Completing a Task

Completing a Task

Do you find you never quite finish a project or a task?

We start something and often when we are nearly done we stop and decide this will do. This also applies to household tasks as we often stop before the task is complete.  So how can we change our behaviour?

Not completing a task can be for several reasons, for example you may run out of steam, however, more often than not the reason why we stop is because we don't have a clear enough end goal in mind.  For example, when doing the washing you may think the end goal is when the washing has been put in the machine, instead of thinking in terms of when it has dried, been folded and put away.  Another example is food shopping; the task isn't completed until all the groceries have been put away.

Some people naturally complete tasks right through to the end but most of us don't have this natural ability and so have to learn strategies to enable us to do that. Some tasks have a straight forward and obvious end goal.  For example, if you are going to sweep the path then it's pretty obvious that the end is when you've swept up and put the dust and rubbish into the bin.  But if you are returning from holiday you may not automatically think of the end goal as being after you've emptied the suitcase, put the dirty washing into the basket and put everything else away, including the suitcase.

It takes time to create a new routine and make it automatic and one way of doing this is by visualising the end goal or writing it down if this works better for you.  Once you have the end goal in mind you have more motivation to complete the task. 

Jane Fern