Rick's Journal

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Ricardo Sierra's Earth Skills Seven Day Challenge, June 1-7, 2014

I created this event to show people the power of connecting to the earth and nature through practicing earth skills just 15-20 minutes each day, for seven days.     I call in The Seven Day Challenge, and it's coming up on June 1, 2014.   Check out the video, too, that introduces what it's all about!

It's pretty simple.   You pick a skill that you can practice or study, and you commit to doing it every day, for just seven days!!!!!!!    And you will be amazed at how fast your learning takes off in just minutes a day......

Anyway, you can get more info about it on my web page,here.
If you know you want to do it, just click here to join our Facebook Group and get in on the fun!   It's going to be inspiring and awesome! 

Bird Language & Studies
As you know, Attitude and Mindset are two of the most essential ingredients for achieving our goals, and this challenge is no different.  It's time to get prepared, so we not only learn new skills, but we add a layer of confidence and self esteem boost to the week as well.   It's a powerful one-two combination that will spread from this activity to the other parts of your life as well.

Wouldn't that be nice?   Are you into it?    

Okay, so, here is a list of things that you will want to be prepared for:  

You can do Plant Studies!
Commitment:   What skills are you committing to practice for the Seven Days, and when will you practice them?   Try to remember to keep it simple and that 15-20 minutes goes by quick, so this is a good time to also practice realistic planning skills!   It's also a good time to think about why you want to learn these earth skills, and what your greater purpose is for practicing and learning them, and whether or not you are actually serious about growing closer to the earth or setting yourself up to learn.

If you look a head to your week and it's just too full for you, that's okay.  You can modify your personal agreement and no one will know the difference.  We don't judge!   The bottom line is that, whatever your specific commitment is to yourself, make sure that you are really committed to doing it and plan for success!   That being said, 15 minutes a day for seven days is pretty much doable for just about everyone, if you really want to learn new skills and grow.   So, be bold!   Let's do this!

Safety:   Is the skill you are practicing something that uses knives, or sharp tools or stone edges?  Do you have a safety plan for your practice that includes eye or ear protection, and is there a First Aid Kit present at all times?  Do you have to protect against breathing in dust or smoke?   If you are going out in the bush for your daily practice, does everyone in your group of skills enthusiasts know what poison ivy looks like at this time of year, or do you need to be aware of ticks or other local hazards, like snakes or black flies?   If you plan ahead for these things, you will be setting you and your group up for good times!   
Buckskin & Tanning Skills

Materials and Supplies:   Does the skill you have chosen have a materials list, or tools or supplies needed in order to get it accomplished?   Go over it in your planning so you know if you will need sandpaper, or string or a bunch of willow shoots or whatever it is you will need to make this happen!  If you get those things ready prior to Sunday, June 1st, you will be all ready to go to let your skills grow right off the bat, rather than spend that time searching your gear or looking in your garage for your stuff.   Make sure that if you are doing this with friends, that you let them know what they will need to bring if anything, and that they wear the right clothing for the weather, etc.

Daily Celebration and Final Celebration Incentives:   Everyone loves to have some incentives, especially when we complete a difficult task or achieve a goal that we really are excited about, and this is no different.   Typically, people will celebrate with food or a beverage that they enjoy, in a circle of friends, or maybe an outing or getting a tool that they have long wanted.   We don't need to go crazy here, but all I am saying is, "Give yourself every reason to make this a positive, successful experience, rather than a let down where you only go half-way and don't make it through the whole week."    
Celebrate Your Campfire Cooking Skills!

A reward will sometimes keep you going when your attention starts to wander, so, make sure that a person you trust will help keep you honest and then verify you did this challenge and award your prize!

On the flip side, some people tend to do things because they are motivated by the potential loss of something.   I have a friend who is an athlete, and she has an agreement where she will give $100 to her training partners if she misses a training session for a non-injury related excuse.   This keeps her honest and her team holds her accountable for her commitments, so it's all part of knowing yourself and how you want to set yourself up for success.

If you are doing this challenge with friends, or especially with kids, I would definitely plan on celebrating with something at the end, and even a great snack each session, too, just to keep it fun.

Contingency Plans:   On Saturday, it rained here at Hawk Circle really, really hard, on and off, pretty much all day.  It was really wet.   I immediately thought of everyone getting ready for this challenge and said 'We need some contingency plans so we all can stay on track!"   

So, what is your back up plan?   Do you have a sheltered place to go if you start experiencing rain or intense heat or dust or whatever is happening in your local area?   How will you adapt your activity if there is inclement weather to still get your practice in?
Carving Skills

You see, what I am training you and your group to do, is to not let yourselves off the hook when something comes up.   You still have to honor your commitment and get your goal accomplished.   If we let ourselves off the hook because of a little rain, or because the traffic made you late, or whatever the situation is, you will start to create a pattern of not accomplishing your goals.    You will get the mindset that it's okay to let it all go, as long as you have an excuse.   Which is not a good habit, in earth skills or in any other venture in our lives.   Seriously, this type of thinking is outright poison to your dreams and vision.  (Not to mention the damage it does to your personal relationships.)    

So, that means, you have to have a mind that says 'I always finish what I start, no matter what."   

This is a very, very powerful mindset that will help you and your kids or your friends throughout their life.

So, what could go wrong or have a potential to derail your plans?   
Do you have a group doing this?   What will you do if no one shows up?   Will you still practice it anyway, for yourself?

Phone a Friend:   Who is your go-to source for help if you get stuck in your practice?   Are you prepared to reach out if you need help, either to one of your friends, or a mentor or teacher, or someone in our Facebook Group?   Let us know if you need help, and I promise you, there is a ton of help all around you, all the time.  (Just like in Nature!)

 You just need to ask for what you need!

Accountability and Inspiration:  One way that I have set up this challenge is to invite you to post a short update on what you did in our Facebook Group!  You can share what you learned, what you did, and a photo or short video.   This will allow you to know that you are staying on track, and if everyone is doing it, we will all see your progress, comment on your work and give you 'mad props' for making it happen!   It will feel good. You will also be inspiring others to keep going, too.   Feel free to share your trials and tribulations, and what you did to keep going.   I promise you, whatever you are working on or working through, you aren't alone.   

I can also guarantee that looking at what everyone else is doing and hearing their stories is going to be powerfully inspiring and also build a great connection and community among us all.   And I would love to have you and your group be a part of all of that.   So please, join us there, and share, and don't worry about whether your skill is big or small, or whatever.   Trust me, we all love it all!

If you aren't on Facebook, well, seriously, it takes like ten seconds to join.   You need a password and a valid email address.   You can join, do the challenge and check it all out, and then you can delete your account afterwards, if you want. 

Okay, if I haven't scared you off by all these ideas and suggestions, please go to my Earth Skills Seven Day Challenge page and check out the different downloadable journaling sheets, planning guidelines and more, as well as the video above, which is all about these same things I just wrote about.  

My bottom line is your success.   I know that if you practice a single skill every day for just 15-20 minutes, it will positively affect your life.   I know this from my own experience, as well as countless other students and apprentices.   This stuff is very, very powerful, and it doesn't matter which skill you pick.   I want to see you succeed, and to be awesome.   So I am pulling out every stop to help make that happen.

See you in the Facebook Group!   We have a week to get ready, and then we will be doing this together!

If you want to join, please click here:

June 1-7, 2014.