This post is a part of our New Year’s Book Club! If you haven’t already, check out our introduction post to learn more about book club and download our free resources! You can purchase the book here. “Starting is fun, but the future belongs to finishers.” – Jon Acuff Here we are, at the end of our first-ever Invest Leadership book club! Maybe you’re just now joining us — in which case, I encourage you to start from our introduction post. Maybe you’ve been reading along but weren’t quite ready to purchase the book to follow along. Maybe you had every good intention of following through with the readings, but got caught up in all the other things in your to-do list. Whatever your situation, it’s okay. The main takeaway of Jon Acuff’s book is simply this: Things are almost never going to turn out the way you originally planned them to. Nothing is ever going to be perfect. But that doesn’t mean you can’t cross the finish line. [bctt tweet="Nothing is ever going to be perfect. But that doesn’t mean you can’t cross the finish line." username="dukematlock"] In the last chapter of his book, Chapter 8, Jon goes over what he calls “final fears.” The fears that keep you from finishing the race. Imagine: You’re so close to finishing your goal. You have pushed through the hard times, the discouraging middle, and you see the light at the end of the tunnel. But still, you don’t finish. It’s possible that you were afraid the outcome wouldn’t meet your expectations. Or you were waiting for things to be perfect. So you abandon the project in its final stages. “You get to hold on to the illusion that you could finish if you really wanted to. Rather than try to find out you might not be good, you hide in the myth of maybe.” (pg. 182) When those final fears creep up on you — and they will, as Jon assures us — keep fighting. Keep pushing, because you’ve worked too hard to give up now!
WEEK FIVE TAKEAWAYS:
1. If you want to finish your goals, phone a friend.
“We need friends during the entire goal, but they are most critical at the finish line.” (pg. 181) If you find yourself struggling with doubt or those “final fears,” call someone you trust. As someone who cares for you, I can’t imagine they’d let you give up that easily. Let their words give you the final push you need to keep going until the end.
2. An imperfect finish still feels good.
This is one of the most powerful lessons of the book. We think if things don’t work out perfectly, it will derail everything. We won’t feel accomplished. We won’t find the joy we thought we would at the end of the goal. But fighting for a finish, whether it’s perfect or not, is worth celebrating. Don’t let perfectionism tell you otherwise!
[bctt tweet="Fighting for a finish, whether it’s perfect or not, is worth celebrating. Don’t let perfectionism tell you otherwise!" username="dukematlock"]
“Will the outcome be different from your vision? Yes. I can’t lie to you this late in the book. But you’ll never know the unbelievable joy of keeping a promise to yourself unless you finish. That’s what we’re doing, keeping a commitment to ourselves and knowing we’ve fulfilled it when we finish.” (pg. 185)
WEEK 5 LEADERSHIP CHALLENGE: Identify which “final fears” are keeping you from finishing your goals.Who can you call to help you destroy perfectionism’s last attempt to convince you to quit? Give them a call after you write down your final fears. Let them know how you’re feeling and see what they have to say about your situation.
FINISHING ‘FINISH’That’s all we have for our first-ever New Year’s Book Club! I hope you learned something new about yourself, your motivations, and your goals. If you want to go through the book again (or for the first time), our free book club resources are still available for you here. I encourage you as you finish this series to share any big takeaways you had throughout the book with a friend who can keep you accountable as you strive to accomplish your goals this year. If you want to share those takeaways with me and my team, just use the hashtags #ILIreads and #ILIFinish to interact with us on social media!
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