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Owner issues.....anybody else get 'stuck' ? (Not A/R issues)

Yes. And also being able to complete the task and 'bask' in that success a bit. Feeling of accomplishment goes a long way toward building motivation momentum. I'm always kinda on the fence with days off and holidays. They are momentum and motivation wreckers.

Knocking out the immediate smaller tasks helps me to build endurance for the ones that take longer.

The absolute worst ones for me are those short cycle, 2nd op machining tasks with a high parts count. A box of 4000 widgets, all needing a small step, pocket or slot milled; I cannot stand those.
I usually break it down into pieces per day. The logic looks something like; "okay these are due in 55 days. If I do 100 a day, that's only 3 hours per day and I'll be done in 40."

This way, tasks that feel like they will never be finished can still bring gratification by meeting a daily goal. If I don't do it that way, I will always find something more "important" to do with my time.
It also gives me something specific to feel guilty about when I get distracted and don't stick to it.

Knowing what I should be doing, but not doing it, that is a self discipline problem.
Being buried in tasks and stuck in a mental paralysis is an organizational problem. I have trouble with both of them at various times.

I am not a fan of holidays, they feel ritualistic and superficial to me. My wife loves it though, so I go along and do the dance like everyone else.

Updating the list before leaving the shop definitely makes things easier. If I actually do it and have everything organized - I can rest my mind knowing that when I return; the only task in front of me will be looking at the white board.

Organization, discipline and time management are my largest obstacles to growth in every area of my life. I am always looking to learn and try new things to improve in these areas.
 
Knocking out the immediate smaller tasks helps me to build endurance for the ones that take longer.

The absolute worst ones for me are those short cycle, 2nd op machining tasks with a high parts count. A box of 4000 widgets, all needing a small step, pocket or slot milled; I cannot stand those.
I usually break it down into pieces per day. The logic looks something like; "okay these are due in 55 days. If I do 100 a day, that's only 3 hours per day and I'll be done in 40."

This way, tasks that feel like they will never be finished can still bring gratification by meeting a daily goal. If I don't do it that way, I will always find something more "important" to do with my time.
It also gives me something specific to feel guilty about when I get distracted and don't stick to it.

Knowing what I should be doing, but not doing it, that is a self discipline problem.
Being buried in tasks and stuck in a mental paralysis is an organizational problem. I have trouble with both of them at various times.

I am not a fan of holidays, they feel ritualistic and superficial to me. My wife loves it though, so I go along and do the dance like everyone else.

Updating the list before leaving the shop definitely makes things easier. If I actually do it and have everything organized - I can rest my mind knowing that when I return; the only task in front of me will be looking at the white board.

Organization, discipline and time management are my largest obstacles to growth in every area of my life. I am always looking to learn and try new things to improve in these areas.
setting short to medium length goals along the path of a longer goal is a good practice. I do the same with large orders that you do and it helps me.
 
Since I have been fighting cancer I have been having trouble focusing and getting things done. The surgery is done going on 4 weeks now and I am getting around better but I am buried and have no motivation whatsoever. Now what????
You have been through a lot. Sometimes, the best thing you can do is to give yourself the grace to recognize that you need time to recover. Recognize that your lack of motivation may be your body telling you to slow down and take a break for a while.
 
Small fast run vs longer run.
I like the 10-15 second cycles. You get into a rhythm, the day goes fast and you have a lot of parts in the end.
No time to think about other things or any other problems. No distractions.
My cycles run from under 6 seconds to 30+ minutes.
The long ones just do not work for me. Here I want 4 or even 10 machines up and going. (give me work to do)
Otherwise I drift off and the day so drags out. Sitting on a long run is like watching the corn grow to me.
Idle hands and all that.

So here is maybe the real weird thing. It seems my employees also like to be kept busy so the day goes fast.
They will complain about high production rates and will cry but like the faster day.
I am sure that my shop is not yours or anyone elses. Everything is different.
 
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I get “paralyzed” often. My list of “to do’s” only gets longer it seems, no matter how many things I cross off.

I made a big move 6 hours away from where I lived my whole life and where the family business was 2 years ago.

I moved my family, my shop, and the cnc machines as well. Doing that required an addition on the shop at the new place. I did it all myself, concrete, framing, drywall etc… plus it’s cold here all winter so I had to get things done as the seasons allowed.

We also are now on 40 acres with goats and chickens, and all kinds of outside yard work.

Still unpacking shop stuff, finding homes for everything all while trying to also get work done. Been a slow frustrating process.

I was trying to get things “perfect” in the shop, organize and put away the first time. What’s been helping is I have given up on that. I have come to terms I need things put away “good enough for now” if that means the shelving I built or racks I setup end up being moved 3 times over the coming years it is what it is.

My old shop space, grew slowly with time and things as they came got their homes the same way.

I just need to take steps and get things done and it’s not always the highest priority stuff, sometimes it’s just something that I can get done in a relatively short period of time. That gets the ball rolling for the next step.

It’s been 2 years since I moved and I feel like I have been a slug and not getting things done. But when I actually sit back and make a list of everything I have gotten done, that list is many miles long. Makes me feel better and gets me up and going again.
 
You have been through a lot. Sometimes, the best thing you can do is to give yourself the grace to recognize that you need time to recover. Recognize that your lack of motivation may be your body telling you to slow down and take a break for a while.
All well and good, but when I am not working no money comes in. They never forget to send the bills though.
 
1 man shop here I can relate.
Sometimes I just spin in my chair and close my eyes...
Sometimes I draw circles. Silly, but here's short backstory...

