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Know When to Stop

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Posted 12 December 2014 by Chris FarmerChris Farmer

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Know When to Stop

One of the most important things we all should learn to do is to: Know when to stop.

NOT knowing when to stop is the cause of very many failures.

In history, there are very many famous examples of when NOT knowing when to stop, caused the person to carry on too far, and that lead to their ultimate failure.

For example:

  • Napoleon Bonaparte did not know when to stop and that lead to his military defeat.
  • Margaret Thatcher did not know when to stop and that lead to her political defeat.

In both cases, they did not know when to stop; so they went too far; and were ultimately, stopped by others.

You too need to know went to stop...

  • You need to know went to stop...Waiting for things to change.
  • You need to know went to stop.... Talking too much.
  • Eating too much.
  • Working too much.
  • Resting too much.

1. You need to know went to stop... waiting for things to change

Many people are holding off taking action: they are waiting for circumstances to be more favourable.

John says, "Before I make the changes, I need to make, I want to get Christmas out of the way. But then, there is New Year; so maybe, I'll start next year. But then, I need to take into account that there is a general election in the spring and there might be a change of government; so maybe I had better wait until after the general election before I really, swing into action..."

My point is this; Don't wait for change. Instead, "Do what you can, with what you have, where you are"; (which is a good quote from Theodore Roosevelt).

Don't wait for change. Instead, be the agent of change.

2. You need to know went to stop... talking too much

Too many people talk too much and listen too little.

Let me ask you a question: Have you ever said too much in an argument with a loved one, or at work with a colleague, have you ever lost your cool, and said something that made the situation worse?

Most of us have had experience of saying the wrong thing, at the wrong time. You may need to learn when to stop talking and instead, to listen.

3. Eating too much

We are all encouraged to over eat. Advertisements show us what delicious foods are available. There are cakes and chocolate, and biscuits and crisps everywhere we go. And cookery shows on TV and celebrity chefs, and Christmas celebrations and fast food outlets everywhere.

If you are not fully conscious of how much you consume, then the chances are that you will consume too much. As a nation we are overweight.

According to the Lancet medical journal; in the UK, 67% of men and 57% of women are either overweight or obese. And more than a quarter of children are overweight or obese.

You need to be aware of your intake and know when to stop eating.

4. You need to know went to stop... working

Many people work hard and long. They get up early and they stay up late. This is, in many respects, very good and admirable; but I want to draw your attention to the fact that it is unsustainable over the long stretch.

You need to recuperate and recover. If you keep taking out from your physical and mental energy, but don't build in enough rest periods that will allow for adequate recovery and growth, then you will eventually hit burn out, and will suffer negative consequences.

You need to know when to stop working and take a rest.

5. You need to know went to stop... resting

The same point applies on the other side too. You need to know when to stop resting and get back to work.

Yes. You do need a tea break, but your tea break is 15 minutes long, not 35 minutes. You do need a lunch break; but your lunch break is 45 minutes; not 90 minutes. You do need to chat to colleagues about their kids, but not for too long.

You need to say to yourself and others, "Let us get back to work!"

You need to know when you have had enough rest, sufficient for recuperation and growth, and when it is time to go back to work.

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