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The Lifelong Project

The Lifelong Project

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The Lifelong Project

205 página
3 horas
Lançado em:
Nov 26, 2012


What could happen if you were the project manager of your life? Around the world people are desperately searching for answers, direction, motivation, and purpose. Lives are in high demand but living is in low supply. The business of life needs new management and The Lifelong Project offers the solution. You will determine your wants and needs, create goals, seize your ambitions, and maximize your potential. Your Lifelong Project begins today. As the project manager of your life you have the authority to plan, control, and get things done. You'll achieve more than you ever thought possible. You'll find answers to squelch fears, dismiss doubts, and banish anxiety. Your goals will move from flimsy wishes to life-changing accomplishments. This isn't goal setting - this is goal achieving!

Lançado em:
Nov 26, 2012

Sobre o autor

JOSEPH PHILLIPS, PMP is a project management consultant, instructor, and owner of Project Seminars, Inc. and Instructing.com. He is the author of several project management books, including PMP: Project Management Professional Study Guide and IT Project Management: On Track from Start to Finish.

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  • Think about how you want to feel one year from now. You probably want to feel happiness, joy, value, appreciation, and accomplishment. Guess what? You can have those feelings - and probably long before 365 days pass you by.

  • You need to create a purpose, a mission, for the project to adhere to; for your Lifelong Project you probably already have some ideas for the requirements to include in your undertaking.

Amostra do Livro

The Lifelong Project - Joseph Phillips

The Lifelong Project

By Joseph Phillips

Copyright 2012 by Joseph Phillips

Smashwords Edition

Smashwords License Statement

This ebook is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This ebook may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each reader. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then please return to Smashwords.com and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.

Chapter One

Your Lifelong Project

What would happen if you treated the next year of your life like a project? Or better yet, what could happen if you treated the next year of your life like a project? If you have goals and ambitions to change your life, passions you want to rekindle, and a belief that you can change the world then the Lifelong Project is for you. This isn’t a book about setting goals – it’s a book about achieving goals. This is your Lifelong Project.

Let’s getting something straight right from the start, project management is about getting things done. It’s challenging, methodical work to take an idea from the ether and create it into being – but that’s what project management does. It takes people, organizations, and communities from the present state to a desired future state. It is creative work but it follows reason, a plan, and a mission.

The reason why so many companies rely on project management is because project management works; it’s a proven method to create, to change, and to grow. Project management helped create the pyramids, put a man on the moon, and build skyscrapers. And now you can leverage these project management techniques to accomplish your goals. You can overcome. You can achieve. You can take charge. Project management is all about business – including the business of life.

You’re probably reading this with some idea of what you’d like to change, accomplish, or achieve in your life. You might have visions of a new career, weight loss, accomplishing a physical goal, or some idea of what success means to you. You probably have some pictures in your mind about what you’d like to achieve, but you need a method of how you can move from right here to that desired future of success, accomplishment, and a more meaningful life.

Positive thoughts, wishes, and journals full of dreams just won’t get it done. I know – I’ve done those methods too. What works, what I have personally proven to work, is project management. This is a logical approach that demands dedication and commitment to identified activities to achieve your goals. You’ll need to invest your time, your energy, and yourself to make your goals a reality.

Many people have a safe, distant vision of what their life could be like; it’s sad, because they often think these are just things that are for other people. They imagine happiness, a fulfilling job, love, fitness, and rewarding experiences – all for other, smarter, better people. What they’re missing is that they too can have these things in their life, but it won’t happen on accident.

You know that you are alive, but you might question if you’re really living. Why shouldn’t you have what you want in reality too? Why shouldn’t your life be full of joy and bliss? Get this simple truth right now: this moment is your life. Your life is now. Every moment you waste through daydreaming, ignoring your goals, putting others down, and giving your time to distractions are moments you’ll never recover. Your life is made up of moments that you’ll never see again. Money is a two-way street, but time only goes one way.

What you do with your time speaks depths about you. Has anyone ever asked what you do? They want to know about your career and how you sell your time. Obviously work is a big part of your life, but it’s not your whole life. And projects? Doesn’t it seem that everyone is on a project of some sort?

