“Whatever it takes to finish things, finish.
You will learn more from a glorious failure than you ever will from something you never finished.”
– Neil Gaiman –
We’ve talked before about why starting a project is difficult, but it’s the completion of the project that ultimately distinguishes those who succeed from the rest.
Kind of obvious, right?
You’re not a painter if you’ve never finished a painting.
You’re not an entrepreneur if all your great product ideas never make it to the clients.
And yet when it’s time to add the final stroke, or pick up the phone to make a sale, you pause. You delay. You make excuses.
You doubt whether the project will be successful, whether anyone will care, or if it even lives up to the vision we set out with.
Here’s the thing: it might fail. People might not be interested. And it probably isn’t as perfect as you imagined it would be.
But it doesn’t matter.
Every painting that doesn’t sell is a lesson in how to improve your form, or adjust your style.
Every call you make that doesn’t result in a sale is an opportunity to analyse why it didn’t work, and figure out why the next one will.
It hurts, sure, but avoiding that pain – and, as a result, avoiding your aspirations – only hurts more in the end.
In 1927, Russian psychologist Bluma Zeigarnik performed a series of experiments to determine the psychological impact of unrealised intention.
Through his research, he defined a phenomena called the ‘Zeigarnik Effect’, which posits that the human mind fixates on uncompleted tasks.
“An intention implies not so much a predetermined opportunity for its realization as it does a need or quasi-need whose dynamic state of tension makes opportunities”, he writes.
Essentially, Zeigarnik is reminding us that everything we do, we do for a reason. Failure to accept that is what sees people regretting their lives on their death bed.
You paint because you want to paint.
You are in business because you believe your products have value.
So why stop before the finish line?
This is the difference between dreamers and The 8 Percent.
The 8 Percent have the creativity required to found a project.
The 8 Percent summon the courage to dedicate themselves to it, even when things are at their most difficult.
The 8 Percent embody the excellence required to finish a project, and make the most out of it, no matter what that means.
Are you a dreamer, or are you one of The 8 Percent?
Go on. Prove it.