I know I talk a lot about not giving up, but let me be clear about one thing - quitting is sometimes the best thing you can do.
The when and how of quitting:
I think you should consider quitting anything that's not in line with the person you want to become or the outcomes you care to attain. In other words, quit the things that aren’t serving your goals and desires. Quit things that are outside of what you value.
Ask yourself: is this thing I am doing in line with who I want to be and what I want to create? Does it serve the person I’m trying to be? If it’s not - ask yourself why you’re doing it? To what end?
For me, there are several things I won’t ever quit:
- I will never quit my workout habit because it gives me SO much - happiness, strength, health; relief from sadness, constipation and self-hatred; better sleep, better sex, and yes - better fitting jeans, too.
- I will NEVER quit choosing the best food options I have available to me because I know what if feels like to eat like shit, then feel like shit as a result. I hate that feeling, so I’d rather eat kale than burgers. You live and learn.
- I will suck it up and do what I need to do to continue to build my health and fitness empire because I believe in all the things I just mentioned when it comes to food and exercise, but even more, I think women need more examples of what a healthy body can be like at age 45, 47, 52 and 65.
- I will never stop growing, learning, developing my craft and pushing myself to do uncomfortable things because I never want to be stagnant. Stagnant is a very bad place for me (again, I’ve learned that the hard way).
- I will never stop investing in my most important relationships because I think having deep connections and love is the core of what makes me feel happy and alive.
If you can list things like this, you’ll never quit them because they are part of your purpose and provide meaning to you.
To be clear, I’m also not suggesting you should quit things just because they are hard. You don’t quit things because they’re hard, you quit things that don’t really mean that much to you, or that you haven’t yet admitted to yourself that they mean something. There’s a difference here.
For example, working on my business is hard at times, and in the past, I’ve almost quit (before I realized how much meaning it had for me), then I sucked it up and kept going. Exercising to achieve the body and health that I want is brutal, and sometimes I have to drag myself into a workout, but it’s meaningful, so I do it.
So what should you give up?
Ask yourself, what am I doing that is:
- Not in line with who I want to be.
- Has no true meaning in my life.
- Strictly out of obligation.
Once you’ve found those things, mark them with a big fat no, and stop doing them, now. That may require some difficult conversations, life changes or canceled commitments, but if you don't say no to the things that aren’t meaningful to you, then you’re saying no to the things that are.
Pro Tip: If you want more coaching around what you should give up versus what should you double down on, consider reading the book Essentialism, by Greg McKeown. It's one of the best books I've ever read and a game-changing perspective on evaluating what's important and what's not.