It is 100% easier to do nothing than it is to do something. It's also easier to start something than it is to keep going. When you begin the race and the adrenaline is pumping it's a blast coming right out of the gate. But what happens when the crowd tapers off, some pain sets in, and fatigue is apparent. This is where true character is developed. So what can you do when you get to that place and you want to quit? Here's some thoughts to get a new jumpstart!
1 - Remember Why You Started.
Why did you choose this career path in the first place? Chances are it was to make a difference in yourself or in the world. Something this important isn't something that we just throw in the towel on a whim. So do yourself a favor and take yourself back to that place where it all began.
Granted, there are probably a lot of changes that have happened between then and now. Maybe a change does need to be made. Certainly there are situations that become irreparable. Remembering why you started down this path may help you see that you cannot achieve what you initially set out to do if you remain in your current position.
2 - Reinvest In The Process.
When I decided to begin running and training for a half-marathon my first step was to pay the registration fee. This was my initial investment. Next, I went out and bought some new running shoes...investment. I remember a friend asking me, "Are you really going to run a half-marathon?" I said, "Yeah...I'm invested at this point!"
My physical training process has had peaks and valleys, but I've found a renewed motivation when I decided to re-invest in the process.
What new tool can you get to ignite some excitement in the process? Admittedly, this is a short-term payoff, as new things fade quickly. However, by re-investing you are subconsciously reminding yourself that this process is important and you will do what it takes to keep going.
3 - Do The Next Right Thing.
This is one of the mantras for anyone who is trying to overcome an addiction. Failure to overcome can breed more failure. The mantra is a reminder that the next beginning is as close as your next choice. So, do the next right thing. When you feel like giving up, hit the zoom in button and look at the next couple of hours or the next couple of days.
Create some short-term goals to help you start moving again. Don't worry about the finish line, worry about the next line and get started again.
4 - Invite Fresh Eyes To Evaluate.
If you're experiencing the desire to quit because you keep finding yourself running into dead ends it could be time to get others involved. Hear this...there is nothing wrong with seeking someone out who can objectively help you evaluate things with fresh eyes.
The key word in this is objective. This shouldn't be someone who isn't just going to tell you want you want to hear. At the same time, this shouldn't be someone who is just going to beat you down.
Fresh eyes help us see things that we may have become oblivious to us. Fresh eyes encourage us to explore solutions and ways forward that we wouldn't have otherwise seen ourselves. The best people to help give you a fresh perspective are people who ask good questions, not necessarily those people who give good advice.
5 - Encourage Someone.
Encouragement is a powerful tool that even the weakest among us can wield.
I remember someone, I believe it was Doug Fields, telling me to create a "Don't Quit" file. In the file, place every card, or email, when someone encouraged you. Then when you get to a season when your tempted to give up...you have a file to access to encourage you.
Sometimes the simplest things are the most profound. I know that when I want to give up, the only thing that I wish someone would do for me is encourage me. So, be proactive in seeking someone to encourage. A little bit, goes a long way here. Write a short, handwritten note and let someone know how valuable they are to you.
The words "thank you" might be the most impactful words you will speak in your entire week.
That's it...that's what I got, and I hope that this encourages you not to give up.
What helps you to get started again when you want to give up?