Sometimes we have done all the things necessary to complete a task and on the final day we fall flat. Why is that? We get all the way to end and we somehow, someway, fail to finish it. I spoke to LSU swimming recently and harped on the idea of showing up being 90% and that the other 10% was busting ass to do the thing we have agreed to the right way. Maybe that should be split even further. Maybe that last 10% is 9% busting ass and the final 1% is finishing.
Some of my most proud moments in life have come from simply seeing something through to the end. In 2007 after the completion of an epic night in the water I spoke to a friend of mine and he asked. “How do you feel today?” I answered, “I could die today completely fulfilled.” Of course this was an exaggeration but at that moment I felt like I had started something huge, worked like hell for 6 months (99%),and finished it (1%).
At the time I had been dealing with a failed business that I was struggling to separate from myself as a personal failure. I needed to know I could see something through and win (finish), and it was one of the most fulfilled I had ever felt.
In my life I have started too many things that I haven’t finished and I sometimes beat myself up over it. While I’m not awesome at it, I do try to give myself a break and recognize that I sometimes set impossibly difficult things to pull off, and a lot of those have come to fruition. Other times I just start and never finish and as fulfilling as finishing is, loose ends are conversely as unfulfilling and are enormous stressors.
I guess the point of all this is twofold. First, give yourself a break for not finishing everything and second. Pick something you have started and do what it takes to see it through to the end. You’ll never regret it.
If it’s worth starting, it’s worth finishing.