Do Micro-Projects

Yesterday I wrote how I wanted to learn to be prolific. But this doesn’t just mean writing.

Being prolific for me involves any creative art, whether that be writing, drawing, programming or performing. Even volunteering can generate the sense of accomplishment I want to achieve by being prolific.

To foster this aim, I’ve decided to label my projects based on the time required:

  • Mini: 1 week / 5 days / 40 hours
  • Micro: 1 day / 8 hours
  • Nano: 1 hour

Besides longer term projects and businesses, I want to work on smaller projects, projects that take an hour or a day. Both because my time is limited, and because I like the lessons it teaches. It teaches me to separate effort from value, and focus on accomplishment in a limited timeframe.

August 19th was Whyday, a day dedicated to Why the Lucky Stiff. One of the ideas for celebrating Whyday is to work within a tight constraint. Tight constraints help foster creativity and show us what we can truly achieve.

For me, that tight constraint is time. I believe that learning to be highly productive in short bursts of time can transform my life and help me become prolific.

Three weeks ago a group of us convened for a day to redesign the web site of a local non-profit. While we didn’t get complete everything that day, we got a lot accomplished. Way more accomplished than anyone had thought. And it has become a launchpad for us to quickly finish the design.

Even if I fail at a micro-project, I’ve likely gotten a great start and can finish it in one additional cycle. Defining projects as micro and nano will help me to scope the project so I bite off only what I can chew. And thus, enjoy myself that much more.

What projects have you done in less than a day or an hour? What is your advice in getting these done?

[Written and edited in 15 minutes]

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