What's Stopping You From Completing a "Must-Do" Project?“Almost everyone has some important project they can’t seem to get to,” writes Michael Hyatt, bestselling author of Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World and one of the Top 30 Most Influential Leaders in Business in 2015, according to American Management Association. People are always telling him they’re too busy to take on anything new, let alone finish what’s already on their plate.

“I totally get it,” he says. “My calendar is jam-packed, too. But this belief - and that’s what it is, a belief - also keeps us from making the progress we’d like to see.”

Hyatt offers some valuable tips for getting more out of your precious time.

Six Tips to Get More Time to Complete Your "Must-Do" Project

Be Real

There are 168 hours in a week, regardless of who you are or what you do—“including presidents, captains of industry, and the homeless man you passed on the way to work.” But starting and completing your important project or initiative isn’t so much about time management as it is about priority management.

“The question is: How important is this project compared to everything else in your life?”

No More Excuses

There’s always a reason not to get something done. You have other responsibilities. You don’t have the energy. There are social or familiar commitments to honor.

But, says Hyatt, if you want to move forward, “you have to accept responsibility for where you are now.” Your present situation has come about by choices you’ve made - “not all bad, by the way, but yours nonetheless.”

Are you ready to make new choices to get things done?

Set a Due Date

Open-ended projects are always more difficult to address, let alone complete. “The way to turn a dream into a goal is to put a due date on it,” Hyatt says. This one simple action “will often create the urgency you need to get going.”

Know What’s at Stake

To find time to finish that vital project, it’s critically important to know why you’re doing it.

“The way to overcome inertia (or keep going when you want to quit) is to understand clearly what you gain if you do your project and what you lose if you don’t.”

Hyatt suggests writing your reasons down in a series of bullet-points and referring to them often.

What Gets Scheduled, Gets Done

Unless you “literally block out time on your calendar to focus on your project,” nothing will ever get done. Set up appointments with yourself and stick to them.

Honor Your Commitments

Who hasn’t looked at an unfinished project and thought, I can always do this later, right?

“The key is to honor your commitment to your project as though it were an uber-important meeting with an uber-important person,” Hyatt says. If you really want to complete the project, you have to say no to other demands on your time.

Finally, after following the steps above and actually completing that important initiative, Hyatt recommends making time to celebrate.

It’s not easy. “As soon as I check something off, I refocus on the next objective,” he says. “Ultimately, this doesn’t serve me or the people I work with well.”

Acknowledge what you’ve achieved and thank the people who helped you. Otherwise, you risk burning out your team and yourself in the process.

How do you manage your most critically important priorities?

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