Conquer Your Unfinished Projects: Proven Strategies For Success

Do you have a number of unfinished projects on the go? Are you the kind of person who starts an ambitious project but never seems to finish it?

If so, you're not alone! Many of us have plenty of unfinished projects in our lives that are waiting for their moment in the sun, but it can be hard to drum up enough motivation or find the time necessary to bring them across the finish line. It's often a lack of organisation or clarity of focus that gets in the way of progress.

Incomplete work or personal projects don’t have to stay stagnant forever though—by taking a few simple steps, we can pick up where we left off and learn how to reach our goals quickly and efficiently!

In this guide, you'll find actionable tips for creating a well-thought-out plan as well as strategising how to best tackle the tasks ahead of you so that you can move past procrastination once and for all—resulting in more finished (and even successful) projects!

 Female creative lady working on an unfinished project

Understanding Your Unfinished Projects

Before you can begin to conquer your unfinished projects, it’s important to take a step back and assess what exactly is holding you back from completing the creative process.

Are there certain tasks that are more difficult than others? Do you lack the resources or skills necessary to complete the project? Or do you simply not have enough time in the day to dedicate to it?

Understanding these will help you create a plan of attack that is tailored to your specific needs.

Identifying why unfinished projects linger

Identifying why your projects are only partially complete is the first step to conquering them. It can be difficult to pinpoint the exact reason why a project has been left unfinished, but there are some common reasons that can help you identify what’s holding you back.

These include a lack of resources, a lack of skills, or simply not having enough time in the day to dedicate to it. By understanding these factors, you can create a plan of attack that is tailored to your specific needs and get closer to reaching 100% completion on your projects.

One of the most common reasons for unfinished projects is a lack of motivation. If you’re not feeling inspired or excited about a project, it can be hard to stay focused and make progress.

Finally, time constraints can also be a major factor in unfinished projects. If you don’t have enough hours in the day to dedicate to your project, it can be hard to make progress.

Examining emotional and mental barriers to completion

Another element to strongly consider when trying to gain clarity on why you have unfinished projects is to examine any emotional or mental barriers that may be preventing you from completing them.

Some questions to ask yourself include:

  • Do you feel overwhelmed by the project?
  • Are there certain tasks that make you anxious or uncomfortable?
  • Do you feel like the project is too big and daunting to tackle?

Understanding and acknowledging these emotions can help provide clarity on why a project has been left unfinished and how best to move forward.

Anxieties about projects, depression, and low mood are all common and play a role in preventing you from completing projects, and that is OK. When you are feeling low, it is exceptionally hard to do anything you don't really want to do or that involves a lot of energy.

Therefore, at times when you are feeling low and have an exceptionally busy brain, please make sure you take time out to breathe, smell the roses, and be kind to yourself. Your mental health needs to be your top priority!

Journaling is another great way to figure out why you're stuck or why you have unfinished projects. Here at OCCO London, we have developed The Morning Mindset Journal, which will help you understand your thoughts and create mental clarity.

 Creative entrepreneur completing unfinished project

Getting Started With Unfinished Projects

Once you have identified the reasons why your projects are unfinished, it’s time to get started!

The key to success is to break down the project into smaller, manageable tasks. This will help you stay focused and motivated as you work towards completing each task.

Breaking the task down into smaller, more manageable steps

Start by breaking down a project into smaller, more manageable steps in order to reach 100% completion.

Breaking the task down into smaller chunks can help make the project seem less daunting and more achievable. This will also help you stay focused and motivated as you work towards completing each step of the project.

Additionally, it can be helpful to set realistic goals for yourself and track your progress along the way. This will help you stay on track and give you a sense of accomplishment when you reach each milestone.

Prioritising tasks to create a clear plan of action

Prioritising tasks is an important step in creating a clear plan of action for conquering unfinished projects.

Start by making a list of all the tasks that need to be completed and then ranking them in order of importance. This will help you to focus on the most important tasks first and ensure that you are making progress towards completing the project.

If you struggle with figuring out which tasks to prioritise and which ones you can delegate, then it's worth taking a look at The Priority Pad.

Setting specific goals for yourself

Setting specific goals for yourself is a great way to ensure that you stay motivated and make progress on your unfinished projects. This isn't just about setting out a completion time; it's about making it far more detailed and something you can make an action plan from.

Start by setting what's called SMART goals, which consist of specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound goals.

For example, if you have an unfinished project that needs to be completed by the end of the month, such as a product guide, then your goal could be, "I will collate all text and image content into the product guide so it is complete and ready for printing by the 30th of March at 5 pm."

