Slice 20 of 31: Challenges


Yesterday was a challenging day. Since what constitutes a challenge in my life pales in comparison to the real challenges faced every day by many, many others, I’ll spare you the details. When I sat down to write this, I intended to write something like, “I really don’t have the energy for writing tonight.” I pulled out my most recent journal with every intention of finding a halfway interesting entry and posting that. But then I got to thinking about the word challenge. Posting something I wrote a year ago didn’t seem like an acceptable offer to a challenge or to the friends I’ve made over the past few weeks. What does the word really mean, anyway? We all have a working definition in our head, but what does the dictionary say? The entry in my trusty World Book Dictionary (which came with the set we purchased when our oldest son started first grade in 1986) takes up more than half the column. The meanings of challenge as a verb are listed first:

  • “to call to a game or contest; dare”
  • “to call to fight” “to stop (a person) and question his right to do what he is doing or to be where he is”
  • “to demand proof before one will accept; call in question; doubt; dispute”
  • “to claim or command (effort, interest, or feeling)”

There were several other verb definitions, and the noun definitions were all variations on those for the verbs. The events of my day definitely claimed my feelings, commanded my interest, and my effort. And now that I’ve devoted more than 30 seconds of interest and effort to this post, I feel better. Not completely satisfied, but better. I didn’t back down in the face of a challenge.

Thank you to Stacey and Ruth at Two Writing Teachers for hosting this Slice of Life Challenge!

6 thoughts on “Slice 20 of 31: Challenges

  1. Wow! Reading those definitions of challenge gives me satisfaction. We are all faced with challenges on a regular basis. The definitions give me a sense of accomplishment of overcoming the odds.


  2. It’s so encouraging to know that challenges are opportunities, at the same time they are exhausting opportunities. Especially this time of year, when my challenges are all expectations that are not met. We get fatigued when we don’t see the rewards of hard work. Then I usually blame myself for not doing enough. I’ve been in this situation. Thank you for showing us one way of attempting to rise up after feeling beaten down. Bravo!


  3. Here are two more definitions from
    1. A test of one’s abilities or resources in a demanding but stimulating undertaking.
    2. To begin barking upon picking up a scent.
    The first I use in class many times a day, the second I will hopefully never use.
    I’ve made several new friends during the past weeks too and discovered some wonderful new (to me) blogs!


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