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The curse of the incomplete project

Updated on July 4, 2014

Wedding Picture: 5yrs old

I have been working on this for 5yrs now...or at least I keep saying I will get back to it.
I have been working on this for 5yrs now...or at least I keep saying I will get back to it. | Source

Unfinished

It feels like a curse. So many things unfinished. I have started so many things throughout my life that I simply have not gotten back to. This includes a story I have been working on since Junior high...twenty years ago.

Why does this happen? Is it lack of motivation, or absentmindedness? Could it simply be that there is something not quite right about the project so you need to set it aside for a little bit to get a better perspective and then work on a different project for a little while.

Sometimes I feel like my unfinished projects are accumulating like that scene in Wall*E where on Earth he is cleaning the towers of trash. My projects have gotten so numerous that they feel like rubble that just needs to be mushed up and popped out like a neat little block.

I have story upon story sitting around for my next draft. I have pictures waiting for more detail. I have sketches drawn for sculptures I plan to do. I started to get drawings and paintings done for a show but I only did a couple and set it aside, deciding that I was not using the right paper. I have not even finished a video game on my own.


Incomplete Sculpture Project

I got as far as this sketch and actually making the mouse and started to make the owl until it got stolen and the mouse broke.
I got as far as this sketch and actually making the mouse and started to make the owl until it got stolen and the mouse broke. | Source

What's my problem?

With some of my projects I feel that if I stop working on it to take a break I will not get back to it. I try to plow straight through. This works on some occasions but it is near impossible to have enough time to work straight through. There is too much going on. Not to mention now that I have a child I can only work in little intervals between giving him attention and trying to keep my new world organized.

Other projects I feel that I need to change the material but when I get the material I feel like I should think on it a bit to make sure that is definitely the material I want to use. This leads to me somehow misplacing the project to find it later when I am currently working on another project, which in turn causes me to stop working on both.

Another project I was working on I had designed an owl looking down on a mouse. I made the sketch and even made the mouse and began to make the owl. The mouse broke, and the owl was stolen, I have not gotten back to remake the two critters.

Part of me thinks that over the years I have accumulated so much stuff I need to finish that I simply have fried my brain. Heaven forbid I ever get my wedding video together. My honeymoon video I sat down for 2 weeks straight and spliced everything together. My computer crashed. I might also use mechanical issues or any issues as a means to set a project aside.

I find that a lot if not all of my projects are done with a certain mental quality. If I put the project aside for a little bit I put it in danger of losing whatever was in my mind or mood at the time. Thus creating a project that needs to sit around until I can feel it out again.

I made a list once to see all the things I needed to do....yikes!

I wish I did not make that list.


Making a project that never needs completeness

One thing I have done is created a project that will never be done. A garden that will always change but feel completed.
One thing I have done is created a project that will never be done. A garden that will always change but feel completed. | Source

Solution?

So continue to ignore all my projects? Probably not.

I hated creating that list, but I think it helped put everything in perspective too. I found that projects done for others were not on my list of unfinished. I also found that almost all my projects were in the category of I will get back to it later. Thus my fear of not working straight through a project is sound.

I decided that There is no way I can skip out on taking a break from a project. It worked out when I was a loner and could work on a project and not worry about being anti social. Its another matter now that I am married and have to share my time willingly with my family. I am learning to pace myself...its very hard. I will take lots of notes and create lots of lists of current projects. This way I can take a break and when I get a moment again I can look at my notes and list to see what was going on in my head at the time. This is important as I have certain mindsets with certain projects.

I also created a project that can never be completed. My garden project is ever growing. Every year it is a little different. I complete it by the fourth of July. I have the satisfaction of completing it with the mindset that if there is something not quite right with it I can fix it by next July fourth. It is actually quite fulfilling.

I also started to categorize my projects and determine a routine to begin to knock of a project from each category.

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