There are times when I struggle to get things done. I’m a really good starter of things – I love starting things. I can always see how I want it finished (a little shout out to Covey – Begin with the end in mind). But like most things you start, eventually things get bogged down, and getting them over the finish line can be hard. It’s probably why most projects fail, it gets tough, so we stop and move onto the beginning of something else – because that’s fun and exciting. I’ve learned this about myself over the years and I do two things to help myself. First – I surround myself with people who have great resolve to getting things done, the type of folks who don’t sleep well at night because they know there was that one glass left in the sink, and they should really get up and put in away. I love those folks – they aren’t me – I hire them ever time I get the chance. I even married one of those types – she makes me better! Second – I force myself to not start something new, until I finish what I’ve already started. This can be annoying, I’m sure, for those around me because sometimes projects have to go on hold – while you wait for feedback, or other resources, etc. This makes me antsy – I like to get things finished!
I was re-introduced recently to a quote from the novel Alice in Wonderland that I think really puts in perspective what it takes to get something done. The quote is from the King of Hearts and it is quite simply:
“Begin at the beginning and go on till you come to the end: then stop.”
Your 3 Steps:
2. Go till the end
We make it much harder than that – but it really isn’t. I like simple stuff – it fits into my mind quite well. It might be the best advice I’ve gotten in a really long time. I don’t need pre-planning, or post project assessments, or update meetings, or budget reviews, etc.
Naive? Probably. But, sometimes you just need to Begin, go to you come to the end: then stop.