Dr. Cloud is a clinical psychologist who references his research and experiences in Necessary Endings to help people with endings. Quick take, he packs a mountain of information in this book. One must be ready to digest every paragraph, if you skim you will miss a lot. Aside from it’s weighty content, here are three takeaways from an average reader. Firstly, endings bring hope.
Endings Bring Hope
For instance, the CEO has tried to get the individual to change. The sales of the product never break even for a year. Similarly, a person in the relationship keeps repeating the same mistakes. These situations seem hopeless, and that’s a good thing. It means that the actions up until now have seen no change in behavior so we must change our actions to encourage different behavior. This ending of what we did do brings us hope for change in the future. Even though we were hopeless before, the ending (firing, discontinue the product, clear boundary or separation) brings change.
This change is a good thing. The CEO tried to get that person to improve their behavior but that person stayed the same. The CEO wasn’t caught up with the same repeat conversations. The product is selling for a whole year (or whatever amount of time could be afforded) to many different markets but never turns a profit. The company tried multiple avenues but the focus is better spent on something new or something known. So, instead of feeling hopeless, you embrace the change. The chapter finishes. Now we can move on to a new venture. However, what if some resist the change?
Standards Enforce Endings
Standards are the answer to the resisted change. The ending must come so the standard lets everyone know when and why the change will happen. If you do not perform or improve to this level in a certain amount of time, you will be reassigned to a new position. Assuming that the product cannot turn a profit by the end of the next quarter, therefore it will be discontinued. If you do not stop that bad behavior, I’m leaving this house and living elsewhere. The standard enforces the change. The CEO, product team or spouse is not the ‘bad guy.’ Everyone is simply abiding by the standard and changing appropriately.
Necessary Endings Summary
There is a lot to unpack in Necessary Endings. I recommend this book. However, there is quite the depth of content, which I attribute to the author’s clinical phycologist background. I prescribe a quiet room to digest the subject matter and to take some notes.
Check out my previous blog post here.
You can find yourself a copy of Necessary Endings here.
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God bless you!