This will help to keep you focused and motivated as you work towards completing your project.

Outline a timeline

Once you have identified the most important tasks and set specific goals, it's time to outline a timeline for completing them. This will help you plan out when you can work on each task and provide clarity on how long it will take to complete them.

Creating an action plan is key in order to ensure that you are making progress towards your goal. Start by breaking down each task into smaller, more manageable steps and then assigning a timeline for each action step. This will help to keep you focused and motivated as you work towards completing your project.

 Creative musician, completing unfinished project

Overcoming Challenges When Working On Unfinished Projects

When working on unfinished projects, it is inevitable that you will face challenges along the way. It is important to remember that these challenges are part of the process and should not be seen as roadblocks.

The key to overcoming any challenge when working on unfinished projects is to take a step back and assess the situation. Ask yourself what is causing the challenge and how you can best address it.

For example, if you are struggling to find the time to work on your project, then it might be worth looking at ways to streamline your workflow or delegate some of the tasks.

Recognizing and dealing with procrastination

Procrastination is a common problem when it comes to tackling unfinished projects. It can be difficult to stay motivated and focused on the task at hand, especially if it is something that you are not particularly interested in or find challenging.

The key to overcoming procrastination is to recognise when it is happening and then take steps to address it. Start by breaking down the task into smaller, more manageable chunks, and then set yourself realistic goals and deadlines.

A great tool that I often use, particularly when completing tasks that you really don't want to do, is a Pomodoro timer, which allocates 25 minutes of 100% focused working time, followed by a 5-minute break. You repeat this four times and then have a half-hour break.

Establishing boundaries with family and working to ensure the completion of projects

It is important to establish boundaries with family and work when tackling unfinished projects. This will help to ensure that you have the time and space needed to focus on your project without any distractions.

Set aside specific times during the day or week when you can dedicate yourself to working on your project. Make sure that these times are respected by family, friends, and colleagues so that you can work in peace and quiet.

Utilising motivating strategies to overcome obstacles and self-doubt

When working on unfinished projects, it is important to stay motivated and focused. This can be difficult when you are faced with obstacles and self-doubt, or it's simply a project that you can't be bothered to complete but that needs to be done.

One of the best ways to stay motivated is to set small, achievable goals that will help you move closer to your overall goal. Celebrate each milestone as you reach it and reward yourself for your hard work.

 Female creative entrepreneur working to complete an unfinished project

Managing Resources For Progress On Unfinished Projects

When working on unfinished projects, it is important to ensure that you have the necessary resources available to make progress. This includes both physical and mental resources such as time, money, energy, and motivation.

It is important to plan ahead and allocate resources accordingly. Make sure that you have a clear idea of what needs to be done and how much time it will take. This will help you to manage your resources effectively and ensure that you are able to make progress on your project.

Making use of available resources such as mentors, workshops, or physical materials

When tackling unfinished projects, it is important to make use of available resources such as mentors, workshops, or physical materials.

Mentors can provide valuable advice and guidance on how to approach the project and help you stay motivated and focused. Workshops are a great way to learn new skills and techniques that will help you complete your project.

Physical materials such as books, magazines, timber, or metalwork can also be used to help you progress on your project. If you are looking to use some wood, for example, rather than going and buying it and incurring a cost, consider sourcing offcuts where possible to help mitigate any costs.

Taking into account external factors that could impact the progress of the project

When working on unfinished projects, it is important to take into account external factors that could impact the progress of the project. This includes things such as weather conditions, the availability of materials or resources, and even changes in government regulations.

It is vital to plan ahead and consider any potential external factors that could affect your project. This will help you anticipate any issues and plan accordingly. For example, if you are working on a project that requires outdoor work, you may need to factor in the weather conditions and plan for any potential delays.

 Creative leader working on completing an unfinished project

Staying Motivated While Working On The Project

Staying motivated while working on an unfinished project can be challenging; therefore, it is important to set realistic goals and break the project down into smaller, achievable tasks. This will help you stay focused and make progress towards your overall goal.

Celebrating small successes along the way

Celebrating small successes along the way is an important part of staying motivated when working on unfinished projects. It is important to recognise and reward yourself for each milestone achieved, no matter how small.

It can be helpful to set up a reward system for yourself, such as a treat or a day off after completing a certain task or milestone.

Developing a system for tracking progress towards the goal

Developing a system for tracking progress towards the goal is a key part of staying motivated and ensuring that you are making progress on your project. This can be done by setting up a timeline with milestones and deadlines, as well as creating a checklist of tasks that need to be completed.

It is also helpful to set up reminders or notifications to help keep you on track and ensure that you are meeting your deadlines.