While this book uses the premise of project management to help you reach your goals and dreams, keep one thing in mind from this point forward: it’s really all about you. I’ve learned in my life that the tools of project management can be leveraged in the business world, but also in the more exciting, personal world.

This book is about you creating, doing, and experiencing all the good that your life has for you. This is a book about how the life you know today can blossom into a life with even more love, more joy, and more satisfaction than you’ve ever experienced before. This book is about you getting things done.

Creating a Lifelong Project

How many projects are you working on right now? If you’re like most people, you have several projects in motion all at once: work projects, personal projects, projects around the house. And I bet you’re helping your kids, family, and neighbors with their projects too. For most of us it’s a constant barrage of things to do, all packaged and labeled as projects.

Technically speaking, a project is a short-term venture to create something. It’s an endeavor that has a definite beginning and a definite ending. Chances are, all of your projects have a clear starting point and you’ve a clear idea of how the end result of your project, also known as the project deliverables, are supposed to turn out. When a professional organization creates a project, they usually start with a vision of what they want to create. Organizations first identify the reason why a project needs to exist and then identify what the outcome of the project should be, which allows them to measure their success.

If you’ve ever managed a project you’re probably thankful that projects don’t last forever - though you may have worked on some that feel that way! Project management is the planning, execution, and control of the events between the start of the project and the project’s closure.

Life is like a project. You had a birthday that was your beginning point and then, somewhere out there, is your ending point. You have a good idea how life is going to end up. Your life is all of the business between your birth and your appointment with death. But isn’t life, your existence, more than the space between birth and death? Isn’t life full of love, excitement, wonder, creativity, friends, family, and all the good things? You know that life has its pain, misery, and sadness too; it’s not all ice cream cones, chirping birds, and walks on sandy beaches. Life is rich with experiences, lessons to be learned, and opportunities to savor.

What happens between birth and death is largely up to you. All of us, regardless of our financial status, our race, our geographical locale on earth, our religion, our health, our mental outlook, and our different human characteristics have at least this one thing in common: no one gets out alive. That’s the only thing in life that is fair; for everything else you just have to deal with it, do the best you can, and take charge of your actions and reactions.

Here’s some good news: you get to decide much of what happens between now and then. You can make decisions and choices that will affect the rest of your life starting right now. You can decide to take control of your life. You can decide that you’ve had enough with the somedays and begin to create a strategy to reach specific goals on specific calendar days. You can identify what it is you want and then you can create a plan and to get what you want into and out of your life.

Life is more than just sleeping, working, eating, and projects, projects, projects. I meet so many people whose lives are long stretches of quiet, assumed misery, dotted with occasional joy, occasional passions, and occasional escapes from a job they do not enjoy. Are you living for the weekend, the vacation, or that mystical someday that just doesn’t seem to come?

Are you living for some foggy idea of what your life could be? Are you that person wondering what your work has to do with why you went to school? Maybe you’re someone who likes some of their work life, some of their personal life, but mostly it’s just another day, another dollar. Maybe you spend more than enough hours at work to escape the boredom, misery, and disappointment of a life you’ve lost.

Do you start each January with a laundry list of resolutions only to see them fade by March? Knowing what to do is one thing and doing it is quite another. In life and situations there are but two choices: do something or endure the misery.

You can create a life that’s worth living. Yes, you can achieve goals that mean something personal to you, for your family, for your world. You can define and achieve success, peace, and joy. You can find, create, and do work that benefits you mentally, financially, and personally. You can find happiness on a consistent basis - not just intermittently. You can do whatever it is you want to do, but there is a catch. The catch is that you have to know what it is that you want – and then take action to achieve it. Project management can help.

My Lifelong Project Story

Projects have been my life for a long, long time. I’ve managed mammoth projects and I’ve managed tiny projects. For years I’ve taught others how to manage their work – how to start, plan, execute, monitor, and close projects. I’ve taught management in universities, in corporate America, and for organizations around the world. I’ve written a few stuffy books on project management and I’ve showed thousands of people how they too can lead their projects from start to completion – on time and on budget. Project management has been good to me.

