A checklist to finish – AND START – any project

Ever want to do something – and it stops with the wanting?  Nothing ever gets done?


I see this over and over.  In others.  In myself.


It’s human nature.  Why?  Well, that’s for another post.  What’s more important is showing you how to move forward.  See, we don’t always have to know WHY something happens to overcome it.


I have a coaching client who wants to take on a new project to really move him and his career forward.  In the past, he has had a lot of of ideas – and just as much procrastination.  I have to tell you, everyone has ideas.  I see it in most all of my clients.  

It’s the putting it into action that separates the ones who have and the ones that want.  Are you ready to move from a wanter to a haver?  Good.


Here’s what we came up with for him as a “checklist” to read over every day, and especially when he gets stuck;

I’m OK with FEAR and being UNCOMFORTABLE – As you may know, we don’t grow unless we experience some resistance.  I teach that it’s GOOD to have these feelings – otherwise, we stay in our comfort zone and we never move anywhere.  If you are starting a project that is going to stretch you, get ready for these feelings.  And be OK with them.  It’s really that easy.

I’m UNATTACHED with the POPULARITY of the End Product – When I started Executive Joy!, I would create a web page, a blog post, a video, all sorts of things.  I would send it out to say 3 friends, and get 3 opinions back.  I got freaked out and started over with each one.  Then I realized I wasn’t producing ANYTHING.  And each one was looking at it differently.  When you create something, you have a vision for it.  Your collaborators can’t understand your vision.  And to truly create something great, you have to be true to your vision.  It’s OK to have collaborators, people who help you.  Though be specific with them.  “Hey Joe, how’s my grammar on this web page.”  “Hi Sally, does the resolution on this video look OK on your MAC?”  DON’T ask them if they like it!  Just DO IT!

Don’t take anything PERSONALLY
– When someone gives you their opinion, even if they don’t like it, it’s not a reflection of you, it’s feedback for you to evaluate and possibly change your product.  That’s all.  And this extends into other areas – my client had to ask others to help with other areas of his project, though he had resistance to asking for help.  Though if someone said “NO”, a perfectly acceptable response, they are saying “NO” to the time, the activity, whatever, not no to YOU.  So Ask!  And expect some No’s!!!

 – If there is one rule that I like best, it’s this.  Just get something out there.  Get it done.  Do it 80%.  At least it’s done.  Then days or weeks later, if you want to make it 90 or 95%, then go back and improve it.  Because most likely your 80% is good enough.  Our EGO plays games with us, and uses perfection as a bypass.  So bypass your EGO.  If you find yourself stalled on a step, just come to completion, move on, and if you want, go back later.  Remember, ALMOST ANYTHING can be changed later.  Any decision is better than no decision.  And chances are you don’t have enough information, or a crystal ball, to make the “PERFECT” decision anyway!

– Any project needs a Leader!  Embrace this role.  Be the creator.  If people aren’t in line with your vision, then replace them.  You have to be true to what you want to create.  Or it will end up in an ugly mess.  If people sign on with you, they are signing on with you as the leader.  You actually LET THEM DOWN if you don’t lead.  You are breaking that contract.  Leadership will greatly increase the speed and effectiveness of your project.  So own it.

– First, set your next deadlines that are either days or a week ahead.  Just work on that one thing.  And get it done.  Even if it’s just “create a plan.”  “Call Frank to see if he can help.”  Then have some other milestones.  The first time you see you aren’t going to make something, be HONEST with yourself and change the timeline.  This keeps you in integrity.  This point helps you with some of the other points above.

This project is for FUN and LEARNING
– If you focus on having everything you do be fun, and when things don’t go as planned you LEARN from them, then it will be a breeze.  And your final project will be so much better than if you stress about everything and get so tied up in the outcome.  I know that’s paradoxical though I think you know what I mean.


It’s one of my favorite things to do, help clients through projects.  I learn so much myself, and I get to see them finally CREATE.


So now GO FORWARD.  What is the FIRST THING you can do to get this project started?

Do it.  Then do the next one.  YES IT MAY NOT BE PERFECT!  Yes you may have to re-do some of it.  Though think of how much you will learn!


Post a Facebook post, let us know how you are doing on your project!  And if you run into any blocks, post that as well, I’ll give you some spot coaching:  www.facebook.com/executivejoy