The Happy Challenge List

The Happy Challenge List

Are you ready to explore your own boundaries and mind? Or are you looking for tools to fight depression or anxiety? Do the Happy Challenge List, and tell us the result.

The Happy Challenge List is a list that provides a series of ‘challenges’ that encourage you to broaden your horizon, explore your own creativity and thoughts, face your fears and discover your talents, and be a better functioning human being independently, as well as in a group.

The list focuses on different challenges surrounding:

  • Self-awareness and self-care

  • Mental health and personal development

  • Awareness of your environment, nature and social network

  • Awareness of (self-)respect and (own) boundaries

  • Social skills, strengths and weaknesses

  • Organising and planning

A challenge is a friendly suggestion. Some challenges you can do right away, some need time and preparation. You can randomly pick challenges if you want to. Feel free to scroll through the list before you start to get an idea of what challenges there are.

You will probably notice challenges have ‘different categories’ (not mentioned in the text). There are physical challenges, writing challenges, social challenges, etc. If you randomly pick challenges, try not to do too many challenges in a row that are in the same category. Change it up. Some challenges are more fun than the others - the point is not to do the ‘more annoying’ ones first, but to mix them up.

How it works:

  • When you finish a challenge, count the points you win and write them down. If you don’t want to do a challenge, save it for later. You might change your mind.

  • Don’t rush the challenges. Do them at your own time. It’s not a competition. This list is a guide.

  • Try to do challenges you are less excited about as well.

  • Try to do a few challenges a week.

  • Don’t ‘use’ people for challenges or simply finish challenges for points. See a challenge as a suggestion to try something new, different, or something that will help organise your life. Wait for the right moment to do the challenge. If you know about a challenge you could do, the right moment to do it will present itself.

  • If you like a challenge, if it teaches you something, if you enjoy the result, you collect a good experience and knowledge through it.

  • If you don’t enjoy a challenge but still finish it, you learn the downsides of certain challenges. Consider it food for thought.

  • Try to focus on how you feel during each challenge, and acknowledge those feelings, good or bad. Try to understand how these ‘suggestions’ influence and affect those involved. See what you take from each challenge.


The Happy Challenge List

  1. Print this list, so you can check the challenges you have done.

    30 points

  2. Find or buy a special notebook for this challenge. (You could also start a blog online instead)

    5 points

  3. Come up with a cartoon character and draw it.

    15 points

    Bonus: Draw yourself as a cartoon character .

    15 points

  4. Put on your favourite outfit on tomorrow.

    40 points

  5. Find a new quote you like and write it down.

    10 points

  6. Read ‘The World Glows: 10 Bioluminescent Organisms You Should See

    5 points

    Research your 2 favourite organisms from the list

    20 points

    Make a plan to find one bioluminescent organism somewhere the upcoming 12 months.

    20 points

    Actually go, within 12 months.

    120 points

    If you manage to see one of these specifies during your trip:

    -70 points. Why? Because the journey is more important than the destination .

    Bonus: Find a friend who wants to do it with you.

    25 points

  7. Collect clothing you no longer wear, and donate it charity.

    20 points

  8. Take a ‘ridiculous’ selfie and delete it.

    10 points

  9. Take a ‘beautiful’ selfie, don’t show it to anyone, and delete it.

    100 points

  10. Make a playlist with 30 songs that make you feel happy.

    25 points

  11. Write down your favourite memory relating to food.

    20 points

  12. Read the news every day for 15 minutes, on two different news sites, for 2 weeks.

    50 points

    Read 4 opinion articles in 2 weeks.

    30 points

    Bonus: Message your favourite journalist, and tell them you appreciate their work.

    50 points

  13. Write an opinion article to a newspaper on a topic and current event you think is important.

    50 points

    Actually send it.

    200 points

    If your story gets placed:

    -100 points. Why? Because you shouldn’t do it to be published. You should do it, to share your voice.

  14. Find a meal you’ve never made before, and cook it.

    20 points

    Bonus: Ask someone to help you (learn to) cook it.

    15 points

  15. Fix something broken or in need of replacement with your hands. Change a lightbulb, tire, anything. Learn how to do it if you can’t.

    25 points

  16. Research fish, find one you like, and draw a cartoon of it.

    25 points

  17. Borrow an item you need, from someone who can lend it to you.

    35 points

    Return the item after use.

