3 STEPS TO START PLANNING ANY PROJECT
Article by Kristen King
Philosophy of People
Magazine: Issue #18
You've got this idea of your big goal, but you're stuck on how to get there. When you're focused on an end result, it can be hard to put all the smaller pieces together to make the bigger picture come together. That's where a great basic plan will give you confidence to move forward. All you need are three basic steps to get you from completely clueless to confidently charging ahead. Here we go....
1. Establish a clear-cut objective.
Write a very clear, concise statement about what you want to achieve. Explain the purpose of your project and the end product. For example, if you want to write a children's book, you might say, "To create an illustrated children's book explaining the three meals a day and their importance to our diets and energy." This objective will serve as a baseline for developing your project. Refer back to it and make sure everything falls in line with this overarching statement.
2. List 3-5 major steps.
Odds are that you know at least three to five steps to complete your project. If you were writing that children's book, then you'd need to have a first draft, illustration sketches, and a summary for publishers. With those key steps, you can build smaller steps as you go. Don't overwhelm yourself with a huge to-do list. Just take those major steps and establish those as checkpoints for progress.
3. Set deadlines and "pay" yourself for accomplishing them.
Now that you've got your key steps, put a realistic deadline on each one. If you only have time to work on the weekends, then don't set a deadline in two weeks. Give yourself a reasonable amount of time so that everything feels achievable but still gives you a push. Then, reward yourself for actually doing them by "paying" yourself anything from a dinner out to a weekend getaway. Make it anything that will keep you motivated, working toward your goal, and meeting your deadlines.
How do those three little steps feel? Planning isn't so daunting when you break it down and use the knowledge you already have to organize your process. If you consistently use these steps, you'll be amazed at how much you can achieve and how your work will be in line with your vision. Now get out there, and start making something happen!
Philosophy of People is a compilation of self-improvement articles written by entrepreneurs seeking to bring holistic solutions to everyday problems. Read more articles from our 2nd Year Anniversary issue.
Kristen King is a project management professional and owner of Bountiful Pursuits where she helps people strategize their dream projects and make them a reality. She also blogs about living a fulfilling life around the globe at the Bountiful Abode. Find her online at Bountiful Pursuits and Bountiful Abode.