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Book Review: Necessary Endings

Necessary Endings

Necessary Endings: The Employees, Businesses, and Relationships That all of us Have to Give up in Order to Move Forward.
Dr. Henry Cloud
HarperBusiness; $25.99


As I started thinking about changes I wanted to make in my business, I knew it would involve “endings,” and I was not sure how comfortable I was with that. I found the help I needed in Necessary Endings by Dr Henry Cloud. Dr Cloud talks about necessary endings being of three types and compares them to pruning rose bushes. The first type of pruning is because you have more buds than the plant can sustain, so you prune some of your buds so the bush can thrive. You prune the good to keep the best. The second type of pruning is with sick or diseased branches that you finally realize will not recover even with more help. The third type of pruning is with dead branches and buds that are just taking up space. What really hit me was when he defined the pruning moment as “that clarity of enlightenment when we become responsible for making the decision to own the vision or not. If we own it, we have to prune. If we don’t, we have decided to own the other vision, the one we called average. It is a moment of truth that we encounter almost every day in many, many decisions.” That said, it is still not easy to prune, even if we want more than average. It may bring up anxiety over making changes — or endings. It is not always easy deciding if something is worth fixing or not, and how long you hold out hope. You also have to deal with the grief of some kinds of endings. Early on in the book, the author noted the need to decide between good and best and that this is difficult for creative people, causing them to have a lack of focus. Creative people often think all ideas are equal, trying to keep them all alive and ending up with a “to-do pile” rather than a list. I found it valuable, and my copy is filled with lots of underlines and a page of extra notes.

You can look for the book at your favorite quilt shop or book retailer. Here is the link to Amazon if you would like to learn more about the book.

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