Take a 5 minute look at this screencast. It documents some unfinished business which is producing a delightful tension to complete as I continue finding new ways and new things to learn this year. The video was made with SnagIt, for which use I was recently “certified.” Forgive the occasional snafus.
Tonight with considerable amusement and some embarrassment, I was exploring some of the unfinished “business” I left behind when I retired. I often would start something and then get distracted from its completion, rationalizing that I could always come back to it when time allowed – even if it had to wait until I retired.
How naive I was about retirement giving one more time!
Here is a piece I wrote in November 21, 2009, about the tension to complete unfinished tasks.
I was first introduced to the Zeigarnik effect (people typically recalling interrupted tasks better than their recalling completed ones) by my first Oberlin College Introductory Psychology professor, Celeste McCollough. My participation in her visual perception studies of the “McCollough effect” formally introduced me to the science of psychology. I remember being both amused and fascinated by Professor McCollough’s sharing an anecdote that she intentionally used the Zeigarnik phenomenon as a motivator for her to resume working on manuscripts that she was writing for publication.
As I am winding up—or is it winding down—my academic career I find that there is so much unfinished business and so many interrupted tasks in need of completion. This Zeigarnik tension need not be aversive. Still, there is so much to learn and I am fascinated by the many new ways of learning.