Leaving it unfinished

The more web projects I work on, the more I realize that any given project can never be done. There are so many details that you can chase down (performance, SEO, accessibility, mobile compatibility, usability, semantics, etc…). So many new features you can add (frictionless sharing, integration with services, better navigation, etc.). It requires constant effort just keeping up with the ever changing industry, with new devices, formats, and technologies being supported every month. How do you do it all?

You can’t. And that’s hard for me, because I love it when things are finished.

I love finishing books. Closing the back cover. Being able to tell my friends “I read that book.” Sometimes, I’ll persist through the last few chapters of a dry or useless book, just to get the closure of having completed it (ignoring the sunk costs, of course).

I love completing a task, checking the box on my task list, and then purging it from my short term memory.

I love how my GPA and exam scores are frozen in time, unalterable. Done. Unlike my credit score, or my interest rates.

So leaving it unfinished is a skill. It’s not about being lazy. It’s about being wise and knowing where to draw the line. And like any skill, it takes practice.