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The power of quitting

I start a hundred projects and hobbies per year and not fully go through with at least 95 of them. It’s been like that for as long as I can remember. I have been like that for, well, probably my whole life.

I started learning Spanish some years ago and now remember about three words. I bought a ukulele and am still not able to play one single song. I created a set of cards, then barely put in any effort to sell them. I started working different jobs as a student but switched more regularly than the average person for sure. And as for this blog… I would say this is about the fifth one I started.

Why don’t I go through with a lot of things? Or why do I do them ‘only’ for some days, weeks, or months? Because I get bored. Because I don’t fully ‘feel it anymore’. Because it gives me too much stress, and I put too much pressure on myself. Because I think I don’t have it in me to finish something. All reasons that make me quit what I once thought was the greatest idea. What I once thought I would absolutely LOVE and what I just HAD to do.

My response whenever I pulled the plug (whether by making a conscious decision or by simply forgetting)? Right - I blamed myself. For quitting… again. For not being able to do what I felt like others could do so easily. Or easier, at least.

As you can imagine, the blaming didn’t help one bit. It didn’t make the situation better, and it for sure didn’t make my head a nicer place to live. I’ve always learned that I had to finish things. School projects, books, puzzles, eating food that’s on the plate. I learned this from different people. From family, teachers, people on television, etc. And while I agree there’s some things that ‘just’ must be done and that you can’t always quit everything, the mindset to keep going and going and not quitting (lord forbid!) has done me more harm than good. I regret the times that I continued with something for a long time even though it was very hard for me more than the times I decided to quit (and therefore chose myself).

It took me a long time, but over the past years I’ve realized more and more that this thought of ‘needing to finish things’ can be quite dangerous. Among other things because for some people it just really is a lot harder to go through with things. And because I think some people are not made to do things for a long time. Everyone is different, yet the world is not designed for that. And not very accepting of that either.

I remind myself every single day that the way I handle things is not ‘wrong’. That quitting is not wrong. And that I’m not weak when I try a million things and not continue with all of these million things. I have to remind myself every single day, because it’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking I have to do things differently.

I hope that whatever it is that you do different than others, whatever it is that you feel like you do wrong but that feels good to you – you remind yourself regularly that you’re doing absolutely fine. One litte disclaimer: of course telling yourself that does not mean there’s no room for improvement, or that there won’t be times where you realized you could have done something in a ‘better’ way. But I think I don’t need to tell you that <3.



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