If there ever was a key to the success of any project boat it surely is Persistence. There will be days and weeks where it feels like no progress is being made, or worse yet you feel like you are going backwards. The trick is not to get discouraged and give up at these times. If success is to be had you need to keep moving ahead one small step at a time even if it does not feel like you will ever reach the end.
One of the biggest mistakes I see with project boats is the owner who leaps in with untold enthusiasm only to quickly fade and give up. Most of time there is no thought to pack it in. The work just slows down, motivation begins to fade and other things take on a greater importance. A project boat is not a race or contest it is a journey and as a journey should move at a steady pace that will not exhaust or wear you down. I have always liked the analogy of eating the elephant. You cannot eat an elephant whole. You have to proceed slowly one bite at a time. If you take on too much all at once you will soon get sick of it. This is a trap many fall into.
Climb Mount Fuji
But slowly, slowly!”
― Kobayashi Issa
The trick is to keep moving, keep momentum even if it is slow momentum. Slow and steady is better than a fast crash. I know we all want to get things done and get out on the water but I have seen way too many jump in with great enthusiasm only to quickly burn out. There is nothing wrong with a full speed ahead approach as long as it does not lead to early burnout. A little progress is still progress.
Do not let the failures and surprise problems slow you down or discourage you. Part of the joy of a project boat is over coming the challenges, the things that would stop others in their tracks. It is the little victories that make a project boat worthwhile so make sure you do something every now and then that will allow you such a victory. If you find your self hanging from your prehensile tail in the bilge for too long take a break and go varnish a door or table. You can then sit back and enjoy at least one shining example of what your boat is soon to become.
“Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.”
― Winston Churchill
Persistence will separate you from the ones who fail!