≡ Menu

Premium Courses: Self-Esteem | More Courses… | Free Email Updates: Join 80,000 awesome people.

How to Finish What You Have Started

Image: http://www.flickr.com/photos/muffmuff/ / CC BY-ND 2.0

Simply getting up from the chair, stopping all the theorizing and getting started is one of the biggest issues I believe people face. But to keep going until something is finished can also be a big issue (it has certainly been so at times for me at least).

I have however found a few solutions that work for me and help me to reach the finish line. Feel free to chime in with your own solutions that work for you in the comments.

Let go of perfectionism.

This has been a pretty big issue for me in the past. You want to polish everything until it is “perfect”. The problem is just that such thinking often leads to many things not ever being finished.

So you have to find a balance for yourself where you do good work and don’t slack off but at the same time don’t get lost in trying to improve and polish something too much.

I have found that balance through experience.

It is also very important to be aware that nothing will ever be perfect. Striving for perfection can be pretty dangerous. Because you will never feel like you are good enough.

You have set the bar at an inhuman level. And so your self esteem stays low even though your results may be very good.

So just focus on gradually being more consistent instead trying to be perfect.

Realize that good enough is good enough. And that goes both for your work and for you.

Set a deadline.

A few months ago, I set a deadline for when my ebook should be finished. I had realized that just working on it and releasing it when it was done would not work. Because I could always find stuff to add to it. So I had to set a deadline. Sure, I still missed it by a few days but finally I did the last 30 percent of the work and was done with it.

Setting a deadline gave me a kick in the butt and it is generally good way to help you to let go of a need to polish things a bit too much.

Limit yourself in all kinds of ways.

The last part of a project or a task can often feel pretty hard and it’s easy to get lost in procrastination. By setting limits for how often you check email each day, how much time you spend on social networks and forums, how much time you take to make small everyday decisions you can over a month or two develop these things into habits that run automatically most of the time.

By incorporating limits like these into your lifestyle you are less likely to get distracted during the last part of the work and you can keep
your eye on what’s important.

Make it light, don’t create a heavy cloud of drama, problems and complications in your mind.

Realize that much of this is in your head. Your perspective determines to a large degree what you see.

Your relationships to what you want to achieve are – just like your relationships to people – to a large extent just in your head. Try thinking that something is easy and simple instead of “heavy” and complicated and your perception of that external thing you want to achieve tends to change too. Experiment and find healthy and effective relationships to what you want to achieve instead of just seeing something like many people may do.

Bring awareness to you own thought patterns by asking yourself questions like:

“Honestly, am I overcomplicating this?” and
“What is the simplest and most straightforward solution to my problem?”

If you enjoyed this article, please share it on Stumbleupon and Twitter. Thank you very much! =P

Was This Article Helpful? Then Get Email Updates (it’s Free)

Join 80,000 awesome people today and get practical happiness tips and personal development advice in your inbox.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • I’ve had this tendency, not to finish things and to give up easily. As a result, I didn’t get the expected results in many cases. With the one thing I managed to continue, partly applying some of the golden rules you set above, I achieved some form of success!

  • Suvi

    Gahhhh, but I think perfection is just an opinion and other’s people’s concept of perfection is different than others.

  • You touch on my problem -about finishing what I have started… I am what you exactly described. Oh how I wish, what you suggest I should do will help me finally get over this problem. Thanks again Hendrik.

  • Tim

    I totally understanding everything you all are writing about. I know what I need to do but cannot get it done because I feel overwhelmed. It is really difficult for me to commit and finish anything — school, test, you name it. I know I need to take baby steps and do one thing at a time and suggestions are welcomed.

  • I’ve had sooo much trouble trying to get stuff done to the point my wife makes fun of me!
    Thanks for the post as I’m always trying to understand why the hell I do what I do!
    Great stuff indeed!


Want to Make a Real Change in
Your Life?

Then join 80,000+ people that subscribe to the FREE
Positivity Newsletter. Get 2-3 emails a week on how to:

Live a Happier and Simpler Life.

Boost Your Self-Esteem and Confidence.

Reduce Stress and Get What Truly Matters Done.

Improve Your Social Skills and Relationships.

Send this to friend


Thought you might like this article, How to Finish What You Have Started.

Here's the link: http://www.positivityblog.com/how-to-finish-what-you-have-started/