JSTETSER
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Half-Finished Projects

Sunday, December 30, 2018


I have learned the importance of finishing the projects that I've started. There's no joy in these projects most of the time.
My first Ph D (Project half Done) was a bathrobe.
When I was twelve, one of my mom’s friends offered to help me learn to sew. It was a very thoughtful offer, but somehow, I never really connected with this woman. I didn’t know her well, and I didn’t feel comfortable with her. I went to her home several times and made the outer part of the bathrobe, but never made the lining. My mom was busy with five other little children at that point, and my project got pushed to the side.
I learned a lot from that half-finished project. I learned that sometimes kids need adults to carry a project for a little bit if the child is going to learn how to finish it. If the liner had been cut out, I think that I would have returned to sew it together and add the buttons.
It’s funny how I still remember that project. I really wanted a special bathrobe, but I needed some extra motivation to get “er done. I hope that I remember this lesson as I work with my grandkids. Big projects can look so impossible part-way through. I try to stick with my plan to finish what I start.

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • TOMATOCAFEGAL
    Don’t always want the lessons we learn along the way, but we do have to deal with them.
    336 days ago
  • HARRIETT14
    I use to sew a great deal for myself as well as the children. My mom was a great teacher in all things. As I grow older with a lot of responsibility I have not sewn or paint, another hobby, since November. I keep thinking that tomorrow I will do it. Tomorrow comes and goes and still I don't. I wish I had half your energy.
    336 days ago
  • JSTETSER
    I love reading through the comments!
    339 days ago
  • 1DAY-ATA-TIME
    Excluding half read books, I got a few half done mechanical projects. I repair small engines and other gadgets as a hobby. Most of the time I set it aside because I need parts. They'll eventually get done but there's no hurry.
    339 days ago
  • JSTETSER
    Thank you for your thoughtful comment on my blog today! I'll be a finisher! emoticon
    339 days ago
  • DOVESEYES
    Love the lessons we learn along the way :)
    339 days ago
  • ARTJAC
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    339 days ago
  • DESERTDREAMERS
    I once tried cross-stitching the 50 states. The canvas was huge, I seemed to run out of time, we moved & I never got the box out of the garage ... never finished it. I have managed to finish smaller ones.
    339 days ago
  • RKOTTEK
    emoticon emoticon
    340 days ago
  • GRAMMYEAC
    Sometimes, though we don't recognize it, we need that little boost from someone else to help us see our way to the finish line. Thanks for pointing this out...
    340 days ago
  • MORTICIAADDAMS
    Very keen insight. I think a lot of potential fans of different arts fall by the way side because they encounter problems and no one is there to help them.
    340 days ago
  • PATRICIA-CR
    emoticon
    340 days ago
  • MEADSBAY
    A year or two ago I read a blog somewhere by a young busy mom who said she felt constantly frustrated and torn by her busy life and feeling like she never got anything done.
    So she chose a mantra for herself and uses it as often as she can whenever she feels the impulse to flit from one task to another.
    She just whispers to herself one word.
    Finish.
    That’s it.
    It helps her get things done before moving on (whenever possible).
    And guess what?
    It works for me,too!
    This is more for everyday tasks, I guess, not for unfinished projects such as earned you your PhD. emoticon
    340 days ago
  • FRABBIT
    Good lesson
    340 days ago
  • GABY1948
    emoticon emoticon
    340 days ago
  • HEALTHYWRITER
    Mine is in Crochet! :)

    But "if there is no joy in these projects," then maybe the best thing to do is chalk it up to "lesson learned" and move on. I actually had to teach my daughter HOW to quit - she was so intense, so driven, that unlike most parents trying to instill stick-to-it-ivness into their kids, I had to teach mine when to walk away, for her sanity and everyone else's. It's an important thing, I think, to learn.

