It seems so many of my projects start off in a Flurry of excitement and enthusiasm only to Fizzle out and die. Am I the only one guilty of this?
I get so excited about a project whether it be a new novel I’m writing, a new gallery I’m showing my artwork at, a new business adventure or simply starting a flower bed or redecorating the cabin. I make lists, set goals, do all the things I’m supposed to do to achieve success.
About halfway through I fizzle. There’s no other word for it. I simply fizzle out. My energy level drops to nothing. My ideas that were flowing like the muddy Mississip’ dry up like Oklahoma during the dust bowl of the 1920s. Fttt! Nothing, nada, zip …
How can I make it from Flurry to Finish and bypass the infamous Fizzle? Should I start out slower? Would that prevent burn out? I decided to do a little research and share it here with you. Surely I’m not the only person on earth who starts out like a whirlwind with my hair on fire to burn out before the project is complete, am I? (Please tell me I’m not.)
So many of the articles all said the exact same things:
“Be selective in what you embark on. Estimate the resources you will need. Budget your time and resources. Set realistic goals. Quit being a perfectionist. Commit to it. ”
All good advice but the same advice over and over and none of it pushed my buttons. Then I found the following tidbits that really resonated with me:
- Track your progress. Well, heck, why didn’t I think of this? I’m always more productive during a challenge like NaNoWriMo or the 365K Challenge on the 10 Minute Novelists Facebook page. (If you aren’t already a member and you want to be a writer, I strongly recommend joining this group. Very supportive drama free learning environment).
- Connect with your end vision. Face it – when we start out our vision of the project is all shiny and bright but as we put the work into it the shine seems to fade. Darn, this is hard work. Do I really want to work this hard? Why am I doing this again? Reconnect with that shiny end result and maybe you won’t mind the work quite so much.
- Celebrate what you’ve done so far. No, you aren’t finished yet but if you break the long journey into smaller steps, why not celebrate the stops along the way? After all, the joy of the journey is what you learn along the way. Celebrate the small successes! You’ll be more likely to get to the big one.
- If you lose your excitement before finishing the project, pause a minute and think about how much work you have already done. Is there really that much left? Push through. You’ve got this. It sure beats the heck out of starting over, doesn’t it?
- This last one rang the most true to me. Finishing means opening yourself up to criticism. Fear can stop you from finishing. Fear of failure – fear of success… both are equally strong. Don’t let your external success or failure define your internal worth.
So what are you going to finish today? Are we ready to move from the Flurries of excitement, push through the Fizzle of the middle of the project, to celebrate the Finish? I am!