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Motivation Follows Action

This has really been my first week of “summer.” School runs through mid-June here, and then there’s Reunion to keep us busy, and then sophomore portfolios to read and annual reports to write. Then I always need a week of down time before my brain can shift gears from Interruption Mode to Project Mode, so I spend that week sweeping up the crumbs from the school year, reading things, filing things, tossing things, and generally resetting my brain and my work space. Then comes the equally important week of vacation with my family during which my goal is to be as boring as possible.

Which brings us to this week. This week kicks off the summer projects. Some are really interesting and some are just necessary, but somehow I have to motivate myself to get through them all. So this year I’m trying a new approach: Motivation Follows Action. I say that all the time, and I find it’s true for me, so now I’m trying to put it into practice in a more systematized way.

Here’s the plan. I’ve posted my list of big summer projects on my wall in big letters. Each day, I have to touch at least two of them, no matter how minor the touch. There will be other things that crop up (there always are) so this leaves me plenty of wiggle room, but at least I’ll be making progress for sure.

So far, this is working well. So far I’ve pretty consistently thought, “I don’t really want to work on x but if all I do is figure out where the old file is on the server so that I can update it later, that’ll be a step,” and then find myself doing a morning’s worth of work on the project.

Motivation follows action so far. Fingers crossed that it continues!

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