A Simple Way to Approach Big Projects

Martha and I have two daughters and we have been through two wonderful weddings. Each was a big project for us and for our family.

Most of us have big projects. How can we approach them so that we handle them effectively and keep them from stressing us out?

Here is my simple approach to a big project.

When we planned Anna’s wedding, we went to bed each night thinking about different areas we had to remember in order to make sure the wedding came together the way we wanted. Many of them were date specific, such as the wedding day itself.

Before long, we had too many projects and too many dates running through our heads. We were spending too much time trying to keep up with everything we had to do.

Here’s what we did.

We took a yellow legal pad and we worked from the back to the front. The last page of the legal pad had the date of the wedding on it.

We began writing a list of things that had to be done on the wedding day. Next, we turned to the preceding page and wrote the date of the day before the wedding. We wrote a list that had to be accomplished the day before the wedding.

We did this for every day leading up to the wedding.

That approach cleared our minds from all the things we had to remember.

Writing things down is one of the most helpful ways I know to ease your mind and to help you accomplish what you have to get done.

Corporations and those tasked with completing big projects follow this approach. (Of course, they follow a little more professional plan for doing so!)

What are the principles of completing a big project?

First, make sure you think through and develop a plan to complete the project.

Second, commit the plan to paper.

Third, break the project into small pieces.  That’s what we did when we had a page for each day leading up to the wedding. We actually broke the project into ninety pieces–the number of days before the wedding took place.

Fourth, look carefully at each small piece for the things that need to be done in that part of the project. We accomplished this part by writing areas to be completed on each day.

Finally, work the plan everyday until completion.

All of us have many big projects. Some are like weddings and others have to do with huge financial plans.

Whatever you do in whatever part of your life, do it with all your heart (Colossians 3:17).

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About Waylon

I am the senior pastor of First Baptist Church, Covington, Louisiana, a position that I have held since 1989.

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Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord. — Ephesians 6:4 (NIV)