As the year draws to a close, it’s a natural time to reflect on the past year. There are probably a litany of projects that you had hoped to accomplish this year, but they just didn’t happen. What went wrong? Why didn’t you pursue them?
Starting projects are easy but completing them can be more challenging. Tackling personal projects do not have to loom as large as climbing Mt. Everest. Typically, they get put on the back-burner for when you have the time. That’s the biggie, but it’s only just one of the reasons. Unfortunately, projects become easily forgotten and neglected because they aren’t managed well, nor planned. Here’s some helpful hints;
- Space: Many times we simply don’t have the ample space to accommodate the ongoing project to work on it.
- Tools: Having the appropriate materials and tools on hand to complete the project is essential.
- Goals/timeline: Establishing a time-line will help you achieve your goal in manageable time frames. It is so much more difficult to target ambiguous goals like “soon”, “summer”, or “whenever”. Hold yourself accountable to a more specific time, date. Create a strategic plan.
- Be realistic: This is a key factor for the success of the project. If you take on too much and didn’t allow enough time to complete it, you are guaranteed to set yourself up for failure.
- Organize: Don’t be haphazard with your efforts. Be your own Project Manager and manage it. Break down the actions into small manageable bite-size tasks that you can routinely do.
- Commit: Staying committed to a project is probably the most difficult step of all. Focus on the goal and what it will feel like when the job is done, and create a plan how to get there. Whether it is a daily or weekend plan, carve out a sufficient amount of time to work on it.
Let’s say for example your project is photo organizing. For months or even years, you’ve been shoving and cramming all your photos in shoe-boxes, drawers, or envelopes, and never made the time to organize them. This sorting process is a huge undertaking so you need to organize the process. If every time you immerse yourself into this project and it requires you to schlep the boxes up and down, to and fro, the project is doomed. Resist the temptation to spread out every photo you own and clutter every horizontal surface in your home. Organize one box at a time, so at the end of the day, you will have made some productive headway and pushed out the overwhelm.
All projects (and hobbies, for that matter) need their own home. If you love knitting, corral all the yarns and needles in an organized space so that you can enjoy your hobby and not impede on the other living spaces in your home. Ditto to arts and any craft.
The bottom line is this; If you DO NOT have the space, right tools, realistic time-line, organization, or commitment, you will lose interest in the project. As a result, and in the worst case scenario…you might be inclined to start a brand NEW project!
Uh-oh, T-R-O-U-B-L-E. Tame your projects with time-management. Sounds like a plan to me, how ’bout you?