Is quitting always a bad thing? Does it mean you’ve given up? And is giving up bad?
Quitting on My Mind
I ask these questions because they’re ones I’ve been asking myself lately.
I’m currently in the process of working on launching a freelance writing business. I have, for the past five plus years, been building and running a fitness business. Maybe you’re even aware of it — Terri Cruce Fitness.
And lately I’ve been struggling with this whole quitter question. Where should I best focus my energies? What should go on the back burner, what should be moved front and center and what really needs to be removed altogether?
I decided to share all of this with you because maybe you’re now facing, or have in the past faced, the same struggles. Maybe I can help you. And hey, maybe you can help me.
Discovering What I Love Doing
One of the reasons, but certainly not the only one, that I’m struggling right now is because as I move further and further into my writing, I’m realizing that my interest in running the fitness business is waning.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m still very dedicated to my own health and fitness, and I still work with many people who have hitched their wagon to me as a fitness coach. I will continue to focus on fitness in my life. It’s an important part of my quality of life. And I’ll also continue to support those I’m currently helping with their fitness goals. And it’s possible that I’ll find a way to manage both businesses. So maybe quitting isn’t the right term for it, but in many ways it feels like it is.
But here’s the dilemma. I have two Facebook pages. I have two websites. I’m being pulled in multiple directions as I try to juggle both efforts. And in the process, I’m discovering what I enjoy doing and what feels like a chore. I’m slowly going through a pruning process, much like a well-tended rosebush. What gets to stay and what must be pruned? That is the question.
And my struggle is that I’ve never considered myself a quitter. And does walking away, if that’s what I ultimately decide to do, from the fitness business, or even just scaling back, make me one? Am I fooling myself or am I rediscovering my passion?
We Can Do What We Set Our Minds To — IF We Want To
We hear so often that we can have everything we want if we’re willing to work hard enough for it. Nothing is beyond your ability, assuming you want it badly enough. And if you stop pushing yourself, or you’re not where you want to be, you’re either doing something wrong or you’re not trying hard enough.
Okay. The doing something wrong part I’ll buy. Every effort we make toward our stated goals is bound to be a learning process, and failure is all part of our ultimate success.
But not trying hard enough? That one is where the guilt can set in.
But I believe there is a third possibility and I also believe that this one trumps all the others.
The Power of Desire
How badly do you want it? And how do you know for sure when you really want something versus believing you do? And there is a difference. And that difference is crucial to finding your direction.
And I’ll be very honest. Many people will try and plant the guilt seed into you by making you feel like there must be something wrong with you if you don’t want what they want. That you are somehow lacking if you’re not willing to put the effort into the same things they are. They point at their success and proclaim, “All this can be yours if you just work hard enough, stay consistent and never give up!”
And sometimes it’s true. Well, in fact, maybe it always is. But the key element that must be in the mix is desire.
If desire isn’t there, you won’t do it. End of story.
Some Tips to Help You Identify Your Desire
So how do you know if you’re quitting or simply moving in a direction that is a better fit? How can you tell the difference? Well, I have some thoughts on that. Here are some scenarios to consider:
- You love where and how you’re spending your time. Even in the most difficult of times, you still can’t imagine doing anything else. This is a sign you’re in the right place, doing the right thing.
- When you’re engaged in your daily activities, you’re totally immersed in them. Time passes too quickly. You’re not bored. You feel energized.
- You have trouble making yourself do activities you know you must do. You may even dread it. You don’t feel happy and time moves at a snail’s pace. This is a big red flag that you need to make a change.
- You couldn’t care less that others are succeeding and moving forward doing what you’re attempting to do. Not even a blip of envy. Big sign that you aren’t engaged in what you’re doing and don’t really want to do it. Not only is it not enriching your life, it’s actually draining your enthusiasm. Time to make a change.
These are just a few things that came to me with little thought. I’m sure there are others.
But the point is that if you don’t want to do something, you’re only going to be able to make yourself do it for so long. Especially if you’re not required to, as we are in a corporate job. In that case, we may not like it, but we do it or face the consequences.
But if that’s how you feel about your job, you may need to do some soul searching and figure out what you should really be doing and start taking steps to move in that direction.
Do What Matters Most to You
We all want to spend our days doing what matters most to us. Doing what makes us feel alive. Doing what we love to do.
And the beauty of owning your own business is that you really do have the opportunity to make that choice.
But you also need to be aware of the warning signs that a pruning is in order. That you either need to quit what you’re doing completely or make cuts.
And I’m slowly coming to the realization that for me, moving away from a fitness business into a writing business is the best direction. It’s not easy because I’ve invested over five years into my fitness business. I’ve made great friends and learned tons of valuable lessons.
But I need to remind myself that great friendships only end if they’re no longer great and for every path we chose not to take, there is another one that will take us where we need to go.
I love to write. I’ve wanted to start my own writing business for a long time, but have been afraid I couldn’t make it work.
Fear, that most paralyzing of emotions, gets in the way of so much. Too much.
It’s time to change direction, take what I learned building a fitness business and use it to build a writing business. And continue to grow and to thrive.
Tell Me Your Story
Are you at a similar crossroads in your life? Have you been in the past? How did you deal with it? What choices did you make?
And most important of all, were you able to shut out the noise of doubt both within yourself as well as expressed by others?
Were you able to go for what matters most to you?
I’d love to hear your story. I hope you’ll post it in the comments below. I believe we all have so much to offer and the best way to do that is to share.
Go after what you want. Forget what others think. Find your own passion.
And make your own rich life.
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