Have you seen the #The100DayProject?
It was started by Elle Luna, an artist and author of several books including The Crossroads of Should and Must. Participants create one thing of something (writing, painting, ceramics, photgraphs, etc.) for one hundred consecutive days. What you create is not as important as that you do create each day, every day for one hundred days.
I did not participate on the last round of the #The100DayProject, but I enthusiastically watched and cheered on others who were doing it.
BUT, when Elise Joy talked about her participation in #The100DayProject in her podcast last week, I started thinking about it much deeper than before.
Elle chatted with artist, Allie Lehman, and they discussed a lot of what goes on when one commits to something over one hundred days. Elise Joy committed to a hundred days of pep talks featured on Instagram each day. Allie decided to pull out her art brushes and paint a full painting each day (in various sizes).
Elle Luna’s intent in #The100DayProject is that participants not only do something every day, but that they post it as well.
The interview was so good. You should listen to it, even if you don’t consider yourself to be a ‘creative.’ The women’s conversation was rich about a variety of things like the financial cost, energy, time commitment, community building and how the project changed them. Check it out here.
What I thought was fun was that as the two women finished is that they both seemed reenergized about their own journey and where their life was going. Additionally, they both had also developed new income streams. Allie decided to sell some of her paintings from #The100Day Project while Elise Joy put all of her pep talks and corresponding pictures in to a book and will be selling that soon (pre-orders are going on now).
We just never know what creative turns life will take when we commit to a path, even for 100 days.
How does this apply to you and me and why am I blogging about it?
I think all of us can benefit from a period of time of intense focus. Here’s some reasons why you might consider going forward on your own #the100DayProject.
- Doing a structured project gives yourself permission to focus on one thing and put the other good (but less important) options on the backburner.
I need this. I need to take time throughout the year to focus on doing one thing with some crazy, intense focus for a limited period of time.
Women struggle with too much to do. Or, perhaps to be more honest, we struggle with the (incorrect) fear that we have to do it all. As a result, a little bit of a lot of things gets done but not a lot happens to move us forward to where we want to be.
I only know this because I’ve been there and I battle this all the time. When I look back on my life, the most productive year was when I was super focused on a few things. Was it hard? Yep, it was strenuous at times, even tedious. But I moved with momentum and got places.
Plus, with 100 days, we aren’t saying no to the other things forever. We’re simply putting them on pause for a period of time.
- Doing something for one hundred days demands us to get organized with our time, energy and resources.
It may not be a lot of fun -especially for the spontaneous, creative types- but when we’re committed to this a lot of fluff goes out the window.
For me, I start batching things to do. Otherwise I won’t get the essential stuff done. (batch meals, social media, texts to friends/family).
I eliminate the unessential. For me, that means checking email 2-3 times a day at max, not twenty.
- The discipline of finishing is an excellent muscle to develop.
If you’re having trouble gaining momentum in an area in your life. Or, perhaps you feel like you’re in a bit of a rut and need to shake things up. Doing a project for 100 Days can be a reboot for your life.
- It will bring out stuff in you that you didn’t know you had: creativity, ideas, determination, organization, courage.
100 Days isn’t forever, but it’s still a good chunk of time. And to finish up the big, hairy goal, we usually have to change.
Doing something for 100 Days is demanding, but just like a new workout routine, it builds muscle (see #3) and releases energy and new growth.
- Hard deadlines have a way of revealing an inner strength and stamina we didn’t know we had.
Undergoing a project like this is intimidating. But if we really want it, we can do it. If you’re saying, “I could never do that,” I challenge you to rethink. Is that fear or uncertainty speaking? Is it time in life to give yourself a challenge that might make your uncomfortable?
See below for some ways to change up the idea to match with your life.
When to Do It
So…is there something stirring in your mind? If so, this might be a good time for you to start your own 100 Day Project.
When to start? There are definitely certain times of the year I think are more advantageous than others. For example, I’d rather not do this during the holidays when there is a lot going in addition to regular life.
Pick a time that will work for you. It won’t ever be easy or convenient to start, but some times are better than others.
Ways to Pivot #The100DayProject
The intent of the Elle Luna’s project was to do a completed work for one hundred days and share it. What if that doesn’t fit for you, but your want to challenge yourself?
Here’s some ideas:
- Commit to finishing a project in 100 days. It needs to require a challenge of some sort; it can’t be something you’ve done before. For example, write a book in 100 Days. Start a business or side business and have X amount of paid clients in 100 Days, exercise every day for one hundred days.
- Get some accountability. Part of the magic of #The100DayProject is the sense that you are accountable to sharing your daily work. Elise Joy talks about this on the podcast. It may be a mental pressure, but it’s a pressure nonetheless and a goal we’re committed to reach.
- Build your community. This might be a great way to connect with someone else. Can you grab a friend or someone in your community to do this with ? Stay accountable to one another.
- Make it public. Perhaps we’re not posting daily like Elle Luna and the participants in #The100DayProject but some public posting is good. Comitt to a few times a week, once a week, etc. Again, we’re setting goals for ourselves and we’re inviting others to participate with us and encourage us along the way. It might spark some interesting conversations.
I’m on my way to a retreat for the rest of this week, but starting next week (August 15th) I’ll be starting on my own #100DayProject. I’ll share more of what I’m doing next Monday.
I’m anticipating Elle Luna will restart #100DayProject next year in April again. After listening to Elise’s podcast, I’m ready to go on my own 100 Day Adventure right now before 2016 comes to an end.
The Invite: Would you like to join with me for the next 100 days (starting on August 15th) to complete a project? If so, let me know in the comments or message me using the contact page.
I’d love for you to join me. Let’s encourage each other on!