Ready to make some changes in your life?
We’ve put together a list of 30-day challenges that can help you get started on the path to a better you. This is more than simply eating healthier and getting more exercise, we’ve got a goal for everyone.
From self-care to financial challenges, we’ve curated a list of thoughtful, simple, yet impactful challenges that will make a difference.
Take on one challenge at a time or try out a few – it’s up to you! But we guarantee that if you stick with them, you’ll see results. So let the challenges begin!
Are you feeling like there’s a big difference between where you are and where you want to be?
Well, there’s no day like today to take the first step. And truly, that’s all it takes to get started, and you might surprise yourself with how even small steps build momentum.
As James Clear, author of the popular book Atomic Habits, says, “You do not rise to the level of your goals. You fall to the level of your systems.” Following a 30-day challenge helps you do exactly that, guiding you to build a consistent routine.
Ready to get started?
Think of something you want to change about your life. Break it down into small segments that you can do daily — even better if you can write down your plan, pen to paper. (And, of course, we have dozens of ideas below for inspiration if you need some help.)
Whether it pertains to your health, finances, happiness, or relationship, you can set yourself on a more successful path in only 30 days. In fact, others argue that forming a habit takes even less time. Regardless, know that in just a month, you’ll be in a better place than where you are today.
What matters is that consistent action is taken because it’s these small actions each day that build behaviors and habits that stick.
As we get closer to the end of this year and start planning for the new year, these 30-day challenge ideas can give you a fun way of changing things up in your life and building momentum for the future.
What is a 30-day challenge?
A 30-Day Challenge is an opportunity to commit yourself for a short duration of time (30 days) to a goal or intention that you have set.
The idea behind it is if you do something consistently every day, it will become easier with time and you’ll build a long-term habit. It’s a great way to start forming healthy habits and break bad ones.
In this article, we’ll offer five extremely comprehensive and structured challenges (with free PDF downloads) that we personally created along with 50+ highly-curated ideas with instructions and tips.
For couples, make sure you check out our list of the best challenges for couples.
Why do a monthly challenge?
Month long challenges allow you to focus on one particular goal or intention, which is critical for success. It’s a short enough time to commit, yet long enough to create a healthy habit.
All good 30-day challenges encourage you to track your progress. Having evidence that you’re getting better is a great way to stay motivated and push past the plateau.
Even if your goal isn’t easily measurable, marking a big “X” on the calendar every day that you did it will still provide that feeling of accomplishment. We recommend downloading our Habit Tracker Printable for this purpose!
How to do a 30-day challenge successfully?
These are tips to help you complete these challenges and feel accomplished.
1. Start small
Start smaller than you might think. Set yourself up for success and choose something you can realistically achieve within 30 days. The goal should be challenging enough to motivate you but also easily attainable.
For example, if you want to run every day, maybe your goal is simply to put on your sneakers and run to the end of the driveway. It’s likely you’ll go much further but easy enough that you’ll at least do it.
2. Write it down
Writing your challenge down, pen to paper, makes it more likely that you will follow through. Download our free habit tracker and print it, because you’re 42% more likely to achieve your goals if you write (not type) them down.
3. Track your progress
When you do something every day, it’s hard to see the improvements you’re making. Capture some “before” stats (like photos, measurements, etc.) that will help you see improvements at the end. You may need to get creative if what you’re doing isn’t easy to quantify.
4. Find an accountability partner
One of the most impactful things you can do is to find someone who will do the challenge with you. Whether it’s your partner or a friend, checking in will keep you both on track.
5. Make it public
Post about it on social media and tell family, friends, and coworkers what you’re up to. Maybe they’ll join. Regardless, you’ll feel the social pressure to continue!
6. Celebrate small wins
Acknowledge every step of progress you make and reward yourself for completing the challenge. At the minimum, enjoy the satisfaction of marking a big “X” on your calendar daily!
7. Stay consistent
It’s extremely easy to get derailed. If you miss a day, do your best not to miss it twice in a row. Pick up where you left off and keep on going.
Maybe you only do your challenge 20 out of the 30 days, and while you should strive to do them all, it may be 20 more days than last month.
OUr 30-day challenges
We love a good challenge and find that the most successful ones have a calendar and structured plan to follow.
The below 30-day challenges are ones that we’ve created. They’re comprehensive, thoughtfully designed, and effective. Each of them has a free downloadable PDF. Good luck!
1. 30-Day Weight Loss Challenge
Our most popular challenge: the 30-Day Weight Loss Challenge
For 30 days, forget about all you know about weight loss and simply focus on tracking five numbers. Based on years of coaching experience and backed by science, these are the numbers that will move the needle.
