Project 101

[Updated: 10 November 2011] This project has now finished, sadly with only a 3rd of my tasks I set for myself completed. I’ll be writing a fuller update to this soon.

The Mission:
Complete 101 preset tasks in a period of 1001 days.

The Criteria:
Tasks must be specific (i.e. no ambiguity in the wording) with a result that is either measurable or clearly defined. Tasks must also be realistic and stretching (i.e. represent some amount of work on my part).

Why 1001 Days?
Many people have created lists in the past – frequently simple goals such as New Year’s resolutions. The key to beating procrastination is to set a deadline that is realistic. 1001 Days (about 2.75 years) is a better period of time than a year, because it allows you several seasons to complete the tasks, which is better for organising and timing some tasks such as overseas trips or outdoor activities.

For me, there’s a special significance about the ‘end date’ – it’s my 40th, and I don’t want be wake up that day wondering what I have missed out on…

Start: February 12, 2009
Finish: November 11, 2011

Tasks DoneTasks LeftDays GoneDays LeftLast Updated
33781001010 Nov 2011
a) Travel/Adventure
1. Kayak down the Yarra
2. Visit the MacKenzie falls
3. [IN PROGRESS] Mountain bike all Rail Trails (5/53!)
4. Drive the Great Ocean Road
5. Compete in the Otway Odyssey 100km MTB race (need to complete, not compete)
6. Ride/Discover the Dandenong Ranges
7. Train/Bus to Sorrento for a picnic day on the beach
8. Ride the Puffing Billy
9. Complete a Yarra Valley wine tour (with at least one cellar door visit)
10. Go to a AFL Game (Saints v Carlton)
11. Balloon Ride over Melbourne + Yarra
12. Visit Eureka Skydeck 88
13. Complete the 115km alpine Three Peaks Challenge
14. Attend F1 in Melbourne
15. Swim with the Dolphins
16. Visit the Aquarium
17. Drive/Camp around/in Tasmania
18. Skydive solo (eek)
19. Attend an outside movie screening
20. Go surfing at Bells Beach
21. Attend a concert at the Myer Music Bowl
22. Take an interstate train ride
23.  [50%] Ride every tram route in Melbourne (4/28)
24. Attend a theater performance in Melbourne
25. Late dinner in the Tramcar Restaurant
26. Attend every IMAX major movie screening
27. Visit Ayers Rock (Uluru)
28. Visit the Koala Conservation Center
29. Spend a evening in the Chill Bar
30. Visit/Photograph both caves (Princess Margaret and Buchan)
31. Scuba dive a shipwreck
32. Snorkel at the Great Barrier Reef
b) Personal Improvement/Well-being
33. Commence tertiary study (part time)
34. Stop buying lunches/coffees (make my own) for a month
35. Join a martial arts club (Aikido?)
36. Find a new family doctor
37. Get a full health checkup
38. Find a new dentist
39. Fet a full dental
40. Go to an optometrist and get an eye exam
41. Get health insurance
42. [IN PROGRESS] Work out at LEAST three times a week (penalty: 13)
43. Reach and maintain 90kg or less (currently 91)
44. Volunteer at least one full day to my favorite charity
45.  [2/5] Read 5 classic novels (pre 1900)
46. Write a (legal) will
47. Buy someone something anonymously from their wishlist
48. Donate to open-source software that I use
49. Get someone else to start a 101 list
50. Reach and maintain the ability to at least 100 push-ups at once
51. Read the Bourne trilogy
52.  [IN PROGRESS] Order something different from a restaurant menu each time
53.  [IN PROGRESS] Pick-up at least one piece of litter every time I see any
54. Get to 'excellent' on the 'Sit and Reach' index
55. Walk to and from work for a week
56. Start writing my auto-biography (not for vanity, but to remember)
57. Donate blood at least once a year | [IN PROGRESS] Mountain or Road ride at least once a week and track each time
58. Learn conversational Mandarin
c) Beating Procrastination
59. Say 'yes' to any unsolicited offer to do something (legal) I get from a friend (that doesn't conflict with another)
60. Save at least $100 a month
61. Buy and maintain a Bonsai tree
62. Pay off all credit cards
64. Read at least one self-improvement finance book
65. Wind-up all overseas accounts
66. Create a budget (and try to stick to it)
67. Record ALL outgoing expenditure for a month
68. Give away all items of clothing I haven't worn more than twice in the last 12 months
69.  [IN PROGRESS] Maintain an active calendar and to-do list
70. Plan as much of this Project 101 on said calendar
71. Create and publish a PostSecret
d) Website/Photography
72. Photograph Philip Island wildlife (penguins, seals and koalas)
73. Take smoke art photo(s)
74. Create and publish a Blurb book of my favourite shotscreate and publish a Blurb book of Paul's poems
75.  [IN PROGRESS] Geo-tag every photo on my site
76.  [IN PROGRESS] Republish every photo on flickr, complete with backlinks
77. Re-design my site
78.  [IN PROGRESS] Resize all smaller photos
79. Comment (constructively) on 30 different photoblogs for 30 days
80. Print, frame and giveaway 5 of my photos
81. Re-join and submit at least monthly to DPC
82. Complete my website optimization post
83. Write at least one rhetoric article a month
84. Take a photo of myself (same pose/position if possible) on the 1st of every month
85. Buy an old film camera
86. Take at least one roll of photos with film camera
87. Learn how to process film
88. Order, tag and categorise all my images on my computer
89. Create an automated back-up of my image library
90. Meet an online photographer
91. Take photos from Southern Star wheel (if it re-opens)
92. Take inside HDR photos of Melbourne's two biggest churches
93. Photograph every church along every tram route
94. Get a shutter release cable
95. Take photos of the fall leaves at Macedon
96. Visit and Photograph the Perry Sandhills
e) Finishing Up
97. Donate $10 for every task I fail to complete to my favourite charity
98. Spend $10 for every task that I complete on a reward to myself
99. Add one more task in the last month
100. Start a new list
101. Have somebody else suggest something that I MUST do

Some conditions:
To ensure there is actual motivation to complete more regular tasks (e.g. exercise 3 times a week), a penalty (normally a $10 fine) will be accumulated and deducted from my end prize/reward. This penalty must be recorded every time it occurs (shown by Penalty: x) at the end of each task listing.


  1. Great idea to actually write it out in public, is it helping you to feel like you have to fulfill everything more that you otherwise would have?

  2. I love the whole idea and would like to think I could make my own list. Unfortunately, I know myself too well to know it would be a complete waste of time. Kudos to you Mike!

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