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Discussion Starter #1
So, today is 9/14...Halloween is just around the corner. I mean, just AROUND the corner.

I have a cemetary fence finished that I started last year - except I have to get something to support it in the yard. I have five tombstones that need to be painted and maybe another 4-5 to even start. A couple of "creatures", using pvc pipe and some hands on order from Terror Syndicate, that are sort of half way done. Need to make some glowing embers for a "cauldron" I plan to put next to the creatures. I have a few artificial pumpkins that I carved from previous years but working on paper mache ones right now. Also making paper mache heads for the creatures.

All of that said.....

I have a HUGE issue with staying focused on one thing and finishing it. I admitted it to my wife - maybe that's the first step of recovery??

I was wondering if anyone else out there has the same issue? My wife keeps telling me to write down my list (similar to what I did above) and just try and tackle one thing at a time. Part of it for me is analysis paralysis. I think too hard about how to do something or how it is going to look. Also, I think some of the issue is that I don't really have a vision or picture in my head of how I want my front yard to even look like.

Just curious how anyone else deals with the issue - if you even have it...er, I mean if you've heard of a friend of a friend that has the same issue ;)
 

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I know how you feel...it's like being shackled to a madman! :D
 

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Never labeled it- but I am very scattered when it comes to any large project.. I completely forget elements of a plan or simply get distracted or overwhelmed into paralysis... not just with Halloween- but with life in general. It really DOES help when I write things down and set a schedule. The best method I've found is "scheduling backwards." That is listing all the elements of a job- and then working out the process backwards from completion to start. The hardest part? Not procrastinating and trying to constantly reshuffle the schedule.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
My wife said she was surprised that I was able to stick with and finish a two year project at work that I was the sole person working on it - other than an outside consulting firm and a trainer from the vendor. Implemented a cost accounting system. I have to admit I was bored by the end of year 1 on the project. BUT, since it was complete it or look for another line of work, I didn't have a choice. ;)

I think I do get overwhelmed and sometimes even bored; so I hop around from one thing to another and never finish the first thing.

Creating a list and even a schedule might be a good way to combat this issue. Although some of it too is if you need a part to finish it and you just can't seem to find what you're looking for, it throws off the whole schedule.

Anyway....I was curious if I was the only one out there with this issue! @ Wife - I wish my wife could pull it together for me, but she just walks out into the garage and looks at what I'm working on at the moment and says "good job...keep at it!" Baahaaaaaaaaaa!!!!
 

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I really know how you feel, I'm really bad. I have projects that have gone on for years. The list idea is a good one, but I can't even stick to that. If I'm tired I'm even worse. If it is something interesting or a feeling of accomplishment I can usually stick with it longer.
 

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Also, I think some of the issue is that I don't really have a vision or picture in my head of how I want my front yard to even look like.
This is a huge hindrance IMO....If you don't have any idea of the big picture then how do you know what the priorities are to be worked on or left out til next year?.....I hate to say it but your wife is right....Make a list....I doubt your going to make 5 more tombstones (or paper machie more pumpkins) in time but you can paint the 5 tombstones you have and figure out how to support the surrounding fence so you have a cemetery....Maybe concentrate on ONE creature if you have any time left.....The biggest word of advice I can give from experience is don't stress yourself out too bad trying to get it all done or it won't be enjoyable and that's the biggest tragedy of all......ZR
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Saw your "not jacked" post ZR and I think that some of what you're experiencing may be the reason for my inability to finish stuff. I'm just getting started whereas you've been at it for a long time. But, I still have the feeling of being overwhelmed and feeling like I'm spending a lot of time working on this stuff when I could be doing something more "productive". Being my first year and starting out with zilch, it has also felt like a money pit at times trying to accumulate things like a fog machine, etc. etc. etc. The priorities really were to create a graveyard to start but then my teen daughter wanted to invite friends to a halloween party; so not only did it start to feel like I needed to do outside stuff, but inside stuff too. Sooo.....long story short, with the time crunch it started to feel like I'm coming home to a 2nd job in the evenings. I also missed this whole last week because I was at a work conference - pretty sad when you're thinking that you could be home painting something or paper macheing something. ;)

Thanks for the words of advice. I agree - if it isn't fun, you shouldn't stress yourself out over it. And, a person really doesn't need to add any additional stress to their lives. We have enough as it is. This whole "hobby" should be more about letting yourself do something you enjoy that decreases the stress and gives you some sense of accomplishment.

Enough of my ramblings - appreciate the feedback and the honesty!!

This is a huge hindrance IMO....If you don't have any idea of the big picture then how do you know what the priorities are to be worked on or left out til next year?.....I hate to say it but your wife is right....Make a list....I doubt your going to make 5 more tombstones (or paper machie more pumpkins) in time but you can paint the 5 tombstones you have and figure out how to support the surrounding fence so you have a cemetery....Maybe concentrate on ONE creature if you have any time left.....The biggest word of advice I can give from experience is don't stress yourself out too bad trying to get it all done or it won't be enjoyable and that's the biggest tragedy of all......ZR
 

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Thanks for sharing... just want to say that identifying "it" is half the battle and I agree on making the list - that too can be fun! You will feel great once you tackle some of those items - through to completion... and I'm sure the overall theme will come together nicely. :)
 

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I'm right there with you. I think the list thing is huge. Knowing what you're going to do.And if it's a big project, figuring out the very next thing you need to do and not worrying too much beyond that.