    50 points

  18. Lend an item to someone who needs it.

    40 points

    Make sure it returns.

    50 points

  19. Take a stroll in a park and feed the ducks. Find said ducks and park if there are none. Optional: feed sheep, cows, chickens, or any other animal you can find outside and safely feed. (If you are in a wheelchair, ask for help)

    25 points

  20. Find out more about ‘kintsugi’.

    15 points

  21. Clean and re-organise one of your cupboards.

    15 points

  22. Take a picture of the sky and come up with a ridiculous ‘artsy name’ for the picture.

    10 points

  23. Write and send a postcard to someone.

    15 points

  24. Spend 15 minutes once a week to learn more about the brain, for a month.

    35 points

  25. Write down how you feel right now, using 100 words.

    20 points

  26. Read ‘10 Ways To Be A Better Human Being, For Free’.

    5 points

    Implement one thing on the list in your life for 3 weeks.

    15 points

    Bonus: Implement two things on the list in your life for 3 weeks.

    30 points

    Bonus: Implement two things on the list in your life completely.

    160 points

  27. Take a different route to your supermarket on 3 different occasions.

    30 points

  28. Tell someone a joke.

    40 points

  29. Watch a documentary on a subject you find interesting.

    15 points

    Bonus: Research the documentary online.

    15 points

  30. Drink 1,5 liters of fluid (soda and alcohol don’t count) every day, for 8 weeks.

    45 points

  31. Plan a trip with a relative, friend or acquaintance.

    40 points

  32. Buy your favourite dessert or snack (and eat it!).

    10 points

    Bonus: Share it with a relative, friend or acquaintance.

    10 points

  33. Reach out to someone who seems down or in need to talk.

    45 points

  34. Write down your 3 biggest strengths and weaknesses.

    10 points

    Write down how you could improve 1 weakness.

    10 points

  35. Watch your favourite movie.

    10 points

    Bonus: Watch it with someone else.

    15 points

  36. Watch someone else’s favourite movie with them.

    25 points

  37. Buy a plant and take care of it.

    15 points

    Bonus: If the plant has plantlets, multiply the plant, and give the new plant to someone else. (See tip 9 in ‘10 Ways To Be A Better Human Being, For Free)

    35 points

  38. Sing a song in the shower or bath.

    15 points

  39. Learn history: research what life was like in your country in 1500.

    15 points

    Bonus: Find a friend who wants to do it with you.

    35 points

  40. Draw a tree.

    15 points

  41. Cook a meal for family or friends.

    60 points

  42. Take out the trash.

    15 points

  43. Search for the term ‘humanity’ on ThinkExist, scroll through the quotes, and find 3 quotes you like and write them down.

    10 points

  44. Call a friend, relative or acquaintance and ask how they are.

    15 points

  45. Research what wifi and the internet is.

    35 points

  46. Pay a stranger’s bill (coffee, groceries, etc).

    25 points

  47. Learn in a different language how to say your name, where you are from, that you need help and that you don’t speak the language.

    25 points

    Bonus: Find out what the words ‘love’ and ‘hope’ mean in that language.

    5 points

  48. Tell someone about your biggest dreams.

    20 points

  49. White a haiku.

    25 points

  50. Clean up the clutter and space in one of your digital devices (computer, phone, etc).

    10 points

  51. Find a song you like and dance to it. (If you are in a wheelchair, do this while you sit down)

    20 points

    Bonus: Dance to it with a friends, relative or acquaintance .

    20 points

  52. Write down your favourite childhood memory.

    20 points

  53. Get a haircut.

    10 points

  54. Find a picture you like, print and frame it.

    10 points

  55. Read a book in a category you like and finish it.

    15 points

    Bonus: read another book, on a subject you know nothing about, and finish it.

    90 points

  56. Apologise to someone you wronged (and make sure you mean it).

    80 points

  57. Take a hike or long walk (if you’re in a wheelchair or need help, adjust the challenge in a way that works for you).

    30 points

    Bonus: take a hike with someone you like.

