Published: 07th December 2019
Canteen Fundas: Here's why it is important to finish all the tasks that we start
Pro Tip: Make it a habit to finish all that you start, especially the important tasks. It actually gets a lot of stuff done and leaves no room for procrastination
Bhaiyya, I started my exercise routine seriously,’ said Rinku. ‘But after two days I stopped. I’m mad at myself.’
‘Ah, the famous finishing problem!’ said Rakesh. ‘The world’s full of good intentions — get marks, get fit and so on. Most of us start, then our momentum fizzles out and we lose our pot of gold.’
‘What gold, bhaiyya?’ asked Rahul.
‘There’s a story of a man who was digging for gold,’ said Rakesh. ‘After much work, he finds gold. Then it dries up and he leaves. The new owner hires a mining expert who finds a lot of gold three feet away from where the previous owner stopped digging. What does the story tell you?’
‘If we do not persevere and finish what we started, all our work goes to waste,’ said Rinku.
‘Yes, the benefits of your work accrue only if you finish,’ said Rakesh.
‘How do we finish, bhaiyya?’ asked Rahul.
‘With practice,’ said Rakesh. ‘Start with finishing small tasks like making your bed, replying to emails and so on. Small practices build muscle and energise you. On the other hand, leaving things unfinished drains energy.’
‘Okay, bhaiyya,’ said Rahul. ‘What about bigger goals? Why do we lose motivation after a couple of days?’
‘Because most bigger, important things are long-term in nature,’ explained Rakesh. ‘We cannot see the results immediately. With no instant gratification we get distracted. Have you heard of the Chinese bamboo? Its seed is watered for four years during which time it stays underground. Only in the fifth year, it shoots up to a height of 90 feet in a mere six weeks. Be it exercising or studying, when you persevere, you’ll be surprised at the results.’
‘Aren’t some things not worth finishing?’ asked Rinku.
‘Good question,’ said Rakesh. ‘I read a blog by author Scott H Young on finishing things. He classifies things as ‘experiments’ and ‘commitments’. If it’s an experiment — a movie, book or a new idea, there’s no harm if you don’t finish it. But if it’s important for your growth, like studying, exercising, learning new things and so on, commit and finish.’
‘Thanks, bhaiyya,’ said Rahul with a smile. ‘Let’s drink small quantities of chai every day.’
Pro Tip: Make it a habit to finish all that you start, especially the important tasks. It gets a lot of stuff done.