Garry has 18 personal development plans. He got the idea from the personal effectiveness workshop he attended last month. Upon considering the six areas of his life, he created three projects for each.

I appreciate people like him. He invests in his personal development and takes professional growth seriously.

But Garry is still trying to figure out where to start. He has many responsibilities at work. He needs to figure out where to find the time to work on his effectiveness project.

He asked me what I thought about his projects.

I told him that it was too many. He can start some of these projects, but he’ll likely need more time to finish one.

He was hesitant. He did not want to “sacrifice” self-improvement in other areas.

I was like Garry. I was an over-motivated underachiever. Not only that I overestimated my ability, but I also failed to understand that not all things are equal. Some activities are more impactful than others.

You may have three personal development plans in a year. That is more manageable than having 18 projects which you cannot fit into your calendar.

But if you can choose the one thing that is most important and impactful, you are more likely to succeed.

Focus on that one thing. Start it at once, and keep at it until you build momentum. Do your one thing will all your passion, talents, and skills.

You don’t need 18 plans. You don’t need 10, 8, or 5.

You can outline three personal development plans. That’s okay. But work on that most important project.

Finish first thing first. The next big thing will become evident to you when you do.

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