    25 points

  58. Thank someone who has recently helped you or has been there for you, in a special way.

    50 points

  59. Learn more about the differences between capitalism and socialism.

    30 points

  60. Write down your favourite hobbies.

    5 points

  61. Learn more about a religion you know little about and spent 30 minutes researching that religion.

    20 points

  62. Find a hobby you haven’t spend much time on lately, and spend 2 hours on it. No points for hobbies that concern abusive behaviour or are bad for the environment.

    45 point

  63. Learn more about bees and why we need to protect them.

    70 points

  64. Vacuum the floor (or clean something else in case you can’t).

    20 points

  65. Write down your favourite memory related to summer.

    15 points

  66. Go to bed at 11 in the evening for 3 weeks (if you have no nightshift).

    40 points

  67. Watch and listen to three ‘ASMR’ soap cutting videos.

    10 points

  68. Prepare a vegetable snack and eat it (unless you’re allergic).

    10 points

  69. Listen to the rain for 15 minutes. Either real rain, or a video.

    10 points

  70. Research more about what light actually is.

    30 points

  71. Buy/make lunch, and this time, try something new.

    20 points

  72. Bake something.

    20 points

    Bonus: Gift your result to someone you like.

    20 points

  73. Watch 6 sunsets in a month for 5 minutes while listening to music.

    40 points

    Bonus: Watch 1 sunset with someone else.

    25 points

  74. Write down your deepest fears. Pick one fear, and write down how you could reduce anxiety relating to this fear.

    30 points

  75. Message someone you haven’t spoken to for a long time.

    20 points

  76. Write down your favourite memory relating to autumn.

    10 points

  77. Learn about the moon cycle, and watch the moon for 5 minutes 2 times in a month.

    30 points

  78. Clean your shoes.

    15 points

  79. Watch a childhood movie.

    20 points

  80. Ask someone about their favourite childhood movie.

    20 points

  81. Clean the screens of your digital devices.

    15 points

  82. Take a shower or bath and really take time to clean yourself properly, and tell yourself you deserve time for yourself and self-care.

    10 points

  83. Write down your 10 favourite films or series.

    5 points

  84. Write down foods or drinks you didn’t like as a child, but like now.

    15 points

  85. Plan a star-watching trip with friends, relatives or acquaintances.

    15 points

    Actually go.

    50 point

    Do it again.

    70 points

  86. Listen to your 30-happy-songs playlist (see 60) once a week for 15 minutes, for 6 months.

    80 points

  87. Clean your desk or kitchen.

    20 points

  88. Learn a knot.

    20 points

  89. Bake cupcakes for someone (make sure they are not allergic to the ingredients).

    30 points

  90. Make a grocery list and try to buy as many items as you can with no packaging or little packaging, 3 times a month.

    30 points

  91. Remove the labels from items you have that you forgot to remove. (Plates, products, etc)

    5 points

  92. Recycle your plastic.

    45 points

  93. Send a song you absolutely love to someone you like.

    20 points

  94. Listen to a song someone else likes.

    25 points

  95. Eat no meat for 2 weeks, and challenge yourself to cook vegetarian or vegan.

    30 points

    Bonus: Do it with a friend, your family or loved one.

    25 points

  96. In one month, pick up 8 pieces of trash you find outside, and throw them in a bin.

    65 points

  97. Plan a movie-evening with friends, relatives, co-workers or acquaintances (minimum 3 people).

    45 points

  98. Try a sport you’ve never tried before.

    30 points

    Bonus: try it with a friend.

    25 points

  99. Plan a trip to see the sea or a lake, with someone else.

    25 points

    Actually go.

    50 points

  100. Research what ‘marble painting’ is and watch 1 video about it.

    15 points

  101. Have a cup of tea in a flavour you never tried before.

    15 points

    Bonus: have tea with someone else.

    25 points

  102. Learn more about electricity and solar energy.

    30 points

  103. Tell someone about your deepest fears.

    40 points

  104. Give a stranger a compliment once a week, for 4 weeks.

    50 points

  105. Give yourself a compliment once a week, for 4 weeks.

    35 points

  106. Learn how to play chess, or play chess twice with someone else.

    35 points

  107. Organise your washed socks, and use old ones or those missing the other one to clean stains on the floor before throwing them away. (If you can’t do this, clear something else with the socks)

    15 points

  108. Learn the lyrics to a song you like and sing-a-long to it, twice a week, for 4 weeks.

    20 points

  109. Collect 20 photos you like in a digital album you can easily access.

    20 points

    Bonus: Print them and put them in an album.

