A Lifestyle Lesson on Quitting & Giving Up
The majority of my goals require the long game. Marathon training. Puppy training. Eleven years to get Dr. in front of my name.
And of course, I’ve been wrapped up in, graced by, and sucked into a very important research study for the past 16 years of my life.
Along the way, I’ve been guided to do some very difficult things that I don’t always want to do. Separate from people. Relocate. Reapply. Try and try and try again.
The most important skill I’ve learned to do along the way is to just keep going.
Even when there’s nothing to show for my effort, even when what I’m doing denies logic and rationality, and even when it means differentiating myself from people I know and I love.
If my life didn’t feel divinely guided and if I hadn’t been dreaming the same damn dream since childhood, I likely would have stopped working toward it a long time ago.
There have been many times over the course of many years, when I’ve wanted to throw in the towel and just do what everyone else is doing – desperately wanting to move along the well-beaten path.
But I don’t – I just keeping trudging along through the uncharted jungle hoping that some people will follow along.
Admittedly, there are many times when I push too hard and keep my head up when I need to just let it rest. I try to be a bull instead of the butterfly that I really am.
Whenever I do, I end up miserable in my mind and my body forces a mini-depression upon my cells, forcing me to stay in bed until I’ve rested enough to reignite the inspiration required to move forward for the day.
It's in these moments that I’m reminded of the most important practices in maintaining motivation: constantly quit and give up every day.
Our culture gives quitting a bad reputation.
It’s seen as some sort of defeat or evidence of weak character. Instead, we are rewarded for bulldozing through our boundaries and celebrated for living on cortisol.
Winners never quit! Quitters never win!
No wonder why we’re so sick.
Giving up is treated along the same lines. It’s something that triggers sorrow and shame, embarrassment that we couldn’t achieve something all by our ourselves.
But in my experience, quitting and giving up are two of the fastest ways to get back on track when we’re feeling defeated, weak, or sorrowful. In fact, I would go as far to say that quitting constantly and giving up every day are the two most important practices for maintaining long-term motivation.
From Latin: quies (quiet), quiescere (be still), quit (set free)
Middle English (in the sense ‘set free’): from Old French quiter (verb), quite (adjective), from Latin quietus, past participle of quiescere ‘be still’, from quies ‘quiet’.
To quit literally means to get quiet, be still, and set yourself free. It doesn’t say anything about walking away from what’s most important.
"Give up" is almost a word-for-word translation of surrender
(sur = over/above/up + render = to give, present)
Giving up is an act of faith and surrender. Again, no indication of walking away from what you want.
Quitting and giving up do not necessarily mean walking away from something meaningful. Instead, they are simply acknowledgements of physical limitations and an admission that certain parts of our lives are better served by parts of us that are ethereal, limitless, and divine.
This is the magic of the sixth dimension, the Social Dimension – the high heart chakra where we dance between the physical magic of FORCE and the ethereal magic of FAITH.
FORCE is necessary to make the molecules that create our physical experience. But if we ever hope to create something truly new in our lives, that experience doesn’t come from the realms of physicality.
All spontaneous creation originates from the limitless potential of the divine.
We don’t bring it to life through FORCE. We bring it to life through FAITH.
When we’ve done all we can do, said all there is to said, and have become who we need to be, there is nothing more our bodies have to contribute to the process of creation.
The next step is to quit – to get quiet, be still, and set the situation free – and to give up – to surrender the situation up to the parts of ourselves with access to the infinite, limitless resources of the ether.
This is how creation works. There is literally no other way.
I forget to quit all the time. 🙄
It usually isn’t until I’m wallowing in bed, dreading my entire life that I realize I’ve been pushing myself too far, ignoring the limitations I have here in the realm of the five senses, and obsessing over circumstances I can’t control.
It’s on those mornings that I quit, give up, and invite my Frenchie for a few more moments of cuddling under the covers. Sometimes it’s a peaceful surrender and I enjoy it.
Other times, it’s dramatic as all hell.
I’m not doing this anymore! I’m a failure. I have nothing to show for my work anyway. Nothing is ever going to change. I’m always going to be stuck exactly where I am, so what the eff is the point anyway?!
Yes, that level of drama. 😳
I used to believe those messages when they ran through my mind and get sucked it despair for that particular day and beyond.
But now I understand what all that drama is trying to do.
Those words aren’t truth, but they are trying to manipulate me to stay put.
So I do what they want without actually believing what they say.
These moments of quitting and giving up are the only moments when the divine can do its due diligence anyway.
If I hold onto the energy and information of the task at hand and continue to ruminate over it, worry about it, and FORCE it into fruition, it will literally never move up into the realms of magic and spontaneous miracles. It stays stuck down here.
I have to give it up to the higher parts of myself so that I can eventually get it back in the form it’s meant to be.
I mean, I can spend all kinds of time putting together the best pizza ever, rolling out the perfect dough, adding all the best organic toppings, but ruminating, worrying, and FORCING it to be cooked isn’t going to cut it.
I gotta give it up and put it in the damn oven.
(Now I want pizza). 🍕
The divine is the oven for miracles.
Once your recipe is done, you’ve gotta give it up to the fire and give it time to cook. Otherwise, you’re always going to be stuck with perfect but inedible pizza dough.
Give up every day.
It’s literally the way creation works.
MAGIC MANTRA: I give it all up.