I am feeling pretty exhausted today and longing for the weekend, which sucks seeing as it’s only Tuesday! And the exhaustion makes me not want to go to work, just curl up and sleep for a week or two. That’s ridiculous though – I love my work, generally speaking. I mean, I get to spend time with babies and toddlers, what’s not to like about that?
I wasn’t sure what to blog about today so I looked at the official NaBloPoMo prompts. Today’s asks what the hardest part of a big project is. For me it’s getting the energy to start, hence me talking about my exhaustion a moment ago!
I love making plans, and have lots of projects that I think about doing, but getting started is a big problem for me. And getting started doesn’t necessarily just mean at the very beginning either.
With NaNoWriMo this year, for example, I struggle each day to get started with the writing, even if I manage well enough once I get into the flow of it.
With this blog, as I proved at the beginning of the year I can manage to write regularly if I put my mind to it. But if for some reason I have to take a break then getting started and getting back into it is a big problem for me. Same deal with my novel that has been languishing for a couple of years now in an almost finished state, barely having been touched in the meantime.
That last one has been an issue for many years. I remember when I was studying for my GCSEs (so when I was ~16) planning one particular weekend to get up early and spend the whole day studying. I overslept (nothing new there…) and decided the whole day was wasted so no point in bothering, and played computer games instead. I did get the work done the next day, incidentally.
Ninety percent of the time once I’ve got started and got into the zone I manage at whatever my task is pretty well, and will work it through to the end. Actually maybe that’s part of the problem – I prefer to tackle a goal in one big chunk. I don’t like to have to stop things part way through (and come back to restart them, sensing a theme?)
I could probably benefit from making more use of SMART goals. If I break my goals into chunks then I don’t have to feel like I’m stopping part way through. I can feel like I’ve finished the task I set out to do. “Sort the kitchen” is more achievable in one day than “sort the flat”. (We’re still in the process of unpacking and getting things settled post move.) And of course “sort the pantry” is even more achievable than that.
Then again, making SMART goals is almost a project in itself, and who knows when I’ll manage to get started with that..!
What is the hardest part of a big project: getting the energy to begin, finding the time to work on it, or feeling down that it’s over? How do you approach planning for and tackling your goals?