On Finishing Well

We always hear the phrase “finish strong.” What about “finish well”?

I can’t remember where I read it, but someone was talking about the importance of finishing well. At the time, I believed that I understood what he meant, but I don’t think the understanding truly came until a couple days ago.

For the past six weeks, I have been spending a good chunk of my time in an into to Python class to satisfy a GE at BU. I thought that programming would be a bit easier than sitting in Statistics or Calculus…but let’s just say I may have fared the same if I had taken the Calc class. Upon signing up, I had no idea that it would be so hard. It was an intro class, after all.

Actually, I was so wrong. At about the third or fourth week, I started to flounder. I did horribly on the midterm. And, when I say horribly, I’m not talking about the dramatic Asian I got an A- horribly. I straight-up failed the test. Trust me when I say, I’ve never done so horribly in my life.

The course only became more difficult from there. By the end of the course, with the final exam looming, I was quite tempted to throw the towel on it all. I knew that obtaining my desired grade was next to impossible. For a few hours, I thought really hard about just quitting.

Then, I remembered. Finish well. Mom, I said. I don’t even know what that means. Obviously, I’m not going to do well in this course. I’m not going to finish strong. I may not even pass. How can I finish well when it’s going to end badly?

You didn’t give up, she replied. That’s when I understood what it meant to finish well. At times in our lives, we may not be facing the desired outcome. But the important thing is not to have things turn out great all the time. It’s about fighting until the end. Not throwing the towel on it. Not giving up. Don’t give up, friends.

(I wrote another article about my experience with Python here. This article will also appear on the same site!)

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