Stuck? Here’s How to Finish What You Start

For some reason it is extremely hard for me to finish what I start. I must work very hard to finish. Why am I like that and how can I overcome it? –Betty W.

When going for a goal, we can easily get overwhelmed by what’s required for completion, feel fearful of failing (or succeeding), or get distracted by something new and exciting…even just by life’s daily tasks. Next time you’re about to quit something, instead of being hard on yourself for this very natural inclination, use this guide to help solve the underlying challenge.

Reason #1: Feeling Overwhelmed

For every big goal, there are several small tasks to complete. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by what it takes to accomplish your goal, you may be biting off more than you can chew. Start by writing a list of every task you need to complete, then put them in order and start at the top. One step at a time.

Reason #2: Fear of Failure

When I find myself holding back for fear of failure, I reflect on this quote by Winston Churchill: “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” Even if you “fail,” you’ll learn valuable lessons to take into your next venture and have the pride of knowing you went for it. At the end of your days, don’t regret letting your fear get in the way.

Reason #3: Fear of Success

If I’m afraid of how my life will change or what people will think of me if I succeed, I remember these wise words from Marianne Williamson: “Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you …as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” Your success is a gift to us all.

Reason #4: Shiny Object Syndrome

As we move towards our desires, we find our creative flow making it easy to get excited about new ideas. But if we’re always jumping to the next big thing, we’ll never complete anything. If you’re dealing with a case of Shiny Object Syndrome, ask yourself: What would be the value of completing this first? Then, give yourself permission to start something new once you’ve completed the task at hand.

Reason #5: Too Much To Do

Have you ever fallen in love and found all the time in the world to be with your beloved? When something is truly important to us, we find time for it. When you’re overwhelmed by life’s demands, step back and take stock of your priorities. If your goal is high on your list, make time for it — no excuses. Set time aside, even if it’s just a few hours a week, to stay dedicated to your dream.

Each week, our resident life and career coaches will answer questions from readers. To submit yours, send an email to [email protected] Nisha Moodley is the founder of FIERCE FABULOUS FREE , through which she takes women on incredible adventures to create a clear vision for their future, and design their lives and work to align with that vision.

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