By following this challenge and tracking your progress daily, you’ll be able to identify trends and finally move towards your weight loss goal. Are there certain days when you tend to eat more? Get less sleep? Does your diet lack fiber? You can’t make a great weight loss plan without first knowing where you truly start.
2. 30-Day Gratitude Challenge
The effects of practicing gratitude are far-reaching. Studies show that people who practice gratitude tend to eat healthier, get sick less often, and have higher satisfaction in their relationships.
We share the science behind gratitude in our article, 30-Day Gratitude Challenge (Free PDF included).
For 30 days, we share easy, actionable items for you to practice gratitude in a variety of ways and themes. Baking cookies for your neighbors, giving yourself permission to sleep in, and listing silver linings from three past “bad” situations are some of our favorites.
3. 30-Day Ab Challenge
Get ready to work your core with 30 new moves, one new move per day.
Targeting all major core muscles from your obliques to your rectus abdominus (the muscles most associated with a 6-pack), you’ll notice not just your ab muscles, but improved balance and stability once you’re done.
Follow along with our full article, 30-Day Ab Challenge, for videos of each move and the free, downloadable calendar.
4. 30-Day Declutter Challenge
After living in nine countries this past decade, we know a few things about decluttering and packing up.
We share our strategy and how-to guide in tackling your home, no matter how long you’ve been there and how much stuff you’ve accumulated. As a bonus, we also share different ways to get rid of your clutter — including how it can make you money.
This 30-Day Declutter Challenge comes with another free, printable PDF.
5. 30-Day Plank Challenge
A fan favorite. We love a good plank, which works not just your core but also tests your upper body strength to no end. Made for beginners and intermediate athletes, work up to holding a 5-minute plank by Day 30.
In between, we share our favorite plank variations from “High-plank Bird-Dog” to “High Reverse Plank Dips.” They’re tough, but you’re tougher.
We demonstrate each plank move with a video and you’ll track progress on the free, 30-Day Plank Challenge downloadable PDF.
Health and Fitness 30-Day Challenge Ideas
Still looking for the perfect 30-day challenge? Here are health and fitness-related challenge ideas to inspire you. Pair them with our free downloadable habit tracker and get into a healthy routine, one day at a time.
Drink 8 glasses of water daily
It’s best to leave a glass of water on your nightstand and drink it first thing. Or, set the goal of drinking a gallon of water a day.
Head to bed by 9:30 PM
The exact time is up to your but make sure you’re consistent. Make sure you’re sleeping 7-9 hours a night. Health is your greatest wealth and you’ll go broke without sleep.
Eat 3-servings of vegetables a day
Of all the contradicting advice and diets out there, one thing is infallible: eat more plants. Here are some creative ways to sneak more veggies into your day.
Walk 30-minutes a day
It’s best to walk outside. Follow our 8-Week Weight Loss Walking Plan for 30 days and we bet you’ll continue!
Cut out added sugar
You’ll need to read a lot of nutrition labels. That act alone will help you select better food items with ingredients that you can pronounce.
Write in a food journal
Mindful and intuitive eating are trendy these days for a good reason. Write down everything you eat, journal about how you feel, and watch how your health improves.
Start intermittent fasting
It’s not a diet, it’s an eating method. But, it’s scientifically proven to improve your health and your waistline. For support and guides, check out our Fasting page.
Remove fast food and soda
If you care about your health and still drink soda or eat fast food, this is top priority. Here’s how (and why) to quit drinking soda.
Eat one home-cooked meal a day
Cook these five healthy recipes in bulk and you’re covered for the first half of the challenge!
Blend up a smoothie for breakfast every day
Get creative and add in a banana, frozen spinach, blueberries, or greek yogurt. Add a scoop of a nutritious shake and you’re set. According to the data, these are the best meal replacement shakes on the market.
Practice yoga for 15 minutes
Here is a free couples yoga routine.
Use a standing desk for 1 hour
If you’ve never tried, the health benefits will astound you. Just make sure you transition properly to a standing desk.
Sit with perfect posture for 20 minutes
If you need a way to track this, those funky posture correcting devices actually work.
Do a 10-minute workout daily
Bonus if you follow a structured workout program like Tony Horton’s 10-minute trainer. According to our in-depth research and experience, these are the 8 most effective workout programs.
Check in with a workout accountability group
Surround yourself with like minded people with similar goals. You can join our accountability group here.
Quit caffeine cold turkey
Too much caffeine is bad for your health. Quit cold turkey and see how you feel. After the 30 days is up, feel free to add a coffee or tea back into your morning routine.
Relationship 30-Day Challenge Ideas
Focusing on your relationship every day is one of the most meaningful ways to spend a month. Not only will you learn more about each other, but you’ll grow as a couple.
