One complication that comes from using powerful tools is that we can spend more time tinkering with the machine than making widgets. Kourosh Dini wrote an excellent post about the “Considered Task”. Specifically, he will insert the word “Consider” in front of a task to give himself that ability to weigh a task or project before committing to it. It makes a lot of sense and I’m going to start using it. Read the entire post for a more detailed explanation. (I also have to admit I just enjoy Kourosh’s deliberate, paced, writing voice.)
I use a similar (but not as clever) trick for planning projects. Once I’ve committed to a project, I need to plan the necessary steps so I can get to that cranking widgets mindset that releases all of my happy chemicals. The trouble is that quite often the moment I commit to something is not the best moment to do that planning. So at that point, I’ll make a task “Plan Death Ray project”. If the planning is going to take a lot of time, I may even schedule time for planning the project. Planning to plan sounds pedantic and I’ll admit it is a a bit of a cheat but I’ve found it does give me the necessary motivation to actually plan the project and gives the project itself a much better chance of actually proceeding.