Begin and End

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It’s officially 2006 now, so let’s take a little survey. How many New Year’s resolutions have you broken so far? One? Yeah. It happens. That whole cutting down on beers thing that went by the way side on New Year’s Day brunch was probably doomed anyway… Two? Understandable. Sadly, you overdosed on carbs at an early dinner that very same day, which totally happens.


But the number doesn’t really matter. In the career game, slow and steady wins the race. Think tortoise, not hare, and focus your energy where it will create the greatest return. Last blog, I wrote about how conquering little steps can lead to goal fulfillment. Now, as you stare at the ruins of your New Year’s resolutions, analyze briefly a moment in time when you began something positive, something that would have an impact on your productivity or pull you closer in some way to meeting a professional goal. If you completed what you began, you’re good. Tiny victories can lead to big things. But if you began, stopped and never finished, take a moment to figure out why. Was it boredom that stayed your hand? Were you unsure or fearful, and did those feelings keep you from following through?


In the career game, you can’t hesitate when it comes time to roll the dice. Beginning something is fine, but finishing it is better, and if you don’t finish that first time out, do so the next time or the time after that. Before you can conquer the career ladder, you have to clear the rocks away from the bottom of the ladder so that when you start climbing, the ground doesn’t get away from you. One of your rocks might be procrastination. If so, congratulate yourself for beginning an important project, enrolling in a certification prep class or finishing the latest review on the hot new technology. Congratulate yourself for taking a step, but don’t celebrate until you complete something. Realize that without an end a beginning is not more than an attempt.

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