Sometimes our big projects and our daily tasks feel like juggling balls. We toss them in the air and hope we don’t drop them. All the while wondering which one is most important… which one should we stop and catch. Hoping the rest won’t come crashing down.
Put another way, many of us can be good at getting things started but find finishing much more difficult. Deadline or no deadline, the final touches can often become the sticking points. They pile up and create bottlenecks. In a mad dash to get more done, we jumpstart a new project before the last one is complete. So, everything ends up taking longer. And the quality of our efforts suffers too.
In this episode, I talk about the importance of finishing strong. Whether it’s a simple task, a major project or a period of life, the way we finish is often the difference between accomplishment and failure. Between a positive, can-do mindset and feelings of dejection and despair.
Listen now to learn how finishing strong can be a linchpin for getting the most out yourself and helping others do the same.
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(00:05): You’re listening to the Truest Fan podcast. And now here’s your host, Rob Brown.
(00:14): Hello, friends, great to have you back for this episode of the truest fan podcast, quick favor, go to your podcast player, you know that button that you can push to rate the podcast, please do it, and share a comment. I’d love to hear what you think of the work that I’m doing here on the Truest Fan podcast and also share it share the podcast, let’s spread the word. Thanks a bunch. Let’s get started.
(00:40): Do you ever have some words that stick in your head? You can’t shake them kind of like that song that music that just sticks with you and you you’re not able to figure out why? Well, I’ve had a couple of words, stick with me for the last several weeks, finish strong. I was wondering, you know, why finish strong? Why is that sticking with me? Why am I seeing that come up in a Bible study, in some work that I’m doing with my clients, in a conversation that I was having with a member of my family? Why the words finish strong or finish? Well, why was this coming back over and over again? And what is finishing strong?
(01:22): What does it mean to finish strong, and that as I was getting ready to record this podcast, I thought, you know, maybe the reason finished strong was dominating my brainwaves was that I just turned 61. So, I was thinking about my mortality and wanting to make sure that I finished my life strongly, you know, I’ve lived, you know, two 30-year periods. And if I’m lucky, I’ll live at least one more 30-year period. So, I want to make it the best that I can be I want to do big things, I want to help a lot of people, I want to be the person that I’m supposed to be. So, I want to finish strong. So that might be a part of it. And if that’s all it is, I think that’s okay. And I think it’s great for us to be thinking about that.
(02:09): If we’re thinking about being the best versions of ourselves, being people who live with intentionality, how do we finish strong? How do we stop starting things and not finishing them? And I think that does relate to life. And I know, and I see this all the time that sometimes starting things can be easy. Coming up with a new idea, a new project, following some bright, shiny object on a path can be really easy. But then as we get that thing started, especially if it was important, we don’t finish because finishing can be tough, because we have to nail down all of the details.
(02:55): So, I don’t know about you. But I think starting can be easy. But finishing strong can be difficult. It’s something that takes some concentration. Let me give a few examples. As I’m working with my clients quite often when I’m helping them look for a new member of their team, I encourage them to look for finishers, because they’re good starters. So, if they really want their business to advance and they want to finish things strongly, have a finisher on their team, somebody that can take all of their ideas, all of their plans and help nail down the details. Whether that’s nailing down the way that they put their portfolios together or financial plan together or schedule their regular ongoing client communications. It’s important if you’re going to start ideas, start plans, to finish them, so they come out as well as they possibly can.
(03:53): I guess I’m in even more specific idea that that came into my head as I was saying that is oftentimes when I talk to a client about how well a meeting went for them, maybe a big client meeting or a big presentation with a huge prospect. I’ll ask them about their meeting results. And they’ll talk about how great the meeting started. They began to make their points, they felt eloquent, like they were hitting all the right buttons. But then when they got to the end, when they needed to make their final point, they needed to go for the clothes, they fell flat. And when we investigate that what we find most often is they didn’t prepare for the finish, they’re not finishing strong, was not strongly finishing the way they got ready for the meeting, which made that meeting that proposal difficult to finish strongly.
(04:46): Is that ever happened to you as you’re preparing for a big meeting or a big event or a big presentation? I know that it can happen in little things too. There are all sorts of little things in life that we know we just need to kind of put the final touch on, but we don’t do it. And then when we don’t do it, it’s like this nagging thing in the back of our brains. Why haven’t we just gone ahead and finish that so we can check it off of our list.
(05:13): I can give you a great example in my personal life. I’ve got this fancy little handheld Dyson vacuum cleaner. And when I was cleaning it out the other day, a couple of pieces fell out that I don’t know how to easily put back in. And so now when I use that vacuum, it doesn’t work as well. Is it supposed to so every time I use it, I’m kicking myself saying why didn’t I just put that back together, those pieces are sitting right next to on my kitchen counter where I have to see them every day, and I just don’t finish. Hopefully I’ll do that right after I finished recording this podcast, but just little things like that, that can kind of keep you on nerves, keep you on edge and keep you from moving forward with things that are really important.
(06:00): So, there are big things like life making proposals or little things like my Dyson vacuum cleaner that I have to consider we should consider when we think about this idea of finishing strong. I really want to encourage you to think clearly about this. What are you working on right now that’s kind of open, it’s unfinished, you know, you need to finish it, you may not know exactly how to finish it. But you haven’t stopped to take the time to think about what the steps are for finishing that project, for putting that agenda together for creating that plan, whatever it might be. Think about your meetings with your team. You know, in those meetings, do you go in and just discuss stuff but not decide at the end of the meeting who and how and when you’re going to take action on the things that you’re talking about so you’re really moving forward?
