Did you know that November was NaPodPoMo?
NaPodPoMo, for the uninitiated, is National Podcast Post Month. The challenge, which is in its 12th year, is for podcasters and would-be-podcasters to post one new podcast episode each day in November. That’s 30 podcast episodes in 30 days.
That’s no mean feat, since in my women’s podcasting facebook group a recent thread discussing time spent podcasting indicates most podcasters are spending 8+ hours per episode producing our podcasts, by the time you add up the recording, the editing, the posting, the promoting, the scheduling and all that jazz. And most of us have jobs and families and lives beyond podcasting as well. So it’s pretty impressive to think of taking a task like that on.
Google “November 30 day challenges” and you’ll find quite the list. It seems like every endeavor under the sun from exercising to meditating to walking to watching horror films has a 30 day challenge for November. The granddaddy of them all is, of course, NaNoWriMo, or National Novel Writing Month, which goes back to 1999 (that means it’s in its 20th year, people!) NaNoWriMo invites participants to write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days. As a past participant, I can tell you it’s quite the ride.
So what’s the draw of a 30 day challenge? Diving in and creating a lot of content in quick succession is a great way to jump start the creative process. If you have to churn out 1600+ words or a new podcast episode every day, you don’t have time to get stuck overthinking and if one day is a rough day you don’t have time to fixate on that because you get to do it again tomorrow. That’s terrifying…but liberating.
In my experience, the hardest part of any endeavor is starting it. Sustaining it is not easy, either, ask my NaNoWriMo draft from last year, but that is a priorities issue. Starting something in the first place is a confidence issue, which is what these challenges are designed to get around. It’s the creative equivalent of throwing you in the deep end and hoping you have a swimming instinct. Except if you fail you still have…something. Which is more that what you had before.
I’m in need of some confidence building at the moment as I look at some big goals for early 2019, including launching a new interview-style podcast (in addition to, not as a replacement of, NEW,) launching a new business and launching a new website. That’s a lot and the biggest thing keeping me from tacking any of it right now is, well, it’s scary. It’s hard to try new things. It’s hard to put yourself out there. There’s a reason it’s called a leap of faith.
So for November, I am attempting NaPodPoMo. An abridged version, as I do have a 12-week-old and I am not an insane person. I can’t physically put out 30 podcast episodes in November. Remember that 8 hour plus per episode thing? I simply do not have the bandwidth. But I can record them, which is what I am doing, and then release them in early 2019 to take a little of the pressure off while I try to do…all the things.
Watch this space. I’ll keep you updated on how it’s going, if I can find the time. In the meantime, don’t be afraid to try something scary this November. The jump is the hard part, the falling is exhilarating.