A couple of weeks ago, I wrote an article 9 Reasons to Quit, I was touched by dozens of people who reached out to me saying how the article resonated with them. But I didn’t want people to get the wrong impression and start quitting everything they started. Because quitters never win and winners never quit – and I don’t know about you, but I’d rather be a winner than a quitter.
My favorite life motto’s is by Helen Keller who said, “The woman who began the race is much different than the one who ended it”. Helen was deaf and blind but she went on to achieve a teaching degree, be an activist, author and lecturer. She inspired me because she didn’t quit and she didn’t let society define what she could and could not do.
I was thinking about the dozens of things that I wanted to quit in my life, pretty much everything on my epic bucket list, but I didn’t and that was awesome! Even when I was getting read to give my TEDx talk I was terrified. Some of the countries I’ve visited, even right now while I run my own business, I am terrified…
But…those were also defining moments in my life. Allow me to take you through 9 top reasons why you should Not Quit!
1. Patience and Resilience
In one of my previous jobs, I had a tough boss who was insecure that someone would replace her. She made it her mission to make the life of anyone, who had to work with her, miserable. On my second week at work she tried to fire me, because she was afraid of me and at that point I wanted to quit.
She got furious when the company decided to divide her role and give half of the responsibilities to me, a 20 something. This job was one of the most difficult experiences that I have ever had, but it taught me to assess and strategize and find solutions to any situation, and the opportunity to manage a department. I learnt how to navigate through the various layers of the organization and to advance my career without her.
I learnt that personal branding within an organization is a crucial component of a successful career. I had other managers including the CEO and other regional directors who supported me and admired my patience, that helped me advance my career more than I could imagine.
Maybe its worth learning patience and resilience… So I don’t think you should quit!
2. Face Your Fears: Kill that Inner Voice
Challenges make you stronger. Sometimes it’s easier to quit than to keep going, at least in the short term. I think about my inner voice that sometimes tells me that I am not good enough or I am not strong enough! If we make that our focus, do we ever really achieve greatness?
You are not someone that is weak and gives up. Go out there and prove yourself to the world and to yourself. You CAN and WILL achieve what you set out to do. The only time you fail is when you give up. Also I always think of it like this: ‘if someone else has done it so can I’.
Maybe it’s worth killing that inner voice… So I don’t think you should quit!
3. An Epic Adventure is Waiting!
Last week I watched an Australian documentary called Mongalian Bling. The director had been travelling around the region as a tour guide when he discovered the hip-hop scene and shortly after, realized it was a story he needed to share. At the time, the director, Benj, didn’t even know how to film, but knew that he committed to sharing the story. He moved back to Australia and while working during the day, he enrolled at night to learn how to film.
Long story short, 6 years later, after tons of hardship, lots of learning, he finished the documentary and its been screened in over 15 cities around the world. What’s better, he discovered his passion and wants to make movies for a living. If you want to screen it in your city, reach out to him!
Maybe it’s worth the challenge for the adventure… So I don’t think you should quit!
4. News Flash!! You have a gift and the world needs to see it!
Have you ever asked yourself why you are here on earth? God, super forces or whatever you believe in have created you for a special purpose, and you need to discover what that purpose is. If you were born for a special purpose, then you should let it show.
If you don’t think you are special… Walk yourself over to the mirror/ flip open your smart phone and record yourself saying this “I have a gift and the world needs to see it”. There is no other person like you on earth (Can you imagine two of you!). That is why you are so special!
You have unique talents, unique skills and expertise; therefore you can make a unique contribution to your company, department or family and friends. Now don’t worry, if world domination is not on your list, you do still have something to give – maybe for your community or our town.
Maybe it’s worth sharing your gift… So I don’t think you should quit!
5. You are Stronger Than You Think
I know that sounds cliché, but really you are! When I was a kid, I used to volunteer in the children’s cancer hospital. I saw these parents whose kids were dying and when I asked how they were doing, they responded “alhamdulillah” which is an Arabic word for Thank God.
