That is worth thinking about. But how about the other side of the coin? How do you know when to quit?
Last week on the Apprentice, Michelle quit. Not surprisingly, the Donald thought it was a bad idea. Here is what he had to say:
Doesn't that make you a quitter? Doesn't that make you a loser? You are making a very big mistake. When you look back on our life, you will not be proud. When I speak, I tell people, "Never ever give up. Never quit. You can never be successful if you quit."I would imagine that most of my blog readers make their decisions very differently from Donald Trump. Who we are is more important than what people think about us. Does quitting make you a loser by default? My boardroom speech, or the speech that I give when someone hires me to give advice would be a little different than his.
Sometimes it's okay to quit. Sometimes stepping down isn't forfeiting success--it's making the way for a new opportunity in which you can succeed. Giving in isn't the same as giving up.What is it that gives you a lump in your stomach each time that you think about it or have to do it? Is it something from which you can resign? I'm not only including something you think that you could quit, but anything you are able to quit. For example: The thought of going to sleep at night fills you with dread, because you know that the baby who has decided not to sleep will inevitably destroy your sleep. You can't quit motherhood. Sorry. Unless there are extreme circumstances of abuse, I would put your marriage into the same category.
But there are some things that our internal voice keeps telling us, "You've always done this. It's who you are. You're good at it. It's perfect for you." If each time you drive to work (and even when you are at home) you worry about how disastrous your day will be, that is something you can quit. No matter that you are the sole breadwinner (you might want to find another job first), or that the job is "just perfect," because the salary is good, the hours are good, it's an easy commute. . . .Things can look good on paper, but still not be good. Katherine at Raising Five shared her own gut-wrenching decision here. She made some excellent points, so instead of repeating them, I will link to her thoughts on her Homeschooling Burnout.
I've been there. I've quit jobs, I've dropped classes, I've scaled back hobbies, I've restructured friendships. After I made the hard choice to quit, I have almost always felt that pit in my stomach melt away. I didn't feel like a loser. I felt as if I had won myself back.
Some signs that it might be time to quit (a relationship, a job, a ministry, a committee):
- You worry about it--a LOT. While you are there, when you get home, and any time you know that you are going to be there.
- While you are there, you are conflicted. You feel like you are doing things that you shouldn't be doing or it's causing you to react in ways that make you uncomfortable.
- You have tried to change the situation to no avail.
- You begin to feel as if there is no hope for change at all, and this hopelessness leaks into other areas of your life, leaving you feeling defeated in general.