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Step 7: Completion - Take it to the finish line

A person is putting in the last piece of a puzzle
Take those last steps to completion

I’m a recovering “90 percent-er”. That means I get to about 90% completion on a lot of things and then I get distracted, lose momentum, or don’t feel like dealing with the last details.

I used to run a townwide clean-up project, “Tidy Up Trumbull.” I always had the energy to connect with volunteers, select locations for the clean-up, and coordinate the work, but once the event was over, I lost the drive to keep going. The last details, like putting supplies away, writing up the final report and sending thank you notes would get delayed. Sound familiar?

I realized, after Reflection, that completion in this particular case had two definitions. Completion of the actual project, and completion of all the follow-up steps.

Never reaching full completion can happen in all sorts of projects or issues – you start to organize, prepare, write, go on a diet, or plan a big life transition. And then something happens.

What helps you get all the way to the end? What helps you get back on track after you’ve lost momentum?

In my last post, I mentioned that Action happens when you have Assessed your options and created a good Plan. In earlier posts, I talked about the value of positive self-talk. I believe the same elements are helpful to reach Completion.

You need to have a plan and positive self-talk that keeps you motivated to the end, helps you get back in action if you’ve taken a break, and acknowledges that the journey to Completion will probably have some hiccups! It’s OK. You can start again. You can get back behind the wheel and put your engine in forward gear, not neutral or reverse.

In my personal life, I recetly had all the usual “completions” to work on before the end of the year – gifts for the holidays, decorating, laundry to catch up on, and holiday cards to send. Remembering my “why” kept me motivated. I also remind myself that a little bit of progress each day gets me closer to the finish line and saves me from a lot of last-minute stress (a great mindset to have).

For my business, I have a few things to complete in the next several weeks. If it's the beginning of a new year, as it is right now, it's always helpful to identify the "incompletes" that are still waiting to be checked off, then go to the next step in the Action Cycle - Reflection. Personally, I will celebrate my accomplishments (like publishing my book!), I’ll select my goals for 2024 and a new round of projects will begin. More about that in the next post: Reflection.

For now, keep repeating:

"I think I can. I think I can. I think I can. I know I can.” From The Little Engine That Could,

by Watty Piper


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