Day 1 – The Challenge

Day 1

Welcome to the 1st day of the 30 Day Happiness Challenge!

In today’s post I break down what the challenge is, how it’s going to work, and what you’ll learn over the next 30 days.

This post is basically a recap of the information I shared during the Kick-Off event yesterday.So if you watched that event you can skip to Challenge #1 at the end.


Ok so let’s get down to business:

Why am I here?

I’m here because I used to look for happiness in all the wrong places. I tried to find it in crazy adventures, inappropriate relationships, and wild parties. But when I was 28 I lost the best job I’d ever had and I suddenly realized that although I’d been having ‘fun,’ I wasn’t happy with myself or my life.

And so I dramatically changed the way I lived. I abandoned my career to spend 2+ years living in a Zen Monastery and when I got out, I spent 2 more years studying habits and working with clients as a mindfulness expert. Through these experiences, I learned a lot about what it takes to be happy day after day.

And I’m here to share these simple tools with you, so you can:

  • Avoid the mistakes I’ve made and I’ve seen so many others make,
  • Realize that happiness is something you can create no matter where you are,
  • Create the kind of happiness in your life that will touch everyone around you.


Why are you here?

You’re here because you want to be happy. After all, who doesn’t right? Well as surprising as it sounds, I meet a lot of people who don’t want to be happy.

They say they want to be happy, but they don’t work at it, don’t make it a priority, and aren’t willing to let go to their old ideas and habits.

They want to be happy like someone who wants a job but never opens the classifieds or fills out a job application. And maybe that’s something you can relate to.

Or maybe you’ve been working on happiness but something is standing in your way.

  • Maybe you feel disconnected from what brings that joy and catch yourself checking your phone all the time because you feel anxious or alone.
  • Maybe you feel stressed or burned out, but you never make time for yourself and when you do you feel guilty about it.
  • Maybe you feel scattered and disorganized, can never find your car keys, and you wonder if you’ll break Gmail because your inbox is so full.
  • Or maybe you struggle in relationships. You stay quiet because you don’t want to fight, and when you do speak up, you end up getting so upset you have to apologize.

Sound familiar?

No matter what obstacles are standing in your way, there is something in this challenge for you.

Over the next 30 Days, you’re going to create the tools that lead to huge changes in happiness. You’re going to learn little by little how to overcome these obstacles and create a happiness engine that will churn out good feelings day in and day out.

I’ve broken down the challenge into 4 Phases:

  • In Phase 1: You’ll learn about Awareness, so you can understand yourself better and stop repeating the same mistakes.
  • In Phase2: You’ll learn about Self Care and how to do it without feeling guilty, so that you have more energy everyday.
  • In Phase 3: You’ll learn about Simplicity, so you can simplify everything in your life from you schedule to your sock drawer and save time, money, and a lot of heartache.
  • In Phase 4: You’ll learn about Relationships, specifically how to listen deeply and speak skillfully, so that you can create deeper connection and overcome conflict.

Every morning you’ll get an email with a short post about the challenge for that day.

Each Challenge has 3 Elements:

  1. Practice: This is the exercise, meditation, or focus you’ll be working on for the day.
  2. Reflect: After you do the daily practice take a few minutes and reflect. What did you learn? What did you struggle with?
  3. Share: This is the final and MOST IMPORTANT step. Because if you don’t share what you learn the lessons won’t stick. Plus when you share, you’ll be encouraging everyone to remember to do his or her practice.

How to Share:

There are 3 ways you can share what you learned or what you’re working on.

1. Write a Blog Post: If you want to get the most out the challenge DO THIS! Writing is the one of the most powerful tools for creating self-knowledge. Plus as you write you’ll be creating a record that will help you remember what you learned.

Once you’ve written the post, make sure you link or trackback to the challenge post, or post a link in the comments. I’ll do my best to read every post, comment on it, and share it in the group.

2. Social Media: If you’re short on time, a little shy, or adverse to writing this is the way to go. All you have to do is share one thing you learned or one question you had.

Please use hashtag #30dayhappy and or share with our Facebook group, which can be found here

Again I’ll do my best to read, respond, and reshare your posts.

3. Comments: If you want to share something more private or don’t do Facebook, simple respond to each challenge in the comments section of the daily post.

It’s that simple:

  • Read the email
  • Try the Practice
  • Share what you learned.

