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Go back to: Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4 [Haven’t taken the IN AWE 21-Day Challenge? Join here.]


Welcome to Day 5 of the IN AWE 21-Day Challenge! Today, we spark inspiration, meaning and joy by cultivating COMMUNITY:

We are experiencing a loneliness epidemic. That’s right, people are feeling lonelier today than ever (and this was before the social distancing in light of coronavirus). Good news, now that we know it, we can do something about it.

CHALLENGE: Identify your “people.” You know, the ones you feel like you can go to in an emergency, when you need a laugh… people who just get you. (If you don’t have your “people” – you’re not alone. See the article noted above. Instead, your challenge is to identify someone you know that you wish was your person + apply the below action to them.)

INSPIRATION: Learning about the loneliness epidemic  + how to break out of it and build our own community, was fascinating and empowering. Join my conversation with Radha Agrawal, author of Belong, on Podcast Ep. #98 here.

ACTION: My friend, don’t assume these people know they’re “your people.” Call them and let them know. Don’t text, call. Ask your person to do the IN AWE Challenge, too. Doing this together will be a meaningful experience to build upon.

Share who your person is and how it feels to invite them to take the IN AWE Challenge with you in the comments below or on social media, tagging me + using #inawe. Every day until publication (5/5), I’ll randomly pick one person who does to win a copy of IN AWE to gift to a neighbor, favorite barista or as a random act of kindness (because you’ve already preordered copies for yourself, friends + family, right? :).

My friend, today is your day!  Live IN AWE.
John O’Leary





Did you know? The 21-Day IN AWE Challenge is inspired by John’s forthcoming book IN AWE. Preorder your copy + follow all the fun behind the scenes at ReadInAwe.com.

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Showing 11 comments
  • Lori M.

    This was a good activity, because it made me realized how blessed I am! It is hard for me to narrow this down, because I have different “people” in different contexts. There is my husband (of course) – we met freshman year of high school, when I was 14. He has been my best friend for most of my life. I love that my mom and brother have become friends as well as family, and that I have in-laws who are called both friends AND family now! Then there are my work friends (who “get” what we do in academia, even when others sometimes don’t) and my church friends and family. Even sitting here in my house by myself, I know there are people I can call, email, or message if I start feeling isolated. And for all of its faults, I love that Facebook lets me keep in touch with friends and family all over the world!

  • Bobbi

    “My people” are my besties. I’m a single mom, my parents have passed away, so I really have little family. My daughters are amazing and they’re really the only “blood” I’ve got. But my family is who I make it. I have a friend Jessica in Seattle who was looking for something to focus on so she’s doing the In Awe Challenge too. I’m going to share this again because its helping me sit every morning after my run and take a minute to be positive as this whole thing around us unfolds.

  • Deanna

    My sister who married my brother! What! No…my brother married an amazing woman and I call her sister. She gets me! She is one I can count on for some great times, great laughs and most of all, through some of life’s struggles.
    I just called her to remind her how appreciative I am for her always showing up in my life and being part of my tribe. I was excited to share this 21 day challenge with her. It felt like a gift I had for her, that sat too long under the Christmas tree waiting to be opened! Thank you John for inspiring all those who are participating in this challenge! I enjoy reading everyone’s posts!

    • Marie-Josée

      It was a little difficult to let my people know what they mean to me. I called them but only told them indirectly.

  • Claire

    My mom is my person it felt good to ask her because she introduced me to your story years ago.

  • Joel

    John, this is another great and timely challenge. Just this week, I’ve started reaching out to people that I’ve known in one way or another. And while no one was prepared or had expected our current situation, one of the many blessings and lessons we can learn from it is that we need to never forget or lose the personal touch that we can share with others. Personally. I hope that once this COVID shake-up is behind us, the world of business and communication returns to a simpler, more humanistic model.

  • Tonya Campbell

    When I saw the challenge I actually forwarded it to my tribe and we have been doing this together. My sweet friends love me, encourage me, heal me, make me laugh, make me want to be better and remind me that I am never alone. I love that I can share mom things, personal things, work things, lost hopes, fears, discouragements, trials and most wonderfully…spiritual things!! They love and uplift me even when I just think of them. So blessed! Thanks John for giving me this opportunity to reflect and take the opportunity to share this with them.

  • dolores

    Happy St Patrick’s day Mr O’Leary
    My friend Cindy is an optimist, I am going to call her today.

  • Jill Startin

    I FaceTimed both Beth an Taylor today to tell them they were my people. Both were receptive to the in awe challenge and glad to hear of it in times like these. It felt good to share something positive with them. One is a school psychologist who worries about the kids who don’t live unsafe homes or won’t get a good meal while away from school. The other a blue collar worker who’s glad to work where she does and the virus doesn’t matter as much. Both are amazing humans. Thanks for this challenge.

    • Brian Gaffney

      Hi Jill – Love that you took action! We’d like to send you a copy of IN AWE once it’s released in May. Can you send me the best address to ship? I’m at brian@johnolearyinspires.com. Thanks!

  • Lori

    I don’t think I have people. I hear folks talk about their tribe or their person, but I don’t have a group with which I gather regularly or someone who just gets me as I am. I’m usually OK with that. I miss friends who have moved into other stages of life, but keep up with them through FB even though we no longer move in the same circles. My husband is not very social, so we don’t have couple friends. I don’t think I feel lonely most of the time, but occasionally I wish I had more of a social life.

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