Focused Living, One Month at a Time

Friday, June 21, 2013

Challenge #23 May 2013: Website Waning

"Failure is the condiment that gives success its flavor."
Truman Capote

I have run out of excuses - it's time to just write this post, damn it! I have turned off the laptop wifi, turned off the sound on the iPhone.  No urgent tasks on my To Do list that can't wait, no vital work deadlines that can't be pushed past the next ninety minutes.  The house is quiet; the neighborhood is tolerably so (and I've got my earplugs handy for that pesky construction noise) so let's get to it. Oh and yes, I realize it is June 21st - believe me I've noticed how late this is going up. Sigh. 

The Intention
The past few months on this blog were about addressing procrastination and trying to get more organized and completing more tasks using consistent list-making and task-doing strategies.   So I thought (ha!) I was definitely ready for the challenge I gave myself - and yes even said out loud ahead of time to a few good friends.  We got together at the end of April to create dream boards to help identify and plan our next month's goals.  I decided that in May I would finally launch, once and for all, the scuba diving travel focused website that has been on my mind for several months.  It would be just in time for TBEX in Toronto, and I would get my business cards done and be ready for all kinds of groovy travel blogger interaction.  So what happened - and why is there still only this placeholder out there?

The Reality
Work happened.  Not exciting, but it was a full month of consistent flash flooding, mostly in the form of the endless details of conference planning, and I was drowning.  Any spare oxygen I could gasp at the surface between the floodwaters was simply not enough to breathe life into this project.  Okay, enough of the flood analogies - but I was working with a water based organization.
With all this, my brain simply had no space left to dedicate to thoughtfully designing and writing and expending creative energy into working on my website.  I canceled an appointment I had made mid-month to work on the logo and start the website design because of compelling deadlines for all the urgent conference planning details that simply overrode this "free time" project.   And anytime I had a few moments or hours away from the computer, and the endless flow of related email, I found myself being bombarded with my own thoughts about what else needed to happen to ensure a successful conference in early June, thus adding more tasks to the planning task list.
So work was the main excuse, but fear crept in there too.  I realize I am just not quite confident and decisive enough yet about the site contents and goals, and am afraid about how much time it will take to "get it right." So I have to get over this to move forward, and also mandate the time, and the energy and resources, that it will take to make it come to fruition.

A Few Things I Learned Anyway
I am passionate about multiple interests, and even knowing that I realistically can't do everything I want to, or read, or learn, or connect with everyone I want to, is a tough challenge, and I should always be working on staying focused on what is MOST important.
Taking a break and meditating (which I have been doing somewhat regularly lately, for anywhere from 5-15 minutes) or just going for a walk really helps to clear my mind - and I should do it every day.
The most important thing I am taking away from this month is the reminder that my "free time" for projects such as this needs to sacred and impenetrable, like the 90 minutes that just went by while I wrote this.  Getting to know myself better and my multitasking ways, and understanding the strategies necessary for dealing with this - what a gift, thank you Universe!
And thank you, as always, for reading.  I would love to hear if have you ever been drastically way laid from your personal goals by the unexpected?  Who hasn't really.How did you deal with it and what did you learn?


  1. I completely understand getting held up by work or kids, family, whatever our commitments are. I have a long to do list and it seems like something always comes up to slow the process down...
    The fear thing is tricky. I like the quote "A good plan excited today is better than a perfect plan next week.
    Some of the most successful people I've observed started with (I don't think horrible is too strong) less that perfect websites. I'm sure your's will be fabulous whenever you launch it, sooner better than later:)

  2. I've left projects undone and procrastinated on others. The joy of having many interests and big goals is that you're forgiven if you miss a few deadlines. In fact, think of it as evidence of a life overflowing. And forgive yourself and be gentle.... You may be late on your launch but you delivered an amazing conference for hundreds of activists! Be free. You will launch soon, when the time is right.