Working next to colleague/mentor, I was overloaded with projects, brain fried beyond repair.
I grabbed a sticky note and for some reason just started drawing circles. Wise colleague said (he knew what state I was in) "isn't that nice. Sometimes I wish we could just draw circles". It stuck after that.

It's kinda like writers block. They say to just start scribbling and eventually the mind will catch up and writing will occur.
I even stick the circle filled sticky note on the wall. Just as a reminder there is a way to calm the storm.
 
Sometimes I draw circles. Silly, but here's short backstory...

Working next to colleague/mentor, I was overloaded with projects, brain fried beyond repair.
I grabbed a sticky note and for some reason just started drawing circles. Wise colleague said (he knew what state I was in) "isn't that nice. Sometimes I wish we could just draw circles". It stuck after that.

It's kinda like writers block. They say to just start scribbling and eventually the mind will catch up and writing will occur.
I even stick the circle filled sticky note on the wall. Just as a reminder there is a way to calm the storm.
I can appreciate that
 
I get “paralyzed” often. My list of “to do’s” only gets longer it seems, no matter how many things I cross off.

I made a big move 6 hours away from where I lived my whole life and where the family business was 2 years ago.

I moved my family, my shop, and the cnc machines as well. Doing that required an addition on the shop at the new place. I did it all myself, concrete, framing, drywall etc… plus it’s cold here all winter so I had to get things done as the seasons allowed.

We also are now on 40 acres with goats and chickens, and all kinds of outside yard work.

Still unpacking shop stuff, finding homes for everything all while trying to also get work done. Been a slow frustrating process.

I was trying to get things “perfect” in the shop, organize and put away the first time. What’s been helping is I have given up on that. I have come to terms I need things put away “good enough for now” if that means the shelving I built or racks I setup end up being moved 3 times over the coming years it is what it is.

My old shop space, grew slowly with time and things as they came got their homes the same way.

I just need to take steps and get things done and it’s not always the highest priority stuff, sometimes it’s just something that I can get done in a relatively short period of time. That gets the ball rolling for the next step.

It’s been 2 years since I moved and I feel like I have been a slug and not getting things done. But when I actually sit back and make a list of everything I have gotten done, that list is many miles long. Makes me feel better and gets me up and going again.
Something that helped me when I get 'lost', is to start in 1 back corner of the shop.
Rearrange and sweep, clean, organize, whatever.
It used to be when I would weld something and wait 15+ minutes for it to cool, I would play a game on my phone or something.
A little bit of housekeeping goes a long way mentally for me.
I had some metal cabinets in the back of my shop that when I first moved everything in, I had just piled the stuff in.
I have started cleaning them out and stacking stuff.
It's amazing how much room you have when you stack things.
Dollar tree has stackable storage bins for $1.25 and you can do wonders with them.
Also, I write on the outside of each cabinet what's in there.
It may sound stupid to others, but it gives me a feeling if accomplishment at the end of the week .
 
You need someone to hold you accountable.
Daily or every 4 hours check in
Realistic …. REALISTIC schedule setting for completion of projects.

Someone who can be tough on you for a year straight and not ruin your relationship.
(Or a relationship you don’t mind ruining)
Note: this can be a paid service.

I’m a one man band at home with wife and toddlers. It’s the best and worst thing.
Horrible for allowing me to stay focused on work tasks.
It’s tough man.
I’ve been thinking about all this lately and that’s what i need anyways.
Someone to be accountable to. I long for the days of a manager saying do this one task and report back. Lol

Think about your workflow and jobs you take on to.
Is there some equipment that may help? New machines, tool box organizers?
 
I suppose I have too many interests and projects.
I'm in that same boat! I'm also someone who relies on lists. I have a long, medium and short-term lists for projects and usually a small task list that I know I need to do really soon. I can look at the lists and think "which is the most important thing I need to do next" and it's usually pretty clear. If not, I pick the one I feel up to tackling.

When I get really stuck I'll often clean and organize the shop and more often than not that helps me focus. Simply getting the shop more organized brings a sense of accomplishment and gets me past being stuck.
 
I was trying to get things “perfect” in the shop, organize and put away the first time. What’s been helping is I have given up on that. I have come to terms I need things put away “good enough for now” if that means the shelving I built or racks I setup end up being moved 3 times over the coming years it is what it is.
Be very careful with that! I walk thru the shop and see many 'fernows'. Things that got put someplace 'for now' and now it's been 15 or 20 years. Just cleaned up a couple major cluttered areas that began as a small 'fernow' 20+ years ago. Afterward, I walk by and feel great relief, and think 'why the hell did it take so long to fix that'?
 
Be very careful with that! I walk thru the shop and see many 'fernows'. Things that got put someplace 'for now' and now it's been 15 or 20 years. Just cleaned up a couple major cluttered areas that began as a small 'fernow' 20+ years ago. Afterward, I walk by and feel great relief, and think 'why the hell did it take so long to fix that'?

Yeah I know how those accumulate over time. I am just stuck in the space between getting the new shop up and running and all the stuff I already had coming from the old shop space needing a home so I can work and earn $. Seems a lot easier when I had first just started getting going and had a very small amount of stuff to setup, then slowly added vs everything being on pallets and bins of stuff everywhere looking for a home in a somewhat smaller space, I have 10’ ceilings here where the old space was 20’ in a corner of a warehouses where I had forklifts and floor to ceiling pallet racks to utilize
 








 
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