glass doors? You need specifics, not only in the goal, but in your plan to achieve it. A plan gives you an algorithm, a list of activities you can perform instead of just an end goal you aspire to.

That is the basis of the first piece of the #Insiders4AChallenge formula: Turn your resolution into a Challenge. How do you make a good challenge for yourself? Make it realistic but difficult and make it about activities that you can be accountable for as days tick by. Be sure that these activities will lead you to your end goal.

Instead of resolving to “lose weight”, challenge yourself to “Be active 30 minutes a day every day”. Instead of simply aspiring to creativity, challenge yourself to “write a blog post at least once a week”. Instead of “I want to learn a new skill”, challenge yourself to “Finish an online course on computer programming and build a website”.

The second piece of the #Insiders4AChallenge formula is this: Declaring your challenge aloud makes it real. Until you do so, it is just a thought in your head. We have 50000 thoughts a day and we do not act on most of them. Let your goals be more than a fleeting thought.

A year is long, filled with days of temptations, distractions, ennui and so many other things that can throw you off track. Some days will be harder than others. Some days you will feel like you have had enough with your goal. This is why we all need a community of people to support us. And what better community than our magnificent #Insiders to rely on for this?

So that is the third and final piece of the #Insiders4AChallenge formula: Use the Insider community to support you. The community here is not just there to bring you back on track when you veer off, but we can make this fun. Why can’t someone else adopt your challenge and do it with you? Maybe someone else wants to be creative too this year, and perhaps they can join you in your challenge. You can share notes on your journeys to the same goal.

At this point some of you might wonder: but what does this have to do with Insiders? Aren’t Microsoft Insiders a group of people providing early feedback on Microsoft products? Well, we see our Insiders differently.

Our Insiders are not just people that make us better. We see them as a wonderful family of people that wants to make the world a better place. We empower every individual on the planet.

Making the world a better place starts with one person and fans out. It starts with you, your neighbor, your friends, your like-minded community. Humans excel in not just making great tools – and we know all about that, don’t we? – but in making great societies. Let’s make this a great society, Insiders!!

So here is what you do to get in on this fun:

  • Think of an area you want to get better at and make a #Insiders4AChallenge challenge for yourself. Make it realistic and difficult. Make it an activity, or a set of activities, that leads to your goal. It can be around career, your personal life, your involvement in your community, your family or something completely out of the blue.
  • Write a blog post here declaring that challenge to our community. Tag it with #Insiders4AChallege. Invite others to support you, and perhaps adopt your challenge.
  • Come back regularly and share how you are doing, always using the tag #Insiders4AChallege.

Our Insiders are the millions that represent the billions, and they all get to follow you on your journey. How AWESOME is that?!

80% of success is showing up. We are #Insiders after all, known for our incredible drive to show up and reach for bigger and better things. Our invitation to you all is this: Challenge yourself constantly. Hustle. Show up here. Share your journey. Help others.

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