For the past five years, I’ve engaged in a yearly, month-long blogging challenge as a way of preparing for the upcoming new year. This challenge – write a blog entry whose theme is prompted by a new word each day – was decidedly introspective and somewhat spiritural in nature. It spurred me to consider themes of renewal, self-assessment, and refocusing in preparation for the coming year.


Last year I decided to take it up a notch. I wrote a daily blog post specifically with IT and technology in mind. You can read the series of posts here: http://www.adatosystems.com/tag/elul/


Several of those posts were graciously reviewed by our editorial team, and appeared on Geek Speak:


This year, I thought I'd invite the entire THWACK community to participate (and earn some points in the process!) The value of these types of challenges (as long as they don’t distract from our other work), is that the practice of writing begets more writing, and these short, free-form, introspective essays often give rise to ideas that can lead to real improvement in our environment, career, and even life.


So here's how it will work: Beginning December 1, we're going to post an "official" essay for each daily word (you can find them over here: Word-A-Day Challenge 2016 ). You'll hear from me, the other Head Geeks, and other SolarWinds luminaries.


You are then invited to post your entry in the comments for that word. It can be an essay, a poem, or even a picture. As a reward for your efforts, we'll gift you with 200 THWACK points per entry. That means you have a chance to claim 6,000 points if you participate for the entire month!


To give you a leg up, I'm publishing the word list NOW, so that you can get writing, curating, and creating. That way, when December 1 arrives, you will be able to claim all that wonderful THWACK point goodness.


We also hope this challenge will help us all build meaningful connections to other members of our community, and build insight into what makes each of us tick. It can't be ALL about our rabid love of SolarWinds and desire for THWACK swag, can it?


The daily word prompts are:

Day 1: Learn

Day 2: Act

Day 3: Search

Day 4: Understand

Day 5: Accept

Day 6: Believe

Day 7: Choose

Day 8: Hear

Day 9: Observe

Day 10: Count

Day 11: Trust

Day 12: Forgive

Day 13: Remember

Day 14: Rest

Day 15: Change

Day 16: Pray

Day 17: Awaken

Day 18: Ask

Day 19: Judge

Day 20: Fulfill

Day 21: Love

Day 22: End

Day 23: Begin

Day 24: Hope

Day 25: Intend

Day 26: Create

Day 27: Bless

Day 28: Give

Day 29: Return

Day 30: Celebrate


I'm looking forward to seeing what our community has to say and share on these themes. Remember you can find all the essays over here: Word-A-Day Challenge 2016