In the last Splintering Your Brand post, I discussed How Too Little of You Hurts Your Message. This time I want to tell you my experience being splintered by overcommitment.
Last February, I put together an art show to help Bangkok’s urban refugees. When I refer back to this period of my life, I think of fighting a war on three fronts. When I took on this project I was full time teaching, trying to pull off full time charity work, and attempting to be social enough to have people at the art show. I lost this war on all three fronts. While teaching for me went generally well, grading and writing piled up at a rate I could never recover from. The bigger the plans for the art show became, the more nights I spent in meetings or at the venue planning. And my social life was the biggest disaster. I alienated friends and new people trying to push an event on them without spending any quality time with them. Big mistake. I suffered personally and so did my cause. This is why I’m so passionate about asking you to pause and think about all you’re doing and how you’re committing yourself to your project.
Being splintered because of overcommitment had two detrimental consequences: 1)Overcommitment makes it difficult for people to help you and 2)Overcommitment is exhausting and leads to burn out. These consequences make the goals you’ve set harder to reach.
The show went well and we raised a significant amount of money for the cause. However, I did not reach the fund raising goal I originally set and I nearly killed myself trying to be superman. Afterward, I needed some serious time away from my projects. In hindsight, this was quite an unhealthy way to lead a project.
In the upcoming posts I will give some guidelines to prevent splintering in your endeavors running projects and using the web to spread your message. Thanks for reading and I hope you’re committing yourself to doing work you love in a realistic, sustainable way.