General Question

Jeruba's avatar

How do you tackle a big household project?

Asked by Jeruba (48719points) January 14th, 2019

Let’s say you have to empty a very full room for new carpeting, or pack up to move, or clear out a flooded basement. Something on that scale.

Do you make a detailed plan and follow it? just dive in and thrash through it? nibble away at it over time? enlist a legion of helpers? something else?

Is your best strategy also the one you actually practice, or do you intend one thing and do another?

If your approach doesn’t work well for you, what are you going to try next time?

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6 Answers

JLeslie's avatar

For carpet, I’d just start moving things out of the room, and if it leaves another room discombobulated I wouldn’t care. If I need to move books and some little things, I might put them into boxes if it’s a lot of items, I would pack up boxes as best I could so nothing gets damaged. If I don’t have packing paper to make sure a box is full, I’d mark the boxes with arrows for which side is up. If it’s just a few boxes I wouldn’t even worry about closing them. If it’s just two shelves of things, I’d just put the stuff on top of other furniture or on the floor most likely. It really depends on the quantity.

I wouldn’t write my plan down, even if it was a pretty big project, I’d plan it in my head. I think because I’m so familiar with my own house I don’t see a need to write it. Plus, eventually everything goes back into the room, and the items didn’t go far. It’s just for a few hours, or maybe a couple of days ahead. It’s so temporary that I don’t need a big plan.

If it is moving my home office, which I use for work, I would pick a place in the house to move my basic set up temporarily. Maybe the dining room. I still wouldn’t write it down. I’d have it all in easy sight, even if it made a mess of the dining room.

When I sold my business I wrote a list of items I needed to do to make sure I gave the new owner all I was supposed to give them and teach them. I also had a list for myself if items to finish, especially because we sold near the end of the year, and I wanted to complete business and close my corporation before the end of the year to avoid 2019 charges and needing to file taxes for 2019.

The latter isn’t household, but it was a big project. Writing this explanation for the Q reinforces for me that for household I don’t write plans down ahead of time.

If I was single I think I would mark my calendar when to replace the AC filter, and little household maintenance things. My husband does that stuff now.

As I age I write more down. I’m not sure if it’s actually my memory getting worse from aging, or if it’s that I’ve had more stress and more complexity in my life the last 6 years? If you ask me the same question in 5 years maybe my answer will be different.

canidmajor's avatar

My best strategy is the one I think up after the project is finished, and gets filed in the “What I should have done” folder.

My real strategy is to overthink everything until I’m almost at the deadline, then frantically, with no solid plan, scrabble about until everything is done, fueled by panic and pizza. I have moved houses a couple of times with that method, and unpacking is always interesting.

I never seem to learn, but stuff gets done and nobody dies, so I guess it all works.

janbb's avatar

OH my, you just panicked me. I have a room that I want recarpeted and didn’t think about having to move everything out. I’ve been angsting about having to unplug the Minotaur maze of the TV set up and how to reconstruct that.

Usually, I’m a nibble awayer at and an overthinker.

notnotnotnot's avatar

1. Research online how to approach the problem.
2. Outline a plan and make a list of needed supplies.
3. Purchase supplies.
4. Forget I purchased supplies or that I was going to do the project.
5. Add hard deadline in calendar.
6. Push deadline out multiple times over a period of months.
7. Finally attempt project, causing more damage in the process.
8. Research people who can help with the original project and the problems I caused by attempting it in the first place.
9. Swear off ever attempting to fix something myself.
10. Forget #9 and repeat at #1 on next project.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

If it’s a project I have done before it usually goes smoothly. The 2nd time I did flooring it turned out perfect. The first not so much. I try to do it myself but I enlist help when I need to and let them show me how even if they don’t realize that’s what I’m doing. I don’t start another until the current is complete.

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