We know that most everyone sets New Year’s plans and resolutions. The things you’re determined to put into reality. Aside from exercising more or losing weight, these resolutions often include completing DIY projects. The things you want to build, take apart or clean up. But the reality is that the majority of us don’t actually follow through with completing these DIY goals. So here are 5 tips to help you complete your DIY projects.
Tips to Complete Your DIY Projects
- Don’t be too hard on yourself. Let’s just say Rome wasn’t built in a day. Translated, your backyard isn’t going to transform itself in a day. Depending on the size of your DIY project, you’ll need to set realistic expectations. Painting the doghouse or stringing lights around the patio will likely get done in a day. But building a chicken coop, redesigning your patio living space, building a new back porch, planting your flower beds, or constructing the veggie garden likely won’t. So set realistic expectations and don’t beat yourself up if things don’t get done exactly in the time frame you thought they would.
- Write it down and tell a friend. Instead of relying on the “Just Do It” mentality and thinking about your projects, write down what you want to do and tell a friend. Sharing and talking about it with someone adds an extra layer of accountability that can help lead to follow through. If your friends are now razzing you about getting it done, you might “Just Do It” after all (in part, to get them off your back).
- Make a plan, then a list. The reality is projects are like new habits—they don’t just happen with good intentions and willpower. You won’t lose 10 pounds by simply thinking about it. Projects often don’t get done because we never make a plan. It takes a bit of organization to make things happen—and let’s face it, winging it often ends up looking like that’s what happened. So make a plan to make it happen. Then write a list of the supplies you need. If you want to keep bees or chickens in your backyard, you should probably start by figuring out where you’re going to put them, and the equipment you’ll need to keep them.
- Caveat . . . Be realistic. It’s okay to write out all of the things you want to do. Of course, there’s a never-ending list of projects to transform your backyard into the unique and amazing space you want it to be. But when it comes to DIY follow through, pick one project at a time. So when you make that plan and write that list, you’re just doing it for one project. Otherwise, the tendency is to get overwhelmed and abandon ship. And then you’ll have to focus again on not being too hard on yourself.
- Schedule it. Finally, you’ve chosen your project, told your friends about it, written a list and bought the materials. Now, create a schedule for follow-through. You write work meetings or fishing trips on your calendar, so also schedule and block out time to get your backyard projects done. Otherwise, you’re going to have a tool shed or garage filled with the supplies for all the projects you didn’t complete. And that’s no fun, especially if your buddies are still razzing you about not getting them done.
Be sure to check out our Original Series, Done-In-A-Weekend Projects for inspiration and how to’s for upping your outdoor living lifestyle.