(07:00): Are you ready to discover your true purpose, live with impact and build an ever-greater legacy, then you need to make time for what truly matters most go to truestfan.com/challenge to begin the free, truest fan seven day QuickStart.
(07:25): You know, in a planning session recently with one of my clients, he started talking about all of these crazy things that were going on in his business, he lost one of his key employees, he just seemed to have, you know, one member of his family after another come down with the flu. So, he was kind of topsy turvy, at home. The markets have been going crazy, so he’s had more to consider in terms of looking at his client’s investment portfolios. And as we were talking, even though we were supposed to be focusing on his key objectives for the next 12-week sprint that we’re working on, he just wanted to talk about stuff that we had no real control over.
(08:06): But finally, I said you know, it’s time. What are the top three things that you want to do in this sprint and this quarter, and boom, boom, boom, he nailed it. He nailed three really important items to work on. And I said to him, you know, how do you feel now? Don’t you feel better, even though things are kind of going a little bit crazy in your life that you finished your initial plan for this quarter, and you know specifically what you need to work on. So, he finished his planning strong with these three items that he’s going to be working on. And he has a chance to finish the quarter this next 12 weeks sprint strongly because he knows exactly where to focus. And he can take his thoughts consistently back to those three items.
(08:54): It will not guarantee but give them a much better chance of finishing strongly because there’s little distraction that can get in the way when you ask yourself the question, how will these new things that I encounter helped me accomplish the three most important things that I’m working on? So, I hope this is making sense because I really think it’s important because we don’t talk about it or think about it enough. We need to think about how we can finish strong.
(09:24): Think about your day, you know, at the end of your business day, do you polish the day off in a way that you can say you know, I had a good day because I finished the things that I needed to work on. Or how about in the evening as you’re going to bed? Do you have a way to end the day positively so you can finish the complete day strongly? Maybe an opportunity for meditation or prayer or just a time of gratitude. So, you can say you know, this day is over. I’m finishing this day strongly because I am reflecting back on what I have done and what I have accomplished. And I can sleep and rest easily because I know I finished strongly, finishing is a big, big deal.
(10:14): Do you ever get in arguments, you know, especially those circular arguments where no matter how many times you go back and forth, each person in the argument says the exact same thing, as they’ve said before, and there’s no coming together? What if you or well, since I’m talking to you, it has to be you because the other people aren’t listening right now. But what if it was you that stopped that argument said, you know, this is silly, we’re just going around in circles, let’s finish this argument, this disagreement strongly, let’s come up with one or two things that we can do to move forward to get past these hard feelings to accomplish what we really need to accomplish. So, we can accomplish that thing that we’re arguing over, you can finish an argument strongly.
(11:03): Finishing strongly I think, is essential. I, again, I guess I’m feeling very, like reflecting because I’ve had this birthday, and this finished strong ideas has kind of popped up over and over again. But how about you? And how about your life? Where are you right now in your relationships, in your business developments in the community engagements that you’re involved in, those causes that you care about? Do you have steps in place, ideas in place that will allow you to continue to move forward in those things so you’re moving towards a strong finish? Have you defined what a strong finish might be?
(11:50): As I as I’m saying this, I’m thinking actually about some clients that I’m working with right now who are making decisions as one of the, as the senior member of their team is thinking about retiring in the next five or six years, and they have a succession plan in place, they know what’s going to happen in terms of who gets to own, which share of the business, which clients, different people will handle, some of them mechanical pieces of that, but they haven’t really thought about what that’s going to feel like for them as a team, because as this team member walks away, there will be a big hole. So how are they going to finish strongly this phase of their business, as they say so long to a partners work with them for a long period of time. They have an end coming, and they have to really think about what that means.
(12:46): So that’s another case of finishing strong, they need to finish strong, not just the individual who’s might be retiring and walking away from the business, but the whole team, because there’ll be something missing, there’ll be something different about that business when he walks away. So, here’s what I’d like you to do. I like you to take some action. You know, that’s a big thing on this podcast, I don’t like to just talk about ideas and concepts. I like to think about how can my audience, how can you actually take an idea that I’m sharing and put it to work right away, because unless you put it to work, it’s just it’s not finishing strong actually, finishing strong is actually taking listening to a podcast like this, watching some training, getting some instruction, and then taking it and putting it to work that’s finishing strong.
(13:34): So how can you finish strong, a podcast on finishing strong? A few suggestions. First, ask yourself, where do you need to finish strong what’s going on in your life right now that you need to put some closure to that could use a strong ending? Does it relate to something that you’re doing with your family? Does it relate to an activity that you’re working on? So, what are those things that you could be that you are doing that need the express intention of deciding how you’re going to finish it strong. So, number one decide what those things are.
(14:14): Number two, put them in order, you’re not going to be able to do them all at once. Because if you’re like a lot of us, you’ll come up with a bunch of ideas, a bunch of things that you can work on, but you can’t work on them all at the same time, because they won’t end up getting finished because they’ll all take away from each other. So, decide to put in order, what are what are the things that you’re going to that you’re going to give that attention to, that you’re going to say I’m going to give extra attention to make sure I finish this strongly, so you know what the list is, but now put them in order because unless you put them in order, you’re likely to wander. And then finally, just go do it. Just finish them off one at a time, identify what they are, put them in order and go to work. I know it sounds Simple, but that’s a way to finish strong.
(15:04): Well, I hope this is helpful. Again, I want to ask you please rate this podcast, share a comment, share it with your friends and colleagues. I want to spread the Truest Fan word because to me there’s nothing more important than trying to look for ways to be our best, to believe in ourselves, to believe in others and to take action to make this crazy world a better place. So, thanks for listening, and we’ll talk to you next week.
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