I decided over 40 years ago that I would make it my life’s work to shed light on the nearly universal problem of poor follow through. Well, I’m still at it. And although I’ve learned a ton about what it really takes to follow through, I remain as perplexed as ever about one thing: People – and society as a whole – don’t take following through as seriously as they should.
Poor follow through is no joke
Please do me a favor. Read this brief excerpt from the introduction to the book, Following Through, or if you’d prefer, take just 5 minutes to listen to the entire introduction (below). I think you’ll then understand why I’m so troubled by society’s failure to give this topic as much attention as it truly deserves.
Yes, we may joke about it, but poor follow through is no laughing matter.
The high cost of poor follow through
Poor follow through can do more than wreak havoc on our health. It prevents us from achieving personal, financial, and career goals that should be well within our reach. It can damage our relationships, produce stress, and set the stage for regrets. It can rob us of credibility, self-esteem, and peace of mind. And it can deprive us, our families, our businesses, and our communities of the full benefit of our intelligence, talent, imagination, and hard work.
Still crazy after all these years
So, honestly, is it any wonder that it still drives me crazy that we don’t take following through more seriously? In fact, the more I’ve learned about the simple things people can do to follow through better, the more maddening it is to see people continue to put up with — and pay dearly for– poor follow through.