    Life's too short to doggedly stick to projects that do not bring us (or anyone else) joy. Is it IMPORTANT to finish the project (that is, will the end result bring you, or someone you care about, joy or satisfaction or success?), or is it just "dammit, I started this, and now I'm stuck with it till it's done"? The latter is just a miserable endeavor with no purpose to it. Find a new thing. (This is why crafters have bins of crap they'll never use, but it's okay - kids LOVE bins of crap crafters will never use. There are even a few stores that specialize in reselling it!)
    340 days ago
  • L1LL1AN_M
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    340 days ago
  • CHRISTINEBWD
    I am working on a project right now and I will get it done. :-)
    340 days ago
  • LIS193
    Big projects are overwhelming for kids. I remember wanting to knit a sweater and my mom suggested to knit one for the little boy next door first to see how I got on. A smaller project to get me going and that got me on the road to knit many, many sweaters later on.
    340 days ago
  • PHOENIX1949
    emoticon
    340 days ago
  • ROADTOFREEDOM
    Interesting comments on the value of seeing a project through and the role that other people can play in helping a goal be achieved.

    Cheers.
    340 days ago
  • POLSKARENIA
    I have some sewing projects started probably twenty plus years ago. This year, as we move permanently to France, they will, one by one be completed.

    340 days ago
  • MAJORK29
    I have so many projects that I have finished but so also so many that I have started but not finished. Last year I made a plan to finish 1 WIP (work in progress) before starting anything new.
    340 days ago
  • ORTATK
    Finishing is one of my problems. I made my self a promise several years ago to finish projects I started. It is still a work in progress but i am so much better, but at 70 I hope I would be:)

    Enjoy your upcoming new year.
    340 days ago
  • LIVINHEALTHY9
    I always try to finish things I start. I may get distracted for a bit, or delayed by other things, but it really bugs me if I don't complete something.


    340 days ago
  • SUNNYBEACHGIRL
    I agree that there are commitments you should keep once you start. The learning curve on some skill sets is steep and working through the frustration is the only way to get better. But I have tried exercise classes, joined book clubs or other activities that were new to me. After a short time realized that it wasn’t for me and dropped out. I learned something about myself that helped find the things I like.

    Repeatedly starting projects and not finishing them may be an issue. Stepping back and looking at the total picture maybe more important.


    340 days ago
  • JAZZEJR
    I loved to sew, but somehow many of my projects never quite got finished. I lost motivation if the project was for me.
    340 days ago
  • SRWYLIE
    My great aunt taught me to sew. I have always cherishes that time I spent with her.
    340 days ago
  • TCANNO
    emoticon emoticon
    340 days ago
  • CAKAROO
    emoticon
    340 days ago
  • 1CRAZYDOG
    Growing up neither of my parents would let me quit something I'd made a commitment to. It helped me learn 2 things: 1) think carefully about taking on a project -- will I have what it takes to see it through? If not, then maybe it's not the right project for me. 2) especially if the project involved others, I had the responsibility not to let them down.

    I think you're right for sure. Kids definitely need that little help from parents when the task gets overwhelming. That's I guess the 3rd lesson I learned. Never be afraid to get help when a project is becoming overwheming.

    HUGS
    340 days ago
  • NASFKAB
    I know my life is full of unfinished projects Just remember the time I was supposed to knit a couple of sweaters for a new baby but knit them left them unfinished & they were used as rags. That may have been good not wasted but think if I had given them to my cousin's new wife whose parents had passed away as had my uncle & aunt. She would have appreciated the gesture
    340 days ago
  • LINDA058
    Valuable
    340 days ago
  • CONTROUBLE
    I wasn't allowed to quit things partway through, either when I was growing up. I do think that helped me have a good understanding of responsibility.
    340 days ago
  • EMGERBER
    emoticon
    340 days ago
  • IOEINC
    My mom would never let us quit anything, sports, lessons, nothing!! We were only allowed to quit something once it was done. I remember playing softball in junior high school and hated it and was going to quit midseason but my mom told me that I could quit after the season was over but not before. I remember being so mad at her at the time but eventually I realized it was a valuable lesson. I had made a commitment and had to see it through until the commitment was over!! But that still never changed my mind about softball or even watching baseball with my husband!! Still don't like the game!! emoticon
    340 days ago
  • GODS-PRINCESS
    My mom would never finish a project so I try my best to finish what I start.
    340 days ago
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