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Be a Quitter

“Quitting is never an option on the road to success. Find the way forward.”


“Things can always get worse, but only quitters quit!”

Nina Sakura, Ultra Maniac

“You’re going to find the people that make it work NEVER quit, quitting is NOT an option.”

Bob Proctor

“It was practically un-American to not set goals and then do everything you could, everything, to reach them. Quitting-it was a dirty word…”

Deb Caletti, The Six Rules of Maybe

There’s an unspoken mantra in American society that if you’re a quitter, you suck.

Ergo, having to quit or admit defeat should never be on the table, under any circumstances. And if you do, you’re a bad businessperson, athlete, employee, employer, or whatever role you play in the world.

But is this really the case?

The Benefits of Quitting

On December 15, 2015, I decided to permanently end my 20-year relationship with cigarettes. I’ve never touched one since and, outside of marrying my wife and raising two children, it was the best decision of my life.

Now, the people who wrote those words were almost certainly not talking about quitting cigarettes or other bad habits, for that matter.

But, it got me to thinking: why does American society put so much emphasis on not quitting, and never giving up? After all, there are plenty of instances where quitting is the right option, depending on your perspective:

  • Quit beating yourself up and hating on others.
  • Quit codependent relationships.
  • Quit spending so much time on social media.
  • Take ownership and quit deflecting your problems onto others.
  • Quit indulging in fantasies about how life should be. Focus on what’s in front of you.
  • Quit hanging out with people that no longer share your best interests.
  • Quit showing people anything other than your genuine, compassionate self.

If you decide to take your happiness into your own hands, quitting can deliver some profound benefits, including:

  • Making us stronger
  • Helping us learn from our mistakes
  • Giving us the opportunity to try again
  • Helping us better understand our thresholds
  • Allowing us to reexamine our goals
  • Helping us hone our passions
  • Helping squelch our ego’s desires

The Bottom Line About Quitting

No matter the circumstances, the act of quitting takes courage and grit, regardless of what society might allude.

When you quit things that no longer serve you, you also move forward in your maturity, helping you make better decisions down the line—including whether or not you should quit again.

So, next time the option of quitting arises, don’t have a knee-jerk negative reaction.

Instead, remain mindful, compassionate, and fearless, and you might be surprised where quitting takes you, including your path to a happier future.

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