“An object at rest will remain at rest unless acted on by an unbalanced force.” – Law of Inertia
Often the hardest part of any project, whether it’s a new venture, a pet project, or just getting around to that spring cleaning is just getting started. We love to postpone, believing our future self will have the proper “gusto” or “gumption” to attack the challenge.
The truth is there’s no time like the present. Nothing will ever get finished unless it gets started, and even if the start is modest it moves you closer to finishing than you were before.
I find one of the most effective means for getting a project moving is to focus less on the vision of being finished, and more on the idea of making progress. Looking at the full scope can make a project seem insurmountable; the intimidation of so much to be done can scare you away to less daunting waters.
Instead of making the completion of the project your goal, set goals to simply work on the project. If you plug away at something a few hours each day, before you know it you’ll make real progress. I find this particularly useful when I’m learning a new skill or technology. A learning curve can make it seem like I’m running in place at first, but focusing on consistently putting time towards the project each day/week instead of focusing on the final product allows me a sense of accomplishment even when the initial progress may be slow.
The good news is that inertia works both ways. Once you get something moving it develops it’s own momentum, and it becomes easier to keep it going. So whatever project you’ve been putting off, stop reading blogs and go spend 1 hour working on it today. Your future self will thank you.