- Speak your partner’s Love Language daily (track it with the Love Nudge App)
- Make time to eat a meal together — better if you cook it together!
- Try a month of the best couples therapy app (our first week was groundbreaking)
- Leave love notes around the house every day
- Join your partner’s hobbies (or pick a new hobby as a couple)
- Send a text to your partner randomly — sweet or steamy!
- Play a 2-player board game together
- Play “Would You Rather” every night
- Start a book club and read together every night (here are the best books for couples)
- Kiss and hug your partner
- Genuinely ask your partner a new “conversation starter” every day and listen
- Exercise together and use your partner as your workout buddy and accountability partner
- Plan a themed at-home date night
- Give your partner a nightly massage for a few minutes (extra credit for taking a massage course!)
Mental Health and Happiness 30-Day Challenge Ideas
Self-care is more than just a buzzword but an essential part of your overall health. Consider these 30-day challenge ideas to help you rebalance and reset to make it your happiest month yet.
- Perform a random act of kindness
- No screen time after 8pm
- Read 3 pages in a book
- Start up a conversation with a stranger every day
- Create a morning routine
- Follow a meditation app for 5 minutes
- Declutter one cabinet a day
- Share a joke with your family
- Write for 10 minutes in a journal
- Donate one item
- Say out loud 3 things that you’re grateful for
- Spend 10 minutes on a childhood hobby
- Go outside and get 15 minutes of sunlight
- Do not go on social media after 6pm
- Email a friend or family member
- Pay a compliment to someone different every day
- Volunteer each day
- Watch one TedTalk daily
Money and Finance 30-Day Challenge Ideas
Working on bettering your finances and money lends itself well to a 30-day challenge. These challenges will help you increase your wealth, which can be accomplished by saving more, spending less, or earning more.
- Track and write down every expenditure
- Create a daily budget and stick to it
- List one item on Facebook Marketplace or Poshmark daily
- Spend 20 minutes a day exploring side gig opportunities
- Work on your family finances (talk together, research a plan, set it in motion)
- Start a business or passion project
- Find a new way to save money (reevaluate subscriptions, negotiate better rates, etc.)
- Work up to asking your boss for a raise
- Read 5 pages of a finance book every night
- Poll a friend, mentor, or family member about their money strategies daily
- Pay off debt a few dollars (like $25) every day
- Avoid making one purchase every day — and see if you still need it by the end of the month
- Save $1 on Day 1, $2 on Day 2, $3 and Day 3, and so forth. Invest it when the month is done
30-Day Challenge Ideas For Creative Pursuits
Giving yourself space and freedom to follow a creative hobby is one of the funnest 30-day challenges that you can do!
While sometimes we think of creative pursuits as a challenge to get set up, create a space and keep your things at the ready to keep it easy and simple. And of course, have fun with it!
- Sketch a someone you know in 2 minutes and gift them the drawing
- Spend 10 minutes painting
- Knit three rows
- Play guitar before bed every night
- Study a new language for 5 minutes
- Listen to one episode of a MasterClass while brushing your teeth
- Ferment something like kombucha, sourdough starter, or kefir yogurt.
Personal Development and Productivity 30-Day Challenge Ideas
What if we could get a tiny bit better every day? Learning and working on ourselves is one of the most rewarding and eye-opening things we can do. Here are 30-day challenge ideas to motivate and inspire you.
- Write a to-do list every morning
- Tackle the biggest problem of the day first
- Read 3 pages of a personal development book
- Listen to a personal development podcast episode
- Be on time for everything
- Pause and think before complaining
- Make your bed in the morning
- Organize your digital files
- Take 3 minutes every night to visualize the next day’s accomplishments
Which 30-Day Challenge are you starting this month? There’s no time like today to get started. Make sure, whatever you choose, that you make a daily plan and track your progress along the way.
The list doesn’t need to end there. Keep on working towards bettering yourself a bit more every day. And if you’re doing multiple challenges at once, don’t forget to download our free Habit Tracker to keep organized and on target.
Let us know in the comments below your best 30-Day Challenges.
Printable Goal Setting Worksheet PDF
Download our simple goal setting worksheet, print it, and draft a smart plan to achieve your goals.
Included is goal setting worksheet example to guide you.
Hey we're Ryan and Alex
The creators of Ryan and Alex Duo Life. We are a husband-wife duo and “lifestyle engineers.”
After eight years working in the corporate world as engineers, we left our high-powered jobs to tackle our true passion — helping couples engineer their best lives.
The synergy of our engineering minds and ten years of health coaching experience produced Ryan and Alex Duo Life. Our mission is to help you transform your bodies, minds, and relationship as a couple.
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