Weird analogy. A while back my wife told me about an episode of Hoarders she watched and the guy just was so overwhelmed by all the stuff in his house he couldn't even begin to get started, because all he could think about was this huge task that was ahead of him - he just couldn't imagine ever getting it done. The therapist (or whatever he was) suggested that he get big bed sheets and just lay them overtop of everything in the house so it was completely covered. Once that was done, he said 'just peel back one small corner of the sheet, and focus on dealing with that little bit of stuff'. I always kinda try to do that sort of metaphorically now. Figure out how I can mentally hide everything else away so I'm just focused on the one thing that is my next job.

"Try" being the operative word here.
 

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NO KIDDING....lmao......i think halloween is the hardest holiday for me too, i change up what i do every year to outdo the last year....and can just spin and spin and spin............heres what i do........i get a notebook, i lay out either my yard or haunt by areas, only focus on one thing, and draw it out, list what goes there and then move to the next thing, dont think about anything else ( three tombstone, one skellie, three purple string lights, one can green light, two cords etc etc etc)......that way you organize yourself in putting it out and setting it up fast...you will tweak it as you get it done........we had a huge maze, seven rooms seven hallways, and the yard and inside my house..and it was always "in my head", so anyone trying to help me was crippled cause i knew what my vision was they didnt.......i have many moments of just shut down and going to sit down i cant deal with this this year...lol...............try drawing and listing in a pad, sketch alittle scene you want to do and get all your stuff to that area to set up and just do it, then go to the next one...........i tend to get one thing i like i want in a scene and then let my thinking build from that piece and i dont push it, the ideas will come and develop over a few days or some time..go look at others set ups it will stimulate what you think of..........an adult beverage helps sometimes too...hahaha

if you are making things again go by your scene you are doing in priorities...you may not have time to complete everything, so finish whats the most important to your set up....if you can multitask artwork or building then do that with a few things you can control, like paint this, while the paint dries go do something else to utilize your time well but dont over do it thats when you get lost.........sometimes you just have to force yourself to finish it, i found once i did that i got out of that habit of getting bored with something taking too long to do and starting something else........part of the taking too long was not focusing on it and finishing it....haunts are built up from adding to them from year to year..

oh and pack your stuff up by that set up so next year its ready to just put out with tweaking...that will save your behind next year, let me tell you.. take some pictures to put in your notebook to refer back to cause you will forget what you did and keep it, i have a notebook that goes back 13 years now..i dont remember a fraction of what i did back then..lol

So, today is 9/14...Halloween is just around the corner. I mean, just AROUND the corner.

I have a cemetary fence finished that I started last year - except I have to get something to support it in the yard. I have five tombstones that need to be painted and maybe another 4-5 to even start. A couple of "creatures", using pvc pipe and some hands on order from Terror Syndicate, that are sort of half way done. Need to make some glowing embers for a "cauldron" I plan to put next to the creatures. I have a few artificial pumpkins that I carved from previous years but working on paper mache ones right now. Also making paper mache heads for the creatures.

All of that said.....

I have a HUGE issue with staying focused on one thing and finishing it. I admitted it to my wife - maybe that's the first step of recovery??

I was wondering if anyone else out there has the same issue? My wife keeps telling me to write down my list (similar to what I did above) and just try and tackle one thing at a time. Part of it for me is analysis paralysis. I think too hard about how to do something or how it is going to look. Also, I think some of the issue is that I don't really have a vision or picture in my head of how I want my front yard to even look like.

Just curious how anyone else deals with the issue - if you even have it...er, I mean if you've heard of a friend of a friend that has the same issue ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I appreciated the feedback. I just tend to procrastinate and then when the deadline is all of a sudden in front of me, I get overwhelmed and shut down - unable to make a decision on what to work on. I'm going to make my list and start by giving each item a value of importance. Tombstones first.....(can't have a gy without tombstones, right?) Couple of small details on fence....etc. etc. Just prioritize what I want to have out there this year.

Anyway....enjoyed everyone's responses. Just have to try and remember it's supposed to be something that is fun and hopefully kind of relaxing and to give myself some self satisfaction if anyone else enjoys it. That's why I used to carve artificial pumpkins - I got satisfaction watching others enjoy them.

I saw a tapatalk forum thread this week where someone started the thread about how their display had been vandalized. That's another issue about the whole thing for me - so much work and I just don't want to risk putting it out until the day of. And, I work in the accounting field so the last day of the month is out of the question as far as taking the day off. So, that leaves me getting home around 5pm that evening and rushing to put stuff out. Ugh. I just need to quit thinking about it.
 

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I don't think the problem is any sort of attention deficit at all. Simply three things mesh together to cause this problem: vision, craftsmanship, and management.