    25 points

  110. Learn about 3 female scientists, and 3 male scientists.

    75 points

  111. Write down your dreams for 3 months.

    65 points

  112. Fold the laundry.

    10 points

  113. Research different gemstones and learn more about 3 you like.

    10 points

  114. Make a gift for someone. Don’t buy. Make.

    45 points

    Actually give the gift.

    20 points

  115. Watch a documentary about animals.

    25 points

  116. Listen to the sound of the wind for 5 minutes, twice a week. Either outside, or on a video.

    15 points

  117. Wake up every morning, air your bed and then make it right away, for 2 weeks.

    35 points

  118. Buy candles and use them twice a month while you watch a movie. (Be careful with fire)

    15 points

  119. Tell someone you don’t agree with, your perspective on the matter.

    55 points

  120. Sign up for a course to learn something new: an instrument, a dancing course, a computer course, anything.

    5 points

    Actually go to the course.

    10 points

    Finish the course.

    50 points

    Bonus: do it together with someone else.

    25 points

  121. Write a story about a person who finds a secret castle in a forest, and what happens when they enter it. Write a happy ending to the story, with a moral story, as if you are telling it to a child.

    35 points

    Bonus: Send your story to PhotoandGrime.com and give us permission to share it.

    20 points

  122. Draw your favourite quote (See 5 and 43) in a creative way, and decorate the letters.

    30 points

  123. Find a poem you like, and write it down.

    15 points

    Bonus: Recite the poem to someone you like.

    35 points

    Bonus: Create a piece of art and use the poem as inspiration.

    35 points

  124. Tell someone about their greatest qualities or what they’re good at.

    40 points

  125. Listen to the sound of birds for 5 minutes, twice a month. Either outside, or on a video.

    20 points

  126. Write down your most important thoughts and conclusions of today.

    20 points

  127. Tell someone you miss them (if you do).

    25 points

  128. Learn more about jellyfish, find one you like the most, and set it as your phone’s background for 1 week.

    10 points

    Bonus: Tweet a jellyfish at @photoandgrime with the hashtag #happychallengelist.

    60 points

  129. Meet your neighbours or check on them to see how they are doing.

    45 points

  130. Find out the name of your favourite tree, and learn more about it.

    60 points

  131. Buy a newspaper, and read it completely.

    50 points

  132. Create a ‘still life’ that looks aesthetically pleasing to the eye, and keep it up for 4 days.

    20 points

    Draw or paint it within 1 hour.

    30 points

    Bonus: Tweet it at @photoandgrime while using the hashtag #happychallengelist.

    30 points

  133. Play a board-game with someone.

    25 points

  134. Ask someone if they need your help when they talk about a project, problem or issue.

    10 points

    Bonus: Help them if you can.

    50 points

  135. Write down your favourite memory about winter.

    35 points

  136. Go on a solo-trip for a few hours.

    50 points

  137. Learn more about different types of clouds.

    25 points

  138. Go out to the movies with someone you like.

    20 points

  139. As an experiment, try to eat no sugar for 2 weeks and write down if and how it affects your body. (Only do if it’s safe)

    20 points

  140. Ask a stranger politely about their day (E.g a waiter, a store-clerk, etc).

    15 points

  141. Learn how to say goodbye politely, in 4 different languages.

    20 points

  142. Clean your room.

    45 points

  143. Research ‘paper art’, find an art-piece you like, and send it to someone.

    15 points

  144. Write down a memory relating to ‘apples’.

    20 points

  145. Write down a list of 10 places you would like to visit soon.

    10 points

    Actually visit 1 place somewhere upcoming 12 months.

    40 points

    Bonus: Take someone with you.

