Time management tips can successfully manage your projects too. One of your best strategies is to talk yourself through any resistance, as you implement all the action steps necessary to make your plans a reality. True to the maxim, it is easier said than done! And so it has been throughout history, as this ancient saying confirms:
“Talk doesn’t cook rice.” (Chinese proverb)
Taking time to plan out your activities is important, of course. But it is possible to go overboard on the planning front.
Does translating a plan into action present a challenge for you? Take this quiz to find out:
T/F __ Beginning a project is my favorite part.
T/F __ I tend to create alternate plans for projects, when all I need to do is proceed with my first plan.
T/F __ I often question whether the conditions are right to start in.
T/F __ By the time I’ve “firmed up” my plans, I’m short on time to put them into action.
If you answer, “true” to any of these questions, here are 3 steps to help you mobilize yourself.
Beam your plans back down to earth.
By gently shifting your focus from the pie in the sky to the work that sits on your plate, you prepare your energy for taking action. Become comfortable with the bottom line:
At some point, the thinking and planning and talking must stop, and the doing has to begin.
There is no way around this fact. Between intention and action there is a step. The journey can’t begin until that step is taken! Mentally walk yourself through your project, all the way through to the reward of completing it successfully. Then identify your first action step.
Honor the challenge of deepening your commitment.
Moving from intention to action is a big step, because it represents a new level of commitment. You are putting yourself out and taking a risk. It is important to honor the challenge that this can present as you launch into something new. You might plan a small celebration or ritual as you enter this stage of change. You can affirm Kahlil Gibran’s declaration, “Work is love made visible.” After all, committing to your work and its rewards is self-love in action.
Pace yourself for success.
Moving from intention to action is an important step. Remember; it is a small step, because it is merely the first step of the many that will follow. The journey, as they say, has a thousand steps; don’t make the first one bigger than it needs to be!
As you proceed on your project, you may encounter any number of small ‘beginnings’ where you can use this advice to remain mobilized. Mantras can also help keep you focused and positive. For example, Anne Firth Murray, founding president of The Global Fund for Women writes, “There is no beginning too small.”
The more consistently you ease your transition into action, the smoother it becomes. By creating a realistic and supportive climate for success, you proceed on sound footing to make the most of your time.
Now, how will you bring your plans to fruition today?
© Copyright 2010 Paula Eder, Ph.D.