Just do something
Do you know how ridiculously long its taken me to write this sentence? For the past couple weeks, this voice in my head has been squawking at me to post on my blog. I've logged on a couple times, and have even clicked "Add New", but then something would pop up and I'd shut it down. For at least 5 weeks I've ignored the voice in my head.
I do that quite often. I'll think "Hmmm... it would be fun to do this..." and then just move on to the next shiny object I see, dropping that voice again.
The weird thing is, I wasn't always this way.
When I was younger (around Grade 8 age), I'd get so much done. I'd come home after school and just start. I wouldn't even plan out my steps. I'd just start doing something I liked doing, and it would turn into these really cool things (well... maybe not cool but you know). I'd open my internet, log onto the Jasc Paint Shop Pro group, find a new tutorial, and try it out myself. I'd play around with Paint, and end up turning real photos into drawings pixel-by-pixel.
Now, I make lists. I block out time. I plan my steps. I chunk tasks into smaller tasks. I spend so much time preparing to do something that nothing gets done (except the planning, of course).
Why do I do this?
I think it's a form of procrastination that developed while I was in school. The work that I had to do wasn't pleasant to me, so I avoided it for as long as possible by creating schedules, lists, sub-tasks...
The thing is - I don't know where to go from here. I have my bursts of energy, moments where this happens, but not nearly as often as I'd like.
Recently, I found @levelsio's blog. He pledged to create 12 startups within 12 months. In his inaugural post, he says it all:
- Problem 1: Finishing Things. We creatives have one common problem: finishing things [...] We like the feeling of starting something “new”, we despise the feeling of finishing something “old”.
- Problem 2: Launching. We are scared shitless to launch “our baby” we spent months on building out into the world [...] Because what if anybody would actually use what we built? They might hate it! So better to not launch at all.
Reading this hit me pretty hard. These are my two key problems. And I think I've been doing very little to address them.
So, what can I do? My first thought was "hmmm... maybe I'll try out what this guy's doing." Then I felt self-conscious of copying him... oh boy.
What I need to start doing:
- Finishing Things
- Sharing Things with Others
I need to get control over this problem... so....
I'm committing to making 1 new thing every month for 6 months, and sharing it on this blog.
And I'm relying on you to hold me to that.
Update 1 [Sept 11th]: I made a bunch of things this week - check them out in this post.
Update 2 [Sept 22nd]: I've found that "make 1 new thing" is too vague for me. I made a bunch of stuff this month, but I don't feel like I've been moving towards accomplishing any outstanding projects anymore than I was before starting this challenge.
The Updated Challenge: To complete 1 project per month for 6 months. Each project will be laid out in advance & posted on here so I'm accountable to completing it.