I’m doing the 75 Soft Challenge

Yes, I’m making a lifestyle change based on a TikTok video I saw. This is like peak 2021, but I’m okay with it.

What is the 75 Soft Challenge?

It developed as a response to the viral 75 Hard Challenge that is, in my opinion, unsustainable and unhealthy. Some of the rules include following a diet like Keto or Whole30, working out for an hour and a half every day, and no alcohol or cheat meals or you start over at Day One.

75 Soft is a gentler approach that encourages attainable lifestyle change while still setting guidelines for that change. I don’t know who started it, and I take no credit for it, but here are MY 75 Soft Challenge rules.

Do these four things every day for 75 days:

  1. Eat mindfully, whatever that means to you
  2. Work out for 45 minutes
  3. Drink 1 gallon of water
  4. Read 10 pages of any book (audiobooks or podcasts count, too)

The 75 Soft Challenge is NOT a weight-loss program. To me, it’s about living with intention and making choices that are good for my mind and body. So let’s unpack these “rules” a bit.

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Not to be dramatic, but working from home changed my life

I will remember March 17th, 2020 for the rest of my life. It’s one of those rare memories that sticks in your brain in such vivid detail. I can see the florescent lights and glittery green St. Patrick’s Day decorations throughout our corner of the office building, I can hear the click-clacking of 20 or so keyboards from around the room, and I can smell the cold cup of coffee with hazelnut creamer sitting at my desk.

On March 17th, 2020 my supervisors walked through our department and had us all shut our phones off to go into a meeting. As we all ended our calls and ceased our furious typing, the office fell silent for the first time in weeks. We gathered in the cafeteria where we were told to space out six feet apart from each other. I looked left and right at my gal pals, and thought how weird it is to be standing, far apart from each other, and in the cafeteria of all places when meetings used to be held in the small conference room where we would huddle together around the table and whisper snide comments to each other and try not to laugh.

“We have made the decision that our department will work from home for the time being,” my manager said. “IT will be coming around tomorrow to help box up your monitors and all of your equipment.”

That week we said “goodbye” and “see you soon” to our co-workers, to our office family. We weren’t supposed to, but we hugged each other. We thought we may be gone only a few weeks or a few months.

Ten months later my company had a new standup desk and chair delivered to my home. We aren’t going back. In just a few days it will be one year since I started working from home full time.

There was definitely an adjustment period at first, and I still have bittersweet moments, but it has been a blessing. Like I said– not to be dramatic, but working from home has changed my life. Here’s how.

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