Boost Your Confidence by Managing Your Chaos, Scoping Your Enthusiasm, Closing Projects and Finishing Something

Ever since I was young, I was known as someone who forgot stuff. During my elementary years, my mom assigned a boy to look after me and pick up stuffs I left behind in the class.
I hated school and only when I got older I learned perhaps it was probably too structured.
Some personality expert says that as you grow older you become more of who you are. I guess he/she is right. I still forget stuff, leave things behind and can’t stand anything too structured. When I was a university, I went to see a psychologist to get help to be on time and to finish things. I didn’t show up for the third meeting because I overslept which should have been fine; I could just schedule another session. But I quit cold-turkey and never returned. So not only I failed to be on time to get help on being on time, I also fail to finish my therapy sessions to get help with finishing stuff.

My tendency to let things spills all over the place resulted in a heap of late fee for not paying my bills on time and a whole bunch of other stuff.

As I got even older, some of my bosses say that I was adaptable and flexible. I think they meant was they didn’t know what to do with my professional development.

When I needed to speak in front of people and explain something new, I would prepare a script, but after a few sentences, I would forget my note and start rambling. (I didn’t forget my note, but somehow I felt compelled to stray from the note.)

In my early 20s, I was horrible at time as if I had no perception of it.

My MBTI type description reads: “have difficulty to finish project and lack follow-through,” which is bad according to Steve Pavlina. He said, “Your overall results in life largely depend on your ability to follow through until you achieve completion. Many projects produce essentially zero results if they’re 90% complete. The key results only appear when you reach 100% completion.”

I got suspicious that maybe I even had ADHD, but perhaps I just wanted put a finger on the source of my chaos.

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The Making of a Right Brain Project Manager

At some point in my flexible, changing career, I got involved with project management, not only I had to do things according to plan, but I created this plan, ensured that others would stick to the plan and following closely to what were agreed and what need to be delivered. To add to the drama, the people involved were Germans and Germanic Czechs who were horrifyingly punctual, time-oriented, planning and precise in their communication.
I got seriously stressed out; I thought God wanted to play a joke on me. But I knew this would provide the right environment for me to work on my under-developed areas. After all, flexi, unstructured, disorganized people still need to do something and deliver something in their life.

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Life A Project

The same people whom I didn’t want to deal with, the same kind of formality and precision I hated and the same down-to-the-day planning that I disliked to follow were precisely what I needed, to practice and made it part of my system.

If you are the kinds of people who crave novelty and start whatever captures your momentary interest, you would appreciate to learn how to scope your enthusiasm, set up a your own project environment, identify tasks, wrap them around deadlines, estimate the amount money to spend and make a plan on how to go about managing and finish it.

If “project” is in your DNA; if you live to “start” projects, would it be wise to learn the necessary skills to manage and complete it?

Repeating failure to finish the things you like to do “can produce feelings like dissatisfaction, discomfort, stress, worry, shame, and regret.” writes Steve.

I think and operate these days around projects. Almost everything I have to do which involve many activities, I treat it as project. Sometimes I finish something just for the sake of finishing something. Recently I completed a mega project, to see all 50 countries in Europe. At some point I wanted to stop, but I forced myself to complete to prove to myself that I could see something to the end, something big.

“Project” is an important concept that you need to get used to if you want to finish something. Ask David Allen, the person who brings order to our universe and teaches us to Get Thing Done™. His highly popular and effective GTD ™ focuses on single-step task and multiple-steps project.

Think PROJECT. Do PROJECT.

And close it.

Always be closing. (No, I’m not a salesman. I just stole their favourite line.)

  • Cristina

    Wow Cindy! It’s so incredible to read this article because i feel like i m reading from my own diary. A lot of the experiences you describe here are very familiar to me. I guess out society in general is quite strict (go to school, get a job, get a mortgage, get married and so on). Just as I was reading this article i interrupted a couple of times because i wanted to google a couple of things. And yes the result was that it took me much more time than normally expected for someone to read this but in the end i also learnt new things (e.g. took the ADHD test ).
    In the early years of our lives I think we all experiment and try to define our core values and personalities so I guess for ENFP personalities is complicated to out a bit of order in the chaos. But the on the bright side I guess we are the type of people who don’t live with regrets. Of course this is not a frame , every individual is different. And also I think for this type of personality is much more easier to multitask, which for sure is a great quality.
    My faourite part of this article was “If “project” is in your DNA; if you live to “start” projects, would it be wise to learn the necessary skills to manage and complete it?”. And this is because , as you might already guessed, this is a question i have to ask myself.
    Your article was very inspiring. Right now in my life I know I am in a good point where i managed to work on my ENFP weaknesses but there is always room for improvement.

    Thank you very much, Cindy! Thank you for being brave enough to share your deepest thoughts with me!