Winners are quitters.
What? Nobody says that. What does that even mean?
Saying winners are quitters probably feels wrong because you remember hearing your parents or coach say, 'Winners never quit and Quitters never win'. That nugget of wisdom came from American Football Coach, Vince Lombardi back in the '60s.
I always thought it was true but now I know it's not. Let me explain.
Think about all of the things you've committed to over the last few years...like taking your child to practice twice a week, working out with a friend regularly, helping with a fundraiser, volunteering on a committee, teaching Sunday School. What's on your list?
Look at your own list. How many of the things on your list are you still doing today? Did you quit doing anything? If you did, why did you quit? Probably you quit because you completed something or you decided to do something else that was more important. If you hadn't quit, could you have realistically taken on anything else?
My guess is that you're not doing everything you were committed to doing a few years ago. You had to quit something to do the next important thing in your life. Look at you! You're a winner because you quit!
'Quitting well' is one of the most powerful things a person can learn do but most of us don't know it and certainly were never taught how to quit well.
To understand 'Quitting Well' (what I call the Power of Accountably Breaking Your Word), let's talk about 'Not Quitting Well'. That can go a few ways but the most common is called the 'Unspoken Broken'. This is when you don't actually quit but you slip away, hoping no one will notice. This happens when we commit to someone and suddenly realize that it was a mistake.
We actually don't want to do the 'thing' because we aren't capable, it isn't a priority, we lack the knowledge or resources, or something along those lines. This usually happens because we want to please the person who asked us to do the thing. We often agree from a sense of duty, obligation, people-pleasing, or just plain guilt.
The problem is, it's difficult to go back to the person and tell them we made a mistake. So, we just slip away and create an unspoken broken. We cause confusion in the relationship and when we don't keep our word, we make a withdrawal from the 'trust bank' we shared with the other person.
We also do damage to ourselves. We know we're out of integrity because we didn't keep our word. We feel our own confusion, self-judgment, and loss of self-esteem. If this goes unchecked and the pattern repeats, it can cause anxiety, avoidance, isolation, and even depression for us.
Quitting Well - Six Steps to Greater Joy
How do you 'Quit Well'? There are six steps that I'll highlight here.
1. Clarify - What are you up to and what do you really want to do. Before you can quit, you need to know what you want to do and dig into your 'Why'.
2. List - Next, pick one area of your life and make a list of all of your commitments, promises, and agreements in that area. Give yourself some time on this one. Start your list and come back to it over a day or two. More things will come to mind with time.
3. Evaluate & Eliminate - Now that you have your list of commitments, promises, and agreements, it's time to evaluate what stays and what goes. What stays is what you are actually committed to doing and what aligns with the clarity you arrived at in Step 1. Eliminating is the bigger piece and I'll tell you exactly how to do an Accountable Quit in my next post.
4. Prioritize - Look at what you have left on your list now that you've evaluated and eliminated anything that is outdated or unnecessary. That's what you're working with. Those are things you WANT to do and are committed to doing. But, the word 'Priority' means the ONE thing. So, get those things in order of importance and focus on the one thing that by doing it will make everything else easier.
5. Take Action - Now's the time to get off to a fresh start. Take action and build in some accountability so that you learn to catch yourself before you commit to something that isn't aligned for you.
6. Observe and Acknowledge - Give yourself a big pat on the back or a high five for taking these steps and clearing your path.
Watch for my next post where I'll get into the details of how to Quit Accountably. This is actionable, life-changing information and I can't wait to share it with you!
To your liberation,