Have we ever noticed how excited we are when we start anything? But it’s a sad fact that 70% of people abandon what they have started with so much energy and love. It could be as small as building a hobby or starting a pet project or even an activity or a side learning we started.
“Well begun is half done.” Aristotle did say this but we are judged for how we have finished something.
You separate yourself from the masses when you choose to give that task a finish. The first quality is finishing off what you started and it helps develop mental stamina or willpower. It builds confidence and inculcates as a habit in a long run. You don’t need to sign up for the mammoth activity to build this habit, even finishing mundane day-to-day routine tasks will help.
Diligence — the quality of working carefully and with a lot of effort
Diligence is a quality that almost never will get unnoticed. It’s one of the underlying traits of great works or success. The key to mediocrity on the other hand is getting satisfied with what you have done. And just like diligence, even this will never get unnoticed. The second quality is putting in a little more effort than you think you can. Once you have finished something, it just takes a little more time to polish it further. Invest 10% more time to make your work/output stand out.
“Don’t be afraid to give up the good to go for great.” J Rockefeller said that and Jim Collins happen to say the same thing “Good is the enemy of great”. We need to do better than what we think we can do. Quality of work is never absolute, it tends to lose its value with time. What is good now, will become okay after a while. The third most important quality is to do better than you think you can do. You can’t have low standards for yourself. Look at your work and see if this is the best you can do, would you be willing to be known for that quality of work, are you getting a sense of pride with the quality of work, is this the best you could have done. If the answer is no, keep refining it. Inculcate the habit of doing better than what you think can do.
Perhaps these 3 qualities combined together will product miraculous result, but the intent should be to inculcate them as a habit so that it comes naturally from within you and don’t have to appear as a checklist once you have finished something.