As a kid, I tried a lot of extracurricular activities and quit those activities after a certain period of time. Some activities such as piano, I did for several years before quitting. Others, such as ballet, I quit after one year. I didn’t enjoy either one of those activities and knew that I wasn’t destined to be a professional pianist or ballerina.
It doesn’t make sense to continue to pursue something if your gut tells you that this is not right and that you need to quit as soon as possible. If you are absolutely miserable, frustrated and exhausted, then quit. At the end of the day you could be wasting precious time and energy that could be used for something better suited for you and your business.
How To Approach the Idea of Quitting
You know that saying “Quitters never win and winners never quit”? It really should be modified along the lines of “Strategic quitters win and winners strategically quit”.
When you’re trying something new, sometimes the first itch to quit can be superficial. You’re approaching a new territory and are unsure on how to approach things. You’re also unsure how things will turn out. There is a lot of uncertainty. It seems automatic to want to quit just because everything takes more effort and longer. Maybe the progress being made is little to none.
If the more you work at it, the desire to quit grows even deeper, then you have to stop and really think about it. Stop and ask yourself, is quitting the answer? Will quitting solve the problem and make the current situation better? You need to also ask yourself if continuing to pursue this job or opportunity worth it in the long run.
Are you only doing it for the sake of completion?
Do you like anything about what you are currently doing?
People tend to think that just because they’ve invested so much time and energy, even if has not given them any benefit whatsoever, they need to stick with it. They’re afraid of starting over and having to put more time and effort into something new.
It’s Okay To Quit. Really.
Yes, I am actually telling you it’s okay to quit. Just like the concept of failure, the idea of quitting tends to have a negative connotation to it, but it’s important to note that quitting does have its benefits. It enables you to have more freedom to work on other things, the things YOU want to do. That time and energy spent on something that is new, exciting and promising is far better than spending time and energy on something that is going nowhere or just chugging along. In fact that time and energy spent on the latter can be more of a time and energy suck.
This is coming from someone who has quit many jobs for various reasons – ranging from physical and mental health, stress, boredom to it just being a temporary job. I have enrolled in courses and quit soon after when I realized I couldn’t make time for it or it just wasn’t worth my time in the end. It seemed like a good idea at the time.
People tend to see themselves as failures for quitting something when it is truly the opposite. In order to keep at something, regardless of how hard and time consuming it is, you have to really love it. Passion is what fuels the grit and the determination to keep pushing through the tough times. If it isn’t there, then quitting may be your best bet because you’ll have a difficult time getting through those tough times.
Last year I started a Facebook group. I’m not even sure what my reasons were for starting one. I didn’t have much of a strategy behind it. I didn’t really promote it as much as I should have or spent as much as time creating a community. I suppose it may have been something that I thought I should try out and see what would come out of it. While there was a bit of engagement from the few members who were in it, I didn’t see much of a benefit for me, the blog, my business and the members who were in it. After a lot of thought, I decided that my efforts were better spent elsewhere. The passion to work on it just wasn’t there. A part of me did feel disappointed that it didn’t work out, but at the end of the day, I knew was the right thing to do. I knew I needed to move on.
Quitting Can Be Seen As a Positive Thing
Quitting is often associated with failure. I quit X, Y or Z and hence, I feel like a failure. Or I feel like I am failing at what I’m currently doing, so I should just quit.
We tend to think: QUITTING + FAILING = BAD
But it’s not. Not at all. As someone who can be a perfectionist, this took me a VERY LONG time (Read this: YEARS) to realize this and come to terms with accepting the fact that quitting and failing are okay.
They are important, if not crucial parts of the learning experience.
My way of thinking: Quitting is a way of saying that I need to prioritize certain things in my life. When you are quitting, you are taking charge of your life. You are reassessing the situation. Quitting something, especially something you’ve done for so long, can be a terrifying and liberating experience. Remember that there is absolutely nothing wrong with quitting- temporarily or permanently. It is ultimately up to you to decide whether or not the task at hand is worth picking up again in the future.
What have you quit lately? What were your reasons for it?