“Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone.” – Pablo Picasso
It’s the old classic creatives issue. “I have loads of ideas, but not enough time to create them, and the ideas I do have I can never finish”. At some point in the process of becoming an accomplished creator, we go through these periods of never finishing anything, putting off everything and blaming every element we can until we finally come back to ourselves.
One of the biggest myth’s that arises in this argument-of-the-self is that the reason we are not finishing anything is that we are attempting to do too much at the same time. Eventually, you will realise this is bullshit.
We tell ourselves that if we try and create too many projects, or to begin planning more than one idea at a time, we will never create anything of substance and quality. Maybe this is true for some people but more than often it is not about the quantity of output, but the quality of dedication we input. I have not, by any means, been the perfect example of consistent dedication and organisation but when I am switched on, then I am switched on and realistically, this is the only way to go about it. If you have an idea, if left in the brain, it just becomes a festering piece of mould, becoming less and less fresh as the days pass. If you have more than one idea that you are truly passionate about then start on them, but structure your workload. The organisation is key.
A new software I have been using to help my organisation in this way is Asana. The company I work for asked me to research this software and explore how it can be best used, and I now love it. Take a look at how mine looks:
Much to my downfall in the past, I have always been an ambitious person. So, as it stands, I am a Production Coordinator 5 days a week, who is working on marketing his newly released poetry collection (Whispers to the World), writing his novel, editing his play, and pitching articles to external blogs and magazines. I am not disillusioned by the fact that reaching levels of success in each area will take a while, but this just means I can’t sit around and wait for time to do its thing because it doesn’t work that way.
As you can see in the slideshow, I categorise my projects by what I am doing at that moment in time. Then I assign dates to each task within this project that give me a rough estimate of when I want things done. This is very helpful when it comes to this blog or to my Novel and Play because it means I can pick a time of the day or day of the week to make sure something is published or polished. I keep future blog post ideas, published and drafted posts and pitches for external magazines all in that one project in Asana, too. If you have all your ideas in one structured hub and break it down into sections and tasks, then suddenly the beast seems less intimidating.
Just 2 weeks ago I self-published my first poetry and prose collection ‘Whispers to the World’ and held a book launch at a local art gallery. It was a big moment for me, but it was also one of these projects that for many months and even years kept getting lost in the ether of procrastination and a lack of self-belief. Then when I finally gave confidence to this mindset of multiple ideas being achievable and to structuring and organising my workload, it suddenly became much simpler.
Simply put, we spend too much time creating excuses for why we haven’t started the idea that has been circling around in our head, that we have been talking to people about for years without ever bringing to fruition. The reason is that we are scared of what we have to do when it is finished, and we don’t know where to start, so by breaking it down into manageable pieces, we are able to work towards that goal of completion much easier. This goes for multiples projects, too. The benefit of multiple projects as well is that if you ever become tired of one, or feel like you need a momentary break to refresh your mind, you can move on to the other one and not feel like you’re doing nothing.
Lastly, within all this organisation, rest and time with friends is still an essential aspect of the process, so when you schedule everything in, always schedule time for yourself and for friends.
Grab your copy of my debut book Whispers To The World on Amazon here and spread the word: