It’s Not How You Start but How You Finish!

“An elderly carpenter was ready to retire. He told his employer/contractor of his plans to leave the house building business and live a more leisurely life with his wife enjoying his extended family. He would miss the pay check, but he needed to retire. They could get by.

The contractor was sorry to see his good worker go and asked if he could build just one more house as a personal favour. The carpenter said yes, but in time it was easy to see that his heart was not in his work. He resorted to shoddy workmanship and used inferior materials. It was an unfortunate way to end his career.

What a shock

When the carpenter finished his work and the builder came to inspect the house, the contractor handed the front-door key to the carpenter. “This is your house,” he said, “my gift to you.”

What a shock! What a shame! If he had only known he was building his own house, he would have done it all so differently. Now he had to live in the home he had built none too well.”

He let his standards slip

What a shame that this man who had obviously been a good worker as his boss was sad to see him go, let his standards slip at the very end. He wanted to leave and didn’t really want to build this last house but his bossed asked him to, so he did so reluctantly.

Because he let things slip at the very end he now had to live in a shoddily build house that he was happy to build thinking someone else would be living there. Not for one moment did he imagine it would be himself and his wife.

Finish well

In my Masterclasses and talks I like to finish with the phrase ‘It’s not how you start in life which counts but how you finish.’ People don’t remember the early parts of your life as much as they do the latter years. I am determined to finish my life well so that I don’t have any regrets.

I have read many articles on people who appear to have everything but are depressed or even suicidal. They have the big house, the car, the holidays, the social life but they have lost their purpose and identity in life.

Things which make you feel better

They look for something to give them the buzz they once had, and turn to drink, drugs, food, shopping, gambling, or any other stimulus to make them feel temporarily better. These are short term fixes where you need more and more to feel the same buzz, and they often lead to addiction.

It is important to have an interest or purpose in life – something which gives you a reason to get up in the morning. I get up every morning with a skip in my step because I have so many things I want to achieve before I die. I want to help the homeless, start an orphanage, travel the world speaking and running my Masterclasses with my dear wife Julie.

Don’t live half a life

I want to finish well so that I can leave this world feeling that I gave it everything I had and enjoyed the journey. I believe that when you find your passion, life is exciting and challenging, but it’s also fun.

The statistics are shocking regarding how long people live after retirement when they don’t have anything to look forward to. Those who have something to look forward to like a hobby, an interest or a cause to support, live far longer than those who don’t.

Thoughts for the week.

1. Do you have a purpose to your life?
2. If you have a job which you are not passionate about, can you find a cause you could get involved in which makes you feel good?
3. Keep your high standards to the very end – don’t slack off.
4. See what you can do this week to make someone happy.

Well that’s it for this week, have a great weekend and stay positive.

Warm regards


Off the Wall – How to Develop World Class Mental Resilience available here (Special offer. Put in code 10POUND when prompted to receive a signed copy for £10 including postage and packing – UK only)

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