I am not a quitter. I’m actually something of a pit-bull when it comes to things like computer trouble-shooting (please, don’t email me for tech support), under-performing processes and problem-solving in general. I do not let go. Needle in a haystack? Don’t throw away your thread. Lost your wedding band in the snow picking up dog poo? Let me get my mittens (true story). This means a lot of end zone celebration when I finally make a breakthrough, but can also mean a load of anguish when I can’t accept when it’s time to let go. In the immortal wisdom of The Gambler, you got to know when to hold ‘em, but you also got to know when to fold ‘em.
Released from obligation, charge, or penalty. To set free. Relieve.
The cultural taboo of being a “quitter” is losing credibility. When the quit is a bad habit, you enter an elite club where you have overcome. Smoking, drinking to excess, eating from a drive-thru — conquer one of these and you prove your inner strength.
Quitting is good!
Even in the juggernaut that is the Chinese economy, well-educated and gainfully employed young people are turning to naked resignation – quitting a job without another lined up – when they become bored or disillusioned (click to read the Christian Science Monitor article from November 2011).
But even this is not “quitting” in the school-yard-derision sense of the word. This is empowerment, self-awareness and fearless resolve at its rawest! It is I-make-my-own-destiny-style thinking!
Kelly Gurnett, a.k.a. Cordelia of Cordelia Calls It Quits, has got this down and has pretty much turned pro at quitting. Think you’re the only one yearning to chuck your job and go [insert dream here]? Start a blog about it and the cosmos will unite you with your long lost tribe. Everything Cordelia does is part of her plan to write for a living. She is a master of self-awareness and the Queen of Quit. She takes all her dirty little secrets and lays them out for everyone to see, including herself, and says, “Yeah, I’m quittin’ that.” BOOM.
Self-image issues? Quit.
Allowing imperfection? Done.
Embracing her crazy? You bet. (Really, who doesn’t have something??)
Cordelia is quitting. And yet, she is one busy chick chasing down her dream of writing for a living, with integrity and gusto, if I may say so. I privately think she must have more hours in her day than I do, with all the books/web links/guest blogging/day job/freelance writing jobs/oh yeah, and all the quitting you can read about on her blog. She is one unstoppable quitter.
Cordelian philosophy is uncomplicated:
Cut out the junk that saps your time, energy or money, because there are better things to do with your life.
Start there and living your dream is closer than you think. Cold turkey, or give yourself a dozen chances. Tomorrow or after you plot your course carefully. Quitting like this is making bold statements to yourself about your life. Be honest about what holds you back, large or small scale, in any context. Own it. Then, quit it.
I blogged last week about finally quitting my job, albeit a bit earlier than originally planned, after concluding simply that it’s time. On the day after my last day, my title will be “Freelance Writer.” Because I’m that kind of quitter.
Be patient and honest with yourself. Don’t give up. You, too, can BE A QUITTER!
Learn quitting from a pro. She of the panda hat. Go visit Cordelia.
Note: text that looks like this is a link. Click it. Broaden your horizon. I put out only the good stuff.