Which brings us to Challenge #1

  1. Practice: Think about how you’d like your life to change over the next 30 days and write down one intention or goal that you have for this 30 day Challenge.

You could vow to read every post and try the practice before lunch. Or you could set a goal to use this challenge to be nicer to your family. It doesn’t’ matter what your goal is, so long as you make one.

2. Reflect: After writing the goal pause and ask yourself, “Do I think this is doable?” If it is, great! If not, why not?

3. Share: OK now it’s time to share. You can either write a blog post about your goal for the challenge, post your goal to social media (#30dayhappy or , or you share your goal in the comments below.

Go ahead do it now . . . I’ll wait

Hair Face Small



DONE? Awesome!

You’ve just completed Day 1 of the 30 Day Happiness Challenge so make sure to thank yourself.

Tomorrow Morning you will get Challenge #2: Which will be about the importance of awareness of mindfulness in your life.As always, you’ll be able to find an archive of all the old posts by going to

Thanks so much! I’m really excited to get started on this challenge and if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask.

Be Well,


29 thoughts on “Day 1 – The Challenge

  1. My intention is to try every practice once, and if I find it helpful (or think it could be helpful when done daily) incorporate it into my daily routine. I have a difficult time changing my routine, so this could be the toughest part of the challenge. But, I think it will be worth the effort!

    1. That’s a great goal Barbara. I tell my clients all the time, if you think something will help try it and if you like it keep it. I’m constantly trying new habits and letting them go if they don’t fit.
      Thanks for sharing your goal!

    1. Sorry the Pingback isn’t working 🙁 but thanks for posting the comment. I checked and they are enabled for me. Great simple post and great goal. I’m some pumped that you started a blog just for the challenge 🙂 Thanks for sharing.

  2. My goal is to be mindful of how I move in my body each day. I find that when I ignore my body, I am not present.

    1. That’s a great goal Tami. One simple way to do that is to do that is to find moments when you cat reconnect with your body throughout the day. The Day 3 Challenge on breathing will be helpful as well. Thanks for sharing.

  3. I look forward to trying each daily challenge. The scariest part of this process is publishing my thoughts in the public domain. This is my fourth rewrite of two sentences. My aim will be to post a comment to each challenge without regretting what I write.

    1. YES! That’s a great goal!!! This is a SAFE space. I’m so glad you are being brave and were willing to share. Thank you! I think I can speak for everyone when I say we are glad to have you. 🙂

  4. Goal: I must be more serious about finding a job. Motivation, discipline have been real struggles for me lately

    Yes, I think this is doable.

  5. My Goal is to try very hard NOT to get behind on the challenges and to take at least 30 minutes everyday to just sit down and relax. I’m very excited and looking forward to building relationships with everyone as we go through this together

  6. I didn’t get a chance to do this yesterday but my goal is to start a blog and write at least one post every week for this challenge. I’ve wanted to start a blog for the last year but haven’t and now I have something to write about! I know I can do it. Thanks for this challenge Toku.

    1. Post here is just fine. If you want to use a trackback simply post a link to my post inside your and it should connect them automatically if you have trackbacks turned on. If it doesn’t posting your link in the comments will do nicely.
      Thanks for sharing.

  7. Ok! So now I know how to leave comments 🙂 Let me catch up!
    My goal is to what I need to do for every day’s challenge, to finish it! That’d be a very exciting start to my new year.
    My intention in this challenge is to find ways to tame my temper and be a happier person! I’m turning 35 on Wednesday and if I’m able to improve on that, it’d make my life and everybody’s lie around me so much better. So here we go!

  8. My goal is to have a healthier, calmer life. I live overseas and my husband and I both work demanding jobs that require a lot of social events. There is hardly a week where we are home with free time in the evenings or on the weekends. Life is a frantic pace right now and it causes us to let go of the things that enrich our lives, like spending time together or as a family, reading, writing, and exercising. I somehow missed the first several days of challenges, (Wi-Fi isn’t always reliable so our connectivity isn’t the best) but I want to commit to taking care of myself and my relationships. I want to find ways to eliminate things from my calendar, and to have energy to make positive choices when I have unscheduled time.

  9. Hi Sam! I found your site courtesy of Leo Babauta. I know the challenge is over but I’m going to follow along so watch out for me! My intention with this challenge is to use it to just be comfortable “being” and not having to constantly “do”. So many things have been going great for me lately but i’ve been too stressed out (about what you ask? I don’t know either) to notice.

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