Are you struggling with a goal? You keep putting it off that you make no progress on it? Does you feel guilty for not doing it but not guilty enough that you actually do it? Is the thing on your worktable just staring at you… watching you… expecting you…
Sometimes you embark on a goal with intent! You’re going to do this thing and it’s gonna be awesome. Then you start to run into a hurdle. Maybe you pass that hurdle or your struggle to get over it. Then another one pops up for you. Then another… and another… Does the final idea even seem like something you still want? Here’s a test. If you accomplish the goal, will you feel a sense of pride and joy or will you feel a sense of relief? The former means you should keep working at it. The latter means you need to re-evaluate what your goals are.
I’ve gone through a lot of these kinds of things. I wanted to make furry stuff to make some cash and thought it would be a fun creative pursuit. I started making tails and making a little money from it. As time went on and I made more, I found it difficult to expand my designs and it appeared there was less interest in my tails. I exhausted the small pool of furries who wanted very basic and cheap tails. Eventually, I took the tails I couldn’t sell and gave them out at the next furry meet so at least they didn’t go to waste and some people were thankful. It never truly bothered me. I have my own career and the tails were side-money but at least I sold a few, learned quite a bit, and people were happy to have some free tails. What had bothered me was having them around for so long!
Much later, I decided pre-made partials were worth a shot. I knew about sewing and cutting fur already so I wanted to build on that. Only problem was I had no idea where to start with foam. I hung out with fursuit makers, gleaning what little advice I could. Then I started going for it. I cut up foam, tried to shape it as best I could. I spent probably 10 hours just on shaping the foam. I probably spent 15 hours on figuring out how to make handpaws. I learned a lot more about these things. However, it was starting to drag on and become even more difficult. The time invested into it was looking really bad for how much money I thought I could get from it. Even if I did finish this goal, I wasn’t going to feel great. I sure wasn’t going to put myself through this again to make another one!
Time is not a chain
Just because you’ve invested a lot of time into something doesn’t mean you should stick it out. It’s the equivalent of “throwing good money after bad.” An example is the game Paragon. They invested a lot into it but it flopped to the competition. They invested more into it to try to distinguish themselves and kept things running as long as they could. Eventually they couldn’t do it anymore and the best they could do with their 12 million dollar investment is earn some brownie points with the gaming community as they released all their assets for free to let other developers use them.
My point with that example is you’re spending your time on your goals. If your goal has lost all of its luster and no longer brings you any excitement, don’t stick it out just because you invested that time. Take what you learned and move on! You have my permission so don’t feel guilty either!
I do a lot of things and change my mind a lot!
Do you make a habit out of exploring a new thing and then you eventually decide it’s not for you? Do you hop from project to project, never finishing one? Some might say you’re undisciplined. That very well might be true but I think exploring and trying new things is incredibly important to personal growth and discovering what you want out of life. When you find what you really want to do, the hurdles won’t be obstacles. They’ll become challenges. It won’t be easy but keep thinking about that awesome goal until your eyes sparkle and stay productive!
I would much rather you be productive at something you enjoy that forcing yourself to be productive at something you hate!