1. Vision causes problems because each of us has a grand vision for a haunt, a vision the encompasses far more than just one or two things. There is just so much to do and only so much time to do it.
2. Craftsmanship is a problem because we know there will be lulls in the work. And we want efficiency instead of lulls. After all, nobody wants to watch paint dry. So we attempt to work on multiple projects at the same time in the effort to fulfill our vision as efficiently as possible.

Unfortunately, we then fall flat on our faces with poor management skills and prioritization, resulting in the ADD simulating chaos that is the build process for most of us. Often working on multiple projects turns into starting a new project at each lull rather than going back to works in progress. So much for efficiency!

I still have a laser vortex to finish making that I started two Halloweens ago. It is an awesome design, set up to operate on 3v battery feed or 5v phone charger wall wart (well, more of a wall ice cube, really) and it has three lasers built in (red, green and violet) - I can run all three at the same time for a truly funky vortex but the real reason is heat management, cycling through the lasers so they all get cooling time. Nice and compact, could fit in a shoe box for kids shoes. It won't be used with my spider tunnel, so it is at the bottom of the priority list. The fundraiser haunted trail I was supposed to do last year got cancelled, so the vortex went straight to the bottom of the list while I focused on my yard haunt. Funnily enough, I can't say whether this is bad management or not. But hey, at least I figured out how to get the laser module out of the aluminum tube of a laser penlight! lol
 

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:DI have AD-OLZ.. Attention Deficit "Oh Look Zombie" ! worked my way through school and the Navy and my every day life with ADD since the 70's (I was an early diagnosis; even in a few studies)

I was told the whole time that I was over creative and imaginative and needed to control those parts of my personality. Forget that! I turn it loose and have fun. I don't always get done every thing I want, but Me and mine always have fun! ADD, ADHD be da%med, I have fun with my friends.

Now I do have a bit if a lisp and stammer do to a physical defect that is really fun talking to the ToT's.....:D
 

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I've been meaning to answer this thread, but I keep getting distracted........

Yes, I can never keep my mind on one project. I'm usually working on two or three projects at a time.
It's really nice when they all get completed around the same time.
(I can be a procrastinator, too.)
 

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Tee-hee! This thread is making me laugh! I can recognize my husband in a lot of the comments! He is easily distractable, but with the best of intentions. It does cause some frustration between us, but we function pretty well together as a team, since I'm pretty organized & I try to pull him back on task.

Lots of good advice already! I agree that drawing out your space is sooooo key! I'm not very talented at drawing, but even I can make a rectangle for the house, some circles for trees/bushes, and some horseshoe-shaped & cross-shaped tombstones. I draw in the fencing areas too, and write in where certain props should be. This makes it easy for both DH & I to go back to and SEE our goal.

Also, priorities are important, not only in the "what is a MUST HAVE?" for your haunt, but also in a "what am I going to be really disappointed in if I don't have it done?" kind of way. Think about what you most want to show off, and certainly prioritize those, but also think about what is important to YOU, even if it's a tiny detail that others may not notice, but that you really love.

Since you have such limited time on the day of Halloween, ANYTHING that you can do to make your set-up easier should be a priority, I think. Whether that be asking friends/family/neighbors to help, whether it be sorting your stuff into boxes by "area" so that you don't have to carry stuff all over your yard, get all your electrical stuff together in a bin, ordering pizza so no one has to worry about dinner, etc, etc. Think about what will make your set-up easier and try to go that route! Could you even ask your boss if you could come in an hour or two early so that you could leave early? That would be a huge help if you could do it!
 

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Thank The Grimm Reaper I Am Not The Only One!

I have been diagnosed with ADHD since I was in 1st Grade. And like what dariusobells had said

I was told the whole time that I was over creative and imaginative and needed to control those parts of my personality.
And thats true! The doctors I went to had said I will not be able to fully comprehend a lot in school... But mine was severe to the point that I do have to take medication (Concerta XR :cool: ) . Otherwise, I would laugh at someone saying even the slightest mention of pudding :p . It was tough going through middle school and high school, but i managed and graduated with 3.75 (could have done better though). Gained my Associates, and 5 months away from completing my Bachelors. All the while becoming a Database Administrator for the US Navy Weapons Warfare center.

But anyways, I do very much believe that having this is not as bad as doctors put it.

I have so many abilities, I play many instruments (Alto, Tenor Sax, Clarinet, Trumpet, drums), Produce computerized music, Build my own funiture (so i guess a wood worker.... giggity ;) ) Can create a home haunt and have many people enjoy it.

What I am saying is, even though I do not finish a lot of my prop builds and stuff. I would never change my brain for one without ADHD!!!

Be Proud of what you--- OMG This paper clip though.
 
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I've been meaning to answer this thread, but I keep getting distracted........

Yes, I can never keep my mind on one project. I'm usually working on two or three projects at a time.
It's really nice when they all get completed around the same time.
(I can be a procrastinator, too.)
I just had to have a 'Come to Jesus meeting' with myself today! I am forbidden (by me!) to start any more projects until i finish the ones I've already started.

It sucks when tin foil can capture your attention for hours at a time!
 
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