Every project manager knows the amount of energy, time, and discipline it takes to complete a substantial project. However, the completion of a mammoth undertaking is usually the beginning of another major one. How can you beat fatigue and the complacency that is inherent in such undertakings? Following are three techniques to help you make a successful transition between significant initiatives.
Avoid Rushing to Your Next Project
First, don’t rush too quickly to your next big thing. If procrastination involves postponing important tasks, “precrastination” is jumping hastily into tasks. Our brain works like an engine; it needs rest after a long drive. Give yourself enough time to unplug and recharge. Do harmless procrastination: Take breaks long enough to prevent burnout and short enough to avoid having to bite off more than you can chew later. Is there a place you have always wanted to visit but never had the time to? This may be the ideal time to please yourself.
Learn from Experience
Then, bring your experience to the next project. A successfully completed project is a succession of failures conducive to learning and growth. Ask yourself: how can my failures inform my next project? Use that knowledge as raw material for your next endeavor.
Finally, be creative. The execution of an enormous project may leave us vulnerable to the “I-have-done-this-before” mindset. While you must learn from past successes and failures, you must think heuristically. Explore fresh perspectives on problems and challenge your assumptions. After all, if there is one way to maintain your competitive edge, it’s through your novel thinking.
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