One and Done

You’ve heard it before.

Get ‘er done!

Finish the drill.

I saw a newsletter that I follow talk about what it was like to get to the end of a project, to be done, to be finished. It was touted as a very good thing to finally get to the end of a task list or a punch sheet or an outline for a project that was started with the idea of finishing in mind.

I got to thinking about life in general and my life in specific, in the context of finishing things.

Now, I keep lists with the best of them. I use Field Notes notebooks, notepads, note taking template sheets and all manner of things that help me keep track and organize the many things that happen in my life. Of course there is the electronic aspect of that task as well, with calendars and to do lists and email reminders and the like. I’l bet that each of you also has his or her own way of organizing things and planning and executing tasks so that projects may be brought to their logical conclusions.

What I thought about was not how I organize to complete, but how I plan to keep learning and doing and experiencing life flexibly, with the goal to never finish that task, at least not in the near future.

I am learning more every day of my adult life about how much I do not know. I’m made aware time and time again of my shortcomings, but I’m also reminded of my strengths and my talents as well. I am participating in a longterm project which is my own life. As long as I keep learning and experiencing and growing, that project will be active and ongoing, and it will be designed not to end, but to continue to feed upon itself and change in a positive way.

If I stop doing those things, that is, if I stop learning and moving and going and feeling and risking, my life will gradually wind down.

In sports, one and done means that you win one game, as in the playoffs, but then you lose the next one and you’re out.

In life, thank goodness, that rule does not apply. Win one, lose one, learn from it, and win another one down the road. Lose a few more, but stay in the game and come back to win again.

One of these days, I will cease to move forward. I will cease to grow, to experience and to live. That will be the time when I can, with no reservations at all, put down my papers and pens and pads, and schedules and project plans and let it all go. That is when I will have earned a long rest.

For now, I hope that time is very far away.

I’m not quite ready for one and done.

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