How to stop procrastinating and finish your personal projects.
(while juggling client work at the same time)
By: Sian Richardson
When you’re jamming on freelance clients as well as working on personal projects, it can get kinda hard to actually see those personal projects through to the end, right?
Over the last few years I’ve worked on my fair share of personal projects including 16HOURS (a photography + adventure magazine), Striking Truths (a manifesto-a-day blog), and Rebels With a Cause (an eBook), just to name a few. We got pretty good at getting shit done, so I thought I’d share a little about how to make moves on your own work (without letting your freelance work drag behind).
In the beginning these projects were hard to finish because they didn’t guarantee income (like freelance work), so they got sent to the bottom the to-do list.
But here’s the thing : If your personal projects are what gets you stoked and fired up, you HAVE to do them. You have to get them out into the world.
The work that fires you up like nothing else can — that’s the work that matters the most, because it’s what keeps you in the game, and keeps you inspired.
Here’s a few things to try ::
+ Set aside a specific amount of time each week for your personal projects.
They key here is to do whatever works for you. Maybe you have one day a week where you can dedicate yourself to personal projects… Or maybe it’s easier for you to take out 1 hour from each of your weekdays to jam on them. Whatever it is, set aside the time and make it happen. Use an app such as AntiSocial to block all social media and distractions, and just do the work.
+ Take a mini creative getaway.
What if you took a trip to a nearby town and book a cheap (or a fancy-as-hell) hotel for a couple days and just committed to getting shit done?
Before you leave, set a list of what you have to do. Keep your list reasonable. The key here is to know exactly what you want to have done by the time you leave. Then stock up on snacks and food on your way, then commit to getting in the zone when you’re there. No emails. No client work. No social media. Just go all-in on your personal project.
+ Tell people what you’re making, and when you’re going to launch it.
Nothing lights a fire under your ass like sharing what you’re up to, and telling your peeps when they can expect something new from you. It’s probably not a do-or-die situation if you really can’t launch on time — but they key here is to declare it and share it. When you publicly share what you’re up to, you’re going to be way more likely to actually see it through.
+ Launch before you’re ready.
At the end of the day, you just gotta launch. Stop waiting for the perfect time, or for everything to be 100% in place. The honest truth is:everything that’s ever been done could have been better. Launch now. Get your work out into the world.
+ Keep the end game in mind.
How good is it going to feel when you launch your personal project out into the world — knowing you gave it everything you had?
Use that feeling to drive you, and pull you towards the finish line. It can also help to have a bit of a reward for yourself, once you’ve launched. Maybe you can take a couple days off… Maybe there’s something you wanna buy for yourself.
What will help pull you closer to the finish line?
So I hope these tips will help you get your personal project out into the world!
When you do launch, be sure to hit up Death to Stock on Twitter and show us what you’ve been up to.