    25 points

  146. Clean your bag.

    25 points

  147. Write down your favourite memory concerning a person you like.

    35 points

  148. Draw a treehouse.

    20 points

  149. Talk to someone on the phone for 30 minutes.

    25 points

  150. Research the ‘Fight, flight and freeze’ response. (Suggestion: ‘Birth of Trauma: The Patterns Behind Fear and Fight, Flight & Freeze’)

    25 points

  151. Listen to an episode of 1 podcast.

    10 points

  152. Make an ‘art-piece’ concerning the theme ‘peace’.

    55 points

  153. Give things you no longer need (not clothing) to charity or someone you like.

    55 points

  154. Clean the windows in one room.

    55 points

  155. Invite a new acquaintance for coffee or tea.

    65 points

  156. Forgive someone.

    80 points

  157. Visit a museum you think you might find interesting, with someone you like.

    45 points

  158. Visit a museum someone else finds interesting, with them.

    55 points

  159. Read the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

    60 points

  160. Learn about meditation.

    25 points

    Try meditation.

    25 points

  161. Watch an aquarium for 20 minutes. In reality, or on video.

    20 points

  162. Gift someone something they need, that you no longer need.

    70 points

  163. Gift someone something they need, that you need yourself, but don’t tell them you do. (unless it could put you in physical/financial/mental danger)

    100 points

  164. Clean the mirrors in the house.

    30 points

  165. Do something you love that’s not unhealthy for you, for 2 hours.

    30 points

  166. Sit 20 minutes in silence with your thoughts, without music.

    50 points

  167. Learn how to say ‘I love you’ in 4 different languages.

    20 points

  168. Write down what you want to do tomorrow.

    10 points

  169. Count your blessings and write them down.

    60 points

  170. Count your 5 biggest problems that you are able to fix in a legal way, and decide which one is the most important one to work on right now.

    30 points

    Find a way to fix the problem and ask for help if needed.

    100 points

  171. Watch a documentary about the oceans.

    50 points

  172. Clean your bedroom.

    20 points.

  173. Buy your favourite non-alcoholic drink and enjoy it.

    20 points

  174. Hold the door for someone, four times, at different moments.

    20 points

  175. Write a story about the positive things in your life.

    50 points

    Bonus: Send it to PhotoandGrime.com and give use permission to publish it.

    20 points

  176. Make 4 people laugh.

    60 points

  177. Find out the favourite colour of 5 people you know, in a face-to-face conversation.

    60 points

  178. Find out when you can spot meteorites in your area.

    20 points

    Try to see them.

    30 points

    Bonus: Watch them with someone else.

    25 points

  179. Cut your toenails and start fresh.

    30 points

  180. Sit down for 20 minutes and organise your thoughts, while listening to music.

    50 points

  181. Take a walk in the rain (not when there’s thunder) for 20 minutes while using an umbrella. If you’re in a wheelchair, ask someone to do it with you.

    20 points

  182. Learn how to count to 10 in a language you don’t know.

    40 points

  183. Find a new artist you enjoy, and listen to one of their CD’s completely.

    15 points

  184. Write down how you feel right now, using 300 words.

    20 points

  185. Find out someone’s birthday, and remember to congratulate them on that day.

    20 points

  186. Introduce two people to each other, on your initiation.

    40 points

  187. Walk barefoot in the grass for 10 minutes, while listening to music. (Make sure it’s safe) If you for example can’t walk, touch the leafs of a shrubbery for 10 minutes.

    20 points.

  188. Explain something to someone while using knowledge you learned recently.

    20 points

  189. Ask someone to explain something to you they are more knowledgeable about than you.

    20 points

  190. Write down what loyalty means to you.

    20 points

  191. Read a chapter from a history book on any subject you find interesting.

    80 points

  192. Buy and eat your favourite childhood candy. (Unless you’re allergic)

    40 points

  193. Go out in nature, and collect 3 fallen leafs you like (preferably do this in autumn)

    20 points

  194. Research conviction statistics relating to crimes, in your own country.

    70 points

  195. Send someone a picture of your favourite animal and tell them why you like it. Ask theirs.

    10 points

  196. Clean the living room.

    20 points

  197. Don’t use any electronic device that allow you to use the internet, for 3 days (if safe).

    20 points

  198. Tell someone you love them (if you do) without expecting them to say it back. This could be a parent, sibling, crush, anyone. Tell them you love them because you do, no matter what.

    200 points

  199. Love yourself in a healthy, non-narcissistic way.

    100 points.

  200. Count your points and write a story about who you were before you finished this challenge, and if something changed after it.

    100 points

    Bonus: Send your story to PhotoandGrime.com and give us permission to publish it.

    100 points

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