Overall, tackling unfinished projects can be a daunting task; however, making use of available resources, and taking into account external factors that could impact the project will help you finally complete that unfinished project of yours.

Embracing feedback and criticism

Embracing feedback and criticism is a standard part of completing any project, especially unfinished ones. It is important to be open to constructive criticism from mentors, peers, and other professionals in order to ensure that the project is progressing in the right direction.

It can be helpful to set up a system for receiving feedback on your project, such as asking for regular reviews or critiques from those with more experience.

In summary, tackling unfinished projects can be a daunting task; however, with the right strategies and resources, you can conquer your unfinished projects and achieve success.

By taking into account external factors that could impact the project, staying motivated while working on it, celebrating small successes along the way, developing a system for tracking progress towards the goal, and embracing feedback and criticism, you will be able to make progress on your project and finally complete it.

I am sure you have some questions, so I have outlined some of the most commonly asked questions on the topic of getting unfinished projects finished.

 Creative lady completing unfinished project

Frequently Asked Questions

Having explored everything you need to know about unfinished projects and how to get them completed, we have tried to provide answers to any questions you may have below:

What are the best strategies for finishing projects?

The best strategies for finishing projects are to break the project down into smaller, achievable tasks, set realistic goals and deadlines, celebrate small successes along the way, develop a system for tracking progress towards the goal, and embrace feedback and criticism.

It is also important to make use of available resources and take into account external factors that could impact the project. Also, setting up a reward system for yourself can help to keep you motivated and on track.

How can I focus on my unfinished projects instead of getting sidetracked?

In order to focus on your unfinished projects and avoid getting sidetracked, it is important to set realistic goals and deadlines for yourself.

It can also be helpful to break the project down into smaller tasks that are more manageable. Setting up reminders or notifications can also help keep you on track and ensure that you are meeting your deadlines. However, it is important to remember to take regular breaks in order to stay motivated and productive without burning yourself out.

What techniques should I use to stay motivated and finish my projects?

In order to stay motivated and finish your projects, it is important to set realistic goals and deadlines for yourself.

Breaking the project down into smaller tasks that are more manageable can also help you stay focused and on track. What's more, setting up a reward system for yourself can be a great way to stay motivated and celebrate small successes along the way.

A reward doesn't have to be anything big or expensive; it can be as simple as taking a break or treating yourself to something small. What matters is that it motivates you and pushes you to get the project or task completed.

How do I determine which tasks need to be completed first?

When determining which tasks need to be completed first, it is important to prioritise the tasks based on their importance and urgency. Start by making a list of all the tasks that need to be completed and then ranking them in order of importance.

If this is something you struggle with, check out The Priority Pad, which will make prioritising a breeze!

It can also be helpful to break down larger tasks into smaller, more manageable chunks. This will make it easier for you to focus on one task at a time and make progress towards completing the project.

Are there any tips or tricks I can use to better track my progress?

Yes, there are several tips and tricks you can use to better track your progress.

Firstly, it is important to break the project down into smaller tasks that are more manageable. This will make it easier for you to focus on one task at a time and make progress towards completing the project.

Secondly, set up a system for tracking your progress. This could be as simple as creating a checklist or using a project management tool such as Trello or Notion.

Finally, it is important to set realistic goals and deadlines for yourself. This will help you stay motivated and on track with your project. Setting up reminders or notifications can also help keep you on track and ensure that you are meeting your deadlines.

How can I avoid sacrificing quality when rushing to finish an unfinished project?

When rushing to finish an unfinished project, it is important to remember that quality should never be sacrificed. Quality should always be the top priority when completing any task or project.

To avoid sacrificing quality, it is important to set realistic goals and deadlines for yourself. This will help you stay focused and on track with your project without having to rush through it.

It can also be helpful to break down larger tasks into smaller, more manageable chunks. This will make it easier for you to focus on one task at a time and make progress towards completing the project without sacrificing quality.

Creative designer completing unfinished project 

Conclusion

Unfinished projects can be life suckers and overwhelm us with their not-so-increasing completion rate, but with a few smart strategies and discipline, it is possible to get back on track and finish our pending projects successfully!

The key is having a proper plan in place, setting realistic goals, staying focused and motivated, breaking down your project into manageable tasks, tracking your progress, asking for help when necessary, and learning how to prioritise quality in order to avoid sacrificing it when pushing through those last stages of completion on tight deadlines!

Taking these steps will ensure that you conquer your unfinished projects once and for all!

I hope you have found this article thoroughly beneficial, and if you think that one friend who never gets anything finished could benefit from it, ping it across to them!

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