Jack, is what you might describe as a good ol’ boy. He’s been fixin’ our family’s vehicles for longer than I can remember. The other night I had him, along with my dad, over for dinner and we were talking about starting businesses. He asked me about how mine was going. I started to tell him about the projects I was most excited about and he threw up his hands.

“I don’t pretend to understand all that, but it seems to me you have a lot of ideas.” He then told me about the first gas station he owned way back in 1973 somewhere off Seminary Road. He’d been in business a few months and one day onto his lot walked a man he recognized as the owner of a dozen or so local gas stations.

The man turned to Jack and said, “I can see your struggling, son.”

“How’s that?” Jack asked because, in fact, he was struggling to make ends meet month to month, and on top of that he was working twelve hours or more day 7-days a week.

“Look at this lot, you have way too many vehicles.” This was true as Jack had no problem getting work with his reputation. “What you need to do is fix the ones you can first, get ‘em off your lot, get paid, and clear the rest.”

In short, it’s not about the amount of work you can bring in it’s about the work that you can finish. (I’d also add it’s a bit about prioritization, too.)

I thought about Neil Gaiman, Jen Sincero, Seth Godin and so many other ways that they universe has said the same thing.

“Finishing” is itself a skill, especially crossing the finish line with your head held high; and like all skills, I believe it is one we develop over time with deliberate practice.

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