Yes, I love to successfully bring projects to closure. I love to deliver on my promises. I love to teach others about project management and show them that they can do what I’ve done. But I knew, deep down, that I wasn’t in love with project management. I loved the paychecks. I loved seeing my books in bookstores. I loved the applause, the kudos, and the recognition.

But I wasn’t happy. I saw my life as a sham and I knew that any day, any moment, someone was going to find me out and my business and career would come crashing down around me. So I decided to enjoy as much of everything as I could – certainly that would make me happy! I spent more than I was making. Every meal was at the latest, chic, overpriced restaurant. I drank too much, smoked too many cigars, gambled my earnings, experimented with drugs, and surrounded myself with the wrong sorts of people. My life was one big party. It was fun, but it wasn’t meaningful.

As you can probably guess, I was not a happy person. I had incurred what I thought was an insurmountable debt. I owed credit cards, mortgages, car payments, and other bills. Stress ravaged me. My hair fell out. My teeth ached. My once lean body ballooned. I couldn’t sleep – yet all I did was lie in bed and feel sorry for myself. My energy was pepped by colas, cakes, coffee, whiskey, and a new cycle of spending, gambling, and partying. I kept up my smile, my cheery facade, and continued, somehow, to teach, write, and consult on project management. Somehow I managed to keep my clients, my students, my editors, and everyone else happy – everyone except for me.

And then Death nearly found me.

In October, several years ago, I was on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. I was desolate, angry, and miserable. I was but two steps and a few thousand feet above the Colorado River and I was thinking about jumping into the abyss. I was convinced that nothing I did really mattered. That person on the edge of the Grand Canyon was not the vision I once had of myself. I saw myself as a great writer with a happy family, who was lean, buff, and forever young. Instead I was fat, divorced, miserable, and at one of the lowest points of my life. I thought that my life could only get better, or worse, if I just stepped off the edge of a cliff.

I was sick of my life. Sick of searching for something that would make me happy. I was tired of processes, action items, checklists, and the latest project management theories. I was tired of it all and just wanted to escape. Did I really want to jump? No – or else I would have.

At that moment, on the edge of a cliff, I needed something, anything, to back away and get my life moving in a new direction. At that moment I believed that all I had was project management and who really cares about project management? But, I asked: What if I treat the next year of my life as a project? What if I could identify what I wanted in my life, the types of people I wanted as friends, the attributes that I wanted to possess, and the characteristics of the type of man I knew I could become? If I can manage a project, why not use the same methods to reach my goals, to change my life, and to learn something new? It was a challenge to press on, an opportunity to learn and to grow, and a commitment to try just one more time.

In the years since that day I shed sixty-five pounds, grew my business, created new friendships, and made my life goals a reality. I am happier, healthier, more peaceful, and more focused than ever before. I am not a psychologist, a Zen guru, or some New Age zealot. I am a man that has learned and applied some universal truths to get what I want into and out of my life. If I can do it, you can too. Let me show you how.

While I believe you can apply the principles of project management to your entire life let’s get simple and do what I did: take up the challenge for a one-year project. Don’t worry about starting this project on January 1. I started my project on Halloween. You can start today, right here, right now.

Creating a Project Vision

Before you launch your Lifelong Project you need to know why your project should exist to begin with. You need to create a purpose, a mission, for the project to adhere to; for your Lifelong Project you probably already have some ideas for the requirements to include in your undertaking. That’s a great start, but let’s explore your Lifelong Project vision even more.

What were you doing a year ago today? When I offer that challenge up in my seminars, people chuckle and then, after some thinking, show disbelief that they can’t recall anything about what happened a year ago today. Unless it was a major event in their life, chances are it was just another day.

Forget about that year-old date for a moment and think about your life. Was your life that much different a year ago? What’s changed in your life from then to now? Some things have probably changed, but in the overall picture I’d guess that things are pretty much the same: same type of work, same type of stress, same disappointments, same old someday wishes, and same old socks in the dresser. Ho-hum.

If you don’t change you’ll have the same life again this year. Mentally fast-forward a year from today. What do you want your life to be like in one year? Forget about work, possessions, and the vacations. Think about how you want to feel one year from now. You probably want to feel happiness, joy, value, appreciation, and accomplishment. Guess what? You can have those feelings - and probably long before 365

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