Reasons to love a 100 day project (or any daily practice project)

Refines your skills.

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Practice makes perfect as the saying goes. Committing to work on your craft for 100 days gives you an opportunity to practice. And practice. And practice. No matter if your abilities are already developed or if you are just a beginner, setting a goal to improve your technique will be rewarding in the end, and there is always room for growth. I have been painting for many years pretty much completely with oils and I only made the switch to watercolor about a year ago, after the birth of my son. Committing to this project was a perfect opportunity to learn and explore techniques in this new medium. When I started the project I was so nervous and careful every time I put the brush down. Now I feel much more confident in my abilities and am not so fearful about messing up, which leads me to my next point...

 

Forces you not to be precious. I am still processing this, but I really think it is key. Some of the days you work on your project, you will not have as much time. Some of the days you will be tired. Some of the days you will not feel inspired. Some of your creations will not be good. But some of them WILL. I talk to so many people who have creative hopes or dreams but are so hindered in accomplishing them by fear. Fear of messing up, fear of not being good enough, fear of not having natural talent. But the thing is that when you start out, you are probably not going to be good, and even when you are more experienced you're still going to have bad days. But you have to push through the bad ones to get to the good ones. You must allow yourself to be creative. When I started this project I would really lament over a painting that had to be torn up, thinking what a waste of resources, paper and especially time (which as a mom IS very precious). But I am having a mind shift. Instead of thinking what a waste those hours were that I spent on those last 5 dud paintings, I'm starting to think about how those last 5 paintings that got torn up led me to this good one. They attributed to it and gave me the ability to accomplish it. When I see that messing up is all a part of the process, the creativity flows more freely.

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Creates a habit of practicing your craft. Common belief is that it takes 21 days to form a habit, but a recent study by the University College London suggests it's more like 66 days. Either way, 100 days should be plenty! I am really thankful for this aspect of the project. It got me motivated to prioritize and rearrange how I spend my time, and now painting after my boy goes to bed at night is just what I do. (I watch a LOT. LESS. NETFLIX. So worth it.) 

 

Pushes you to do the work when you don't feel like it. I did not stress myself out by the pressure to do this perfectly. I did have some missed days, because life. Nevertheless, there were many nights were I may not have painted had I not made this decision to paint every day.

So what do you think? Will you commit to a 100 day project?