It’s not uncommon to get so overwhelmed with our seemingly never-ending “to-do” lists that we feel as if we’re lost in our own life. Bogged down in stress, it can be extremely hard to find the motivation and inspiration to finish everything we start. Yet, as we endlessly chase more time and energy, not finishing important tasks we’ve started can begin to build up. This dangerous pattern can make us appear irresponsible, inefficient, and uninterested, ultimately creating even more stress. Therefore, it’s important to learn how to finish what you start before falling into a pit you cannot get out of.
Here are 9 important ways to go about finishing what you start:
- Be selective in what you embark on.
- Too many people overload themselves by saying “yes” to everything. Yet, no matter how educated or smart you may be, no one can do it all. Therefore, it’s important to think before you say, “yes.” Try your best to keep the “yes’s,” for the things you’re most passionate about.
- Estimate Resources Needed
- Don’t say “yes” until you’ve thought everything through. What resources will you need to complete this task? Are there further questions regarding money, etc. that you should ask before providing a definitive answer?
- Budget Your Time and Energy
- Before saying “yes” glance at your calendar to make sure you can realistically complete this task in a timely manner. How much time will it take you to complete? Given your current schedule, will you have the energy to put in this amount of time? If yes, make sure to plan accordingly right away.
- Remember that No One is Perfect (Stop being a Perfectionist!)
- In order to finish everything we start, we need to stop obsessing over small details. Focus on the bigger picture of the task, and what you’re truly trying to accomplish. From here, decide which details are more or less important to the overall completion of the task.
- Commit to it
- When you commit to a task, one of the most important aspects is meeting the deadline. Failing to meet a deadline, only reflects poorly on you and your ability to manage your time and energy. When you’ve been asked to take on more responsibility, it’s almost always a sign you’re doing well in your work. Don’t ruin it by not sticking to your word!
- Connect with Your End Vision
- When feeling uninspired, think back to why you originally took on this task. What did you envision as the end result? Who will your hard work ultimately affect? How will it affect them? We won’t always feel inspired when working, but it’s important to stick to the original path of why we started what we’re doing.
- Track Your Progress
- This one is extremely important. Right after you’ve accepted a task, make a “to-do” list of all the elements you’ll need to complete by the deadline. From here, map out when you plan to complete each piece of the task. Every time you complete an item on your list, cross it off. This way, you’ll know how far along you are at every point in time before the deadline.
- Celebrate What You’ve Done so Far
- This one is pretty self-explanatory, but give yourself credit each time you complete part of the task! Remember that you are not only responsibly moving forward on the task itself, but you are doing it in a timely, well-thought-out manner. This will reflect very well on you!
- If it’s Really Not Working Out, Communicate Effectively!
- If you’ve run into some unexpected issues, and now feel that the deadline or even the task itself is nearly impossible, communicate immediately with the person in-charge. This happens to all of us every once in awhile, so don’t wait to communicate with the facilitator because you’re worried they might conclude you’re irresponsible or inefficient at what you do. It will show more responsibility if you choose to communicate the issues right away.