Almost There

“Almost there” is a dangerous place to be in a project. It is the time when the project isn’t quite complete, but you can see the true potential of your work. The pitfalls of “almost there” are threefold:

  1. When the end is in sight, we might let up on the intensity of our effort. What we expected to be a short sprint to the finish line can become a meandering walk that sometimes doesn’t even finish the race. 
  2. The last part of the journey can be the hardest. In the same way that the last mile of a marathon is harder than the first, our last project leg can be more difficult. The fatigue that we feel from doing the work and focusing on the vision intently starts to wear on us. Seth Godin refers to this as the dip. The danger is that you stop to rest during this dip, and you never get back up to finish the race. 
  3.  You may start celebrating success that you haven’t achieved. You may have the perfect finished product in mind, and you may see that you will deliver it, but until your “customer” can feel the benefit from the project, your success is still abstract. 

Pay attention to the “almost there” trap. Keep the intensity of your work up throughout the project and celebrate once you truly arrive at your destination.