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I’m one of those people who love to start something new. I’m also that same person who gets bored and often leaves projects undone while chasing a new bright, shiny object. I know I shouldn’t do this, and the allure of something new seems to get my attention every time.

Is this something that sounds like you? Or are you the person who finishes no matter what?

Success comes from finishing.

The hard thing for those of us who love bright shiny objects is understanding that we have to finish and do something for it to count. Dreaming about it doesn’t count. Saying I’ll get to it tomorrow doesn’t count. Saying I need to do more research doesn’t count either.

The world is a messy place and getting to done will always be a little boring and more than a little annoying. Starting is exciting. Ending is often anti-climatic. Without getting to the end, you never have a finished project.

Think about breaking up what you’re doing.

I have a hard time looking at a giant project, and then getting it finished. The only way I’ve ever been able to do big, hard projects is to break them into smaller pieces. I often refer to this as chunking down a project.

Chunking down means taking the large project and breaking it up to smaller pieces. If a section of what you’re doing has over five or six pieces to it and it’ll take more than four or five hours, you need to think about breaking it your project into smaller pieces.

Smaller pieces allow you to move through your project, and you’ll do it much more quickly than if you try to plan and execute your project at once. This is true with projects at home and projects at work.

There are times to start and times to stop.

Part of the problem with doing big projects is they often fail because we aren’t looking for success patterns along the way. This makes finishing harder. If we don’t build in positive and negative feedback into what we’re trying to accomplish, we might quit too early or stay with something for too long.

Remember my mantra… fail fast/fail cheap

Chunking down a big project into smaller pieces allows you to adjust along the way. When you think of a big project in chunks of four or five hours of work, you can build in patterns of success and failure and look at what you’re doing honestly.

I think some problems we have with large projects are we get caught in the weeds. Having smaller pieces and smaller projects within a larger project make it a lot easier to get to a point where the project is done.

If you’re not finishing, you’re just spinning your wheels.

Let’s take a trip back to the beginning of this post. The future belongs to finishers. If you limit what you’re working on and don’t juggle too many projects at once, you will have a better chance of finishing.

If you have a way of checking to see if your project still makes sense along the way, you have a better chance of finishing.

If you have a good reason for doing the project with a clear outcome of what you’re trying to accomplish, you have a better chance of finishing.

When you have the discipline to say no or not yet to new ideas, you have a better chance of finishing.

I want you to finish with a high level of success. The best way for this to happen is to follow some of these simple rules.

What do you think about the idea that the future belongs to finishers? Why don’t you let me know by leaving a comment below?

Topics: projects, finishing, fail fast fail cheap

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