As I recently shared, my husband and I have been working on remodeling our deck and backyard. It was to be a simple clean-up and update, but it ended up becoming much more. As we worked, we found extra things that needed to be added to the to-do list. Our wish list also changed as we explored the possibilities of creating something bigger and better.
As we finished applying the third coat of deck restorer, we stepped back to look at what we had accomplished and discuss what was left to do. We realized that somewhere in the process, we lost sight of what we set out to do. We lost sight of the reason that we were doing this project in the first place. We got caught up in the moment, and the hopes for a deck and yard that rivaled those shown in the home and garden magazines. We had already gone over budget, spent way more time on the work then we planned, and had changed our simple plans to those of grandeur beyond our available time and means, and we were nowhere near done.
Starting every project, journey, task or job with knowing the reason behind the doing or pursuing is the key to keeping on track. Keeping sight of the reason helps us to focus on the goal. It also helps us to accomplish great things more efficiently and effectively.
Obviously, this did not happen with our project. We started with the reason, then during the process let it go and got sidetracked - following bunny trail after bunny trail. Crushed stone paths, great! Fountain feature... Why Not!! Table top fire pit surrounded by seating for twelve… A Must!!! (Note: our deck and back yard are no larger than your average doublewide driveway.)
This is why, the “Why” or “Reason” that we do something is so important. More essential is keeping that reason in the forefront of the process. Trust me on this point… Do Not Lose Sight on the Reason behind the actions.
There are a LOT of books, podcasts, YouTube videos and other sources on finding the Why in our life, jobs, relationships, basically anything that we pursue. This plethora of information explains that the reason why is the place to start in anything we do. We need to find the reason or why and use it as the starting point and as our directional pointer throughout what we are pursuing. Keep your eye on the prize and your feet planted in your why/reason.
As for our deck, we took a deep breath and discussed what we really needed to get accomplished. We put the reason behind what we were doing at the top of the list. We went back to our original goal and our desire to keep it simple. When we finished the project, it was not going to win any backyard of the year awards. It is, however, what we planned, and met the reason that we started it. (Final Note: I did get my way, and we do have a string of hanging lights!!)
· Have you ever started a project without a clear why/reason? How did it go? Where there any frustrations or complications? Was the goal clear?
· Have you accomplished a project with a clear purpose, vision and plan? How did it help the process?
· Nietzche said: “He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how.” What are your thoughts around this quote?