The Better Projects Experience
So you're not ready or able to join a Better Man Project men's group or work one on one with Steve? If you need to go it alone for now you're going to need a structure. We've got you covered.
Think of your work as what you’re focusing on in your life right now. Work is always a process. It can be a new habit, a positive behavior that a person wants to practice, an exercise they commit to trying, or a question they want to explore. If you want to read more about identifying work in your life, read my article on identifying your work HERE.
Since deciding what to work on and then staying on track can be overwhelming, I recommend using a structure that makes the next step clear. That's where your Project Framework comes in.
To get started do this:
Take some time to read over the description of the framework below and then get to work identifying a project you want to work on.
Once you have a project you think you want to tackle, try using the guide below to begin filling in your first worksheet.
If you want help filling in the worksheet let me know when we meet, that’s what I’m here for.
Refer to the framework at least once a day and update it as needed.
Look over the blank version of the framework. Let’s take a closer look at each section so you can begin using it immediately.
Project identification is what you’re going to name the hard work you want to focus on.
You can’t change everything at once. Pick a project and focus on it for a while. You can always change your mind later. This is a chance to get clear with yourself about what feels most urgent in your life right now.
I suggest you make a list of possible projects and spend some time thinking about which one or two are most pressing in your life today. Ask yourself which issues in your life you’d most like to improve and write them down. If you’re not sure what your project should be consider reviewing my article on identifying your work HERE. To get you thinking, some great projects are:
Break out of a rut in my marriage
Improve my sex life
Learn how to care for myself
Feel more comfortable in difficult workplace conversations
Those are just some ideas to get you thinking. Your project should feel like something that really matters to you right now. Once you’ve selected at least one project from your list that feels most urgent to you right now, write it on the blank framework in the Project line.
Guiding principals are the overarching concepts that you’ll use to tackle this project.
What’s written here will guide the work you do on your project. I have included a list of some of the most powerful concepts I use in my work with clients HERE. Start by using that list to choose from. You can add your own and keep a menu to choose from when you begin a new project.
Tools is a list of techniques you can experiment with to advance your project.
These ideas can come from any source that resonates with you. Mine multiple sources for ideas of tools you might use — books that you read, articles with good ideas, suggestions you get from friends or any other source of ideas for things you might want to try. The Tools section of the framework should get updated as often.
Practices is a list of the real life opportunities to use the tools you’ve identified.
Each item on this list should be linked to at least one specific tool. In other words, you should identify specific times you will try using one of the tools on your tools list. Be specific about when, where, and how you’ll practice the tool. For each practice there’s a debrief section with some questions for you to answer.
Having a running list of practices means you can never say, “I don’t know what to do,” or, “nothing much has been going on this week.” If those statements are true you’ll know it’s because you choose for them to be. It will be because you’ve made a decision to drift, not because life didn’t present you with any chances to grow, learn, or change. If you want to drift then drift! No judgment. Just do it with your eyes open.
If you commit to putting your practices into action you’ll progress. Your life will change and you will experience something different from what you’re used to.
Better Man Project has a whole menu of pre-populated project frameworks for men and couples. These have been personally curated by Steve Sutton, LCSW. Years of experience has gone into each one of them and they are an unbelievably powerful way to get stared creating the life you want. Take a look at some of the project frameworks available to get you started. Once you own the framework, you can customize it by adding or removing any tools, concepts, or practices you want. Or, you can run the framework just as it is and begin getting results.