30 Day Mini Challenges
This is the postmortem on my latest 30 day challenge. Motivated by a pre-summer productivity slump, a recent video I watched from Google I/O 2011 by Matt Cutt’s on 30 day challenges, and the success of my first 30 day challenge it seemed like the time to try again.
Unlike my previous 30 day challenge, I decided to tackle a few smaller challenges. This challenge was made up for 4 mini challenges. These mini challenges consisted of finishing a bunch of half read books, exercising 3 days a week, watching a maximum of 2 hours of TV a week, and learning something new (Google Web Toolkit/GWT). My motivation was to clean up a bunch of half done and never started items before summer started. I usually try and tackle something creative over summer and I did not want these things hanging over me.
I feel like the most effective thing I did this time was to create 4 projects to match the 4 challenges and then add specific To Do items to each project BEFORE I started. This allowed me to look every day at what was ahead of me and how I was doing. It was also very energizing to see all those To Do items getting checked off over the 30 days.
It is really amazing how productive I can be when I clearly define goals and put some time constraints around them. I think for me the key is really the time constraint and that feeling that I should be able to do anything for 30 days. One thing I would do differently next time is post my goals up front, like I did last time. Posting the goals up front adds that extra push to follow through and not drop the ball.
This process also got me thinking of the power of finite goals, the energy created by seeing progress against those goals everyday, and using the web as a multiplier. That small observation might lead to my summer project, but that is another blog post…..