David Allen on Finishing What You Started

Much of the stress that people feel doesn’t come from having too much to do. It comes from not finishing what they’ve started — David Allen

It’s February. The momentum (and pressure) of the New Year has died down. What have you started that you haven’t finished? Can you drop it?

Sometimes not finishing is a good thing. You do enough to realize this isn’t the right move, hobby, next step to take, and then you know enough about yourself that you redirect your efforts. That’s a good example of not finishing.

But sometimes not finishing is inadvertent. We meant to continue, but other things got in the way. If it still matters, resolve to finish. Get the support, clarification on next steps, blocks of time, or whatever you need to get to the end.

Either way, you don’t want open items running around in your mind or your schedule. It’s like a computer that didn’t properly shut down an application and then needs to use extra resources to keep something unwanted running in the background. Reboot! Either redirect to begin anew or resolve to finish.

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