I thought to myself if my child was diagnosed with cancer, I would be pretty pissed off. But when my father was diagnosed with 4th stage cancer, someone asked how I was. I don’t know where the strength came from but I said that word “alhamdulillah”.
I think about my first 5 km run, my first 10km, my first 15km, my first half marathon, losing my Dad, living in 7 countries, my first triathlon, duathlon, epic adventure cycling 450 km in East Timor and the list goes on. I didn’t think I could do any of these things, but somehow I found the strength.
Maybe you are stronger than you think… So I don’t think you should quit!
6. You have the potential to make things happen
I love the Olympics! It’s a great time of inspiration! You see athletes push themselves further than they thought possible. In the 2008 Olympics in China, 43 world records were set and last year in the UK, 37 more were set. I am pretty we can bet many more will be broken in Brazil for 2016.
How are athletes getting better in their craft? Are you able to get better if you put in the 10,000 hours? Are you aware of how much potential you have? Are you focusing on unlocking the potential you have instead of focusing on that thought that tells you to give up your dream?
Maybe it’s worth pushing yourself just a little bit more… So I don’t think you should quit!
7. The race is only with yourself
My favorite story is the one of the turtle and the hare racing, where the arrogant hare takes a nap, while the ‘slow and steady turtle wins the race’.
I think about when I first compared myself with my friends who were bankers, lawyers and consultants who were following the conventional path. It really stressed me and I put myself under more pressure. I didn’t want to take the typical route – I am a social scientist, a creative type and a change maker.
The race is less challenging when I spend my time focusing on a race that I have defined for myself. You are unique and special. The problem with comparing yourself with others is that you don’t know what it took your peers to be where they are today. You don’t know the obstacles they had to surmount, the sacrifices they had to make to be where they are today.
Do your things one step at a time, believe in yourself and move according to your own pace.
Maybe you should focus on what you need for myself… So I don’t think you should quit!
8. You are Closer than You Think
Do you remember the movie that Will Smith starred in called “The Pursuit of Happiness”? The movie is actually based on the life story of Chris Gardener, a man who had no money, no job and had his wife leave him. He took an unpaid internship, landed a job and went on to become a multimillionaire with his own investment firm.
Seth Godin, a marketing genius says in his book called “The Dip” where he says that often when you are about to give up you are so close to making a huge break-through. Seth teaches us that at any given time we are always only a heartbeat away from success.
Maybe you are closer than you think… So I don’t think you should quit!
9. If you quit, you don’t create awesomeness
My friend Laura from Gone Adventurin’ went to Vietnam for 4 months that transformed into 5 years. She struggled at first and had countless times where she felt frustrated but she didn’t quit because she knew that the company was a great playground to learn and to grow. She knew the experience would help her in whatever else she decided to do next.
The challenge was tough and it was emotionally hard but it allowed her to learn a lot about herself and how to persevere. If she had quit, she would not have had the opportunity to build strong relationships, revamp the whole company’s brand positioning, join board meetings at the age of 23, open brand franchises in Philippines and Japan, or be a part of raising $50 million in capital.
Maybe it’s worth the challenge to be a part of something awesome… So I don’t think you should quit!
You may be in a situation that dictates you to give up, but don’t give in nor give up just because of the situation. You will come out victorious. The former Prime Minister of England, Winston Churchill emphatically said, “Never give up, never give up, never give up.” You don’t have a reason strong enough to give up your special dream or goal.
I hope you have found this post useful. Have you learned anything from not quitting in the past? Why shouldn’t people quit? Please leave your comment below.
Yasmine is marketing & lifestyle expert, adventurer and is the founder of Transpiral.org, a leading institute that equips women to take their careers and businesses to the next level. She is the author of the forthcoming book called Wonder Women’s Guide Asia where she is interviewing 50 most Powerful Women. Connect with her on Twitter @yasminekhater, facebook and Linkedin
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