Kole McRae of Office Buddha, talks about getting rid of 15 blogs that he owned:
Four months ago, I had 15 blogs. I had blogs about net neutrality, writing tips, technology news, and more. They were all things I was passionate about and loved writing them but one day I deleted them all.
All but one.
I didn’t back them up. I didn’t think twice about it. I simply clicked Delete and never thought about them again. Each one had an audience. Some of them even brought in a little money. But none of that mattered.
That day I discovered a simple truth about myself—a truth that expands to absolutely everyone. The idea was simple, which is kind of the beauty of it.
The idea that Kole is talking about works on these basic premises:
- The less you spread yourself the better you work - you have less time for each additional task that you take up, so focus on one thing and do it well. Dedication to a single cause is often better than many.
- Do one thing at a time - work on only one thing at a time and focus all your energies on that single thing. Once it meets your definition of complete move on to trying other things if you must. But keep the number of projects running on any given time to the lowest number possible.
Of course, the idea isn't just limited to your blogs or your side projects. Most young startups and mid-sized companies make this mistake. Go on and take a look at how many open projects your organization has right now. Are you truly developing a Niche as an organization or jumping from one branch to another like a drunk monkey? More often than not, doing one thing and doing it really well will not kill you or your organization. The psychic weight of trying to do too many things at once and the desire to multitask both as an individual and an organization will.
How many products or projects do you have running in your organization? How many initiatives do you have running in your personal life? Maybe it's time to get rid of some of them and focus on the ones you really love working on. Deleting something, dropping something, stopping something or even putting something you started, on an indefinite hold is a really hard thing to do. It involves closing doors; something which we as human beings are not hardwired to do. But then, it's your only shot at being really good at something.
Go on. Pick a few stale projects in your work life or a few initiatives in your personal life and shut them down. You'll feel better and chances are you'll end up being much more happier and much more productive in the long run. I wish you good luck.