Monthly Archives: March 2019

Big Projects

There are always times when you suddenly have a big project you have to finish: you have homework from three teachers, you have a term paper due next week or you have to clean your room by the weekend and you haven’t done anything about anything for months. A lot of times when you see the big project you just stop: you freeze solid and can’t move forward at all. This does not help, and you know it, but somehow you just can’t start. Worse yet, you go off and do something easy for a while, maybe even a long while, and turn a huge project into an even more difficult project.

By wanting to step aside and do something easy you aren’t being bad but you do perhaps need more experience in things. One of the best things to remember about huge projects is the old joke: “How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.” Everything: every project, job of work, problem, snarled-up mess or whatever, is always made up of parts. Sometimes the parts of the problem seem to be glued together or like a mobile: you can’t tug on one part of it without making all the other parts move. That can certainly be frustrating! However, in cases like that you can ask for help from someone that has had a similar problem, experience or project.

If the project is not too hard, like cleaning your room or doing a term paper, you can either break it into areas or break it into parts. Say what you need is to get into your closet but your room is so full of junk that you can’t even open the folding door all the way, and it’s been like that since last Christmas. Doe it make more sense to just clear the floor in front of the closet and dump everything on the bed, including the extra stuff in the closet you don’t need? Sometimes that is the best way: cleaning by area. Or if it makes more sense to just clean up all the dirty clothes everywhere first, including the clothes under the bed, in the closet or whatever you have, then that’s the way you should do it.

It’s your project! You can do it any way that works. The only way you will fail is if you don’t do it.

Working together

In the old days in America, when a lot of people still had family farms, they used to have a saying: “Many hands make light work.” When you have other people helping you it does make things easier: there are some things you just can’t carry by yourself, or reach up high for by yourself either. It’s interesting and unusual too: sometimes when you have someone with you, it’s easier to do hard things because you feel like you have a friend beside you that makes the difficult work less scary.

However, you have to make sure that your friends understand that they are there for you: you are not there for them. Some will want to boss you around and tell you that they are only trying to help you. Well, in their minds they are, really: some people love to organize things even though they may not be their things; some like to have everything a certain way even though they don’t own everything, they can’t own everything, and certainly they shouldn’t own everything either. Sometimes they forget this and start trying to do what they want to do with their things, only it’s your things really.

You have to take such friends and ask them if they can do one job for you: organize one shelf or just arrange the books in your bookcase or just make sure all of your shoes have mates. You see: when you understand your friends, you can help them become a good work force by asking them to do things that they find easy because they are good at what needs to be done. This does take some thinking and planning! But that is part of working together: understanding each other first, even before the work begins.