Challenge: Meditate in public and don’t warn anybody that you’re going to meditate.
We had a block party today. After finishing my grilled burger amongst neighbors, I realized I had forgotten to meditate. So without explanation, I closed my eyes and began.
What Happened: People were accepting of what I was doing, even though they didn’t know I was meditating.
One friend was leaving and wanted to say good bye. She attempted to interact with me, “Dash, are you there?” Since I wasn’t answering or moving she kissed me on the forehead and left. She was very amused and said, “This is what I live for.” It was a strange remark and incited some giggles amongst the group.
I thought people might get annoyed at me for not responding to them but people were very accepting and amused. Even joyful about it.
What I expected: I thought I would be annoyed when someone would talk about or to me while I meditated. But I just laughed because it was funny that I couldn’t answer. I thought people would be annoyed at me and try to get me to stop meditating.
What I learned: I learned people were more accepting than I thought. I thought I would be more annoyed. I thought all sorts of judgements and annoyances would happen but none of it did.
Bonus Challenge: Ask someone a deep question
My original challenge for the day was to ask someone at the block party, “What are your life goals and are they different from when you were younger?”
I only half accomplished this, and so I took on the meditation challenge instead. But I still learned a lot from attempting this one.
Why do this challenge: I enjoy, but am uncomfortable asking, deep questions. I usually stick to small talk which I find boring. I want to push myself to get deep with others. I want to push myself to do what I want, even when I fear discomfort, disapproval, or failure.
What’s uncomfortable about it: I might not ask this question elegantly. I might come off as a weirdo. People might not want to answer.
What happened: I didn’t want to ask the question in an abrupt way. I felt I needed to romance the person before I asked such an intimate question. What was interesting about this tactic was that it got me to ask great questions and listen intently, for, I felt, I may discover an entry point to asking my “objective question” if I pay attention to this person.
I had great conversations with the two people I tried to ask the question to, even though I only half asked the question to one person and didn’t find the opportunity for the other.
I half asked the question to the one person by asking if what they are doing now for a living is what they saw themselves doing when they were young. And I asked them what their dream job is now. So, I didn’t ask about life goals, just career goals.
They said they thought they would be a pilot but they like their job now (operations for the charter planes at United). I remembered seeing him playing on our block with toy airplanes. He said his dream job would be something similar to what he is doing now.
What I learned: I learned having an “objective deep question” in mind is a good trick for getting to know someone. I see the parallels between this experience and trying to get laid. You need to romance your partner before you go in for the end goal. You can’t just get intimate right away! Or can you? Perhaps that’s another discomfort to challenge!
Shlomo’s Challenge: Wear heels in public
I’m sharing my spouse’s challenge today. He wore women’s heels at the block party.
Some things you should know:
- Shlomo is a guy.
- He is not into cross dressing.
Shlomo took on this challenge to confront the discomfort of possible judgements and glares.
To Shlomo’s surprise, people were really accepting of his heels.
A bunch of women wanted him to try their shoes on.
One of the women offered to take him on a spa date and now they have plans for two spa days, totally paid for by this lady.
What Shlomo Learned: Shlomo said he learned people were more accepting than he thought. But he thought if he wasn’t so beautiful maybe they wouldn’t be so accepting. I agree, he is beautiful and can get away with anything.
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