The Last Inch

when we add up all those inches
that’s going to make the fucking difference
between WINNING and LOSING
between LIVING and DYING.


“Almost to the finish line, time to slow it down and finish the race.” This is what we often think when we’re about to finish whatever it is we set out to accomplished. Whether it’s the last problem on a homework assignment, the last chapter to read before the book finishes, or the last bite of pizza before its done. We often think that because we’re so close and we’re almost done, that we can relax. Wrong. The last anything, is probably the hardest thing to do. As we near our personal finish lines, we need to realized that we have to finish strong.

It is often harder to finish something than start something. Starting is easy. How many times have you heard someone say they will start something? How many New Year’s resolution do people give up right away? People are constantly starting something they can’t finish. To the point that they become numb to it. And when they stop or quit, they hear some quote about how failure is okay because everyone fails at one point or another and so they go on with their lives and start something then fail something again and again in an endless cycle. Now, there is a difference between failures. If you’re trying to run a mile without stopping and you’ve failed to complete it, but try again the next day, and then next day again, until one day you’re running marathons, that’s fine. But if you failed at running, and give up, and say that “Oh I’ll do that later.” That is not okay. That is the same as not finishing. You’ve set out a goal without the intent to completing. Better to not waste time getting started in the beginning. If you set out to do something, always full ass it until it is complete.

Think about a time that you’ve told a friend or someone about something you’ve completed. Even something dumb like I finally took my car to get washed. There is a change in their eyes that they don’t even know exist. When you tell someone that you’ve actually completed something, they probably will look at you just a little different because you finished a task. Most likely, they were used to the endless cycle of failures because it is all around us. And the fact that we’ve actually accomplished something woke them from that slumber.

When you’re almost done with an assignment or task, don’t let your brain trick you to relax. Often times, the work required to complete the assignment is greater than the whole assignment itself. Our brain is naturally centered on pleasure and that sense is even greater when we’re about to complete something because it knows that once you’ve completed your task, you can indulge right away. So as you near the completion line that urge to indulge outweighs our means to complete and so we slow down and give in to that indulgence (since we’re almost there anyways). But that is how we’re constantly failing. We don’t recognize this and give in, then we end up giving up. So to fight this, we must recognize that when we’re about done, with something, we should keep at it as if we’re at the beginning of something new, because that last inch, is a new battle.

Author: Nhan Le

By way of Anaheim, CA.

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