As I approach my three-year anniversary of completing a fitness competition, I reflect back onto all the various activities, challenges, projects and ideas I’ve undertaken. Whether it was releasing a manifesto, running a half marathon, leaving my marketing job, writing and publishing an e-book or launching network – there was one unifying commonality between all the endeavors.

With each thing I engaged in, a deadline was set. A due date, a completion time frame and a specific finish line. It was this seemingly simple, yet often overlooked, act that represented a critical facet in the completion of anything I set out to do.

In our world, and especially in our industry – we do not lack people with ideas, people with desire, people with wishes for what they want to achieve.

What we have a shortage of are the individuals with the drive, the grit and the push to finish their project, to hit publish on their blog or their book, to send the product out to the developer, to advertise their service to their audience.

However, setting a deadline on the onset of the project does a few really interesting things. For starters it shifts your personal perception of the project. It takes it away from merely being a hobby or something just for fun. If it is important enough to set a deadline to, it is important enough to truly invest in. From there, the deadline creates accountability. You put yourself on the hook to do it and to do it by a certain date. Now, a lot of the clutter and speedbumps that ordinarily would have gotten in the way and caused you to shelve the project can be overcome. There are far less excuses.

Lastly, setting a deadline is what helps you look at the project from the eyes of a professional because professionals complete and finish. Not everything is going to work perfectly when you send it out the door or hit publish and that is okay. What truly matters is that it, whatever it is that you choose to do, goes out to market.

Set a deadline today.

James Patrick
IG @jpatrickphoto