Quitting is for Winners
For as long as we’ve known, quitting has always been seen as something negative. Society has programmed us to believe that once you start something, you have to finish it—and if you don’t, you’re a quitter. Take this quote by Napoleon Hill as an example: “ A quitter never wins and a winner never quits.” Or even this one by Donald Trump: “I have never met a successful person that was a quitter. Successful people never, ever, give up!” I honestly believed statements like those most of my life. For some situations, it actually benefited me to not give up, but for others, it actually did more damage to my mental and physical health by not leaving a situation when I needed to. I stayed in a toxic relationship way too long because I didn’t want to give up on it, even though I knew it was no longer flourishing. I stayed at a job that was so taxing on my body that I hurt myself at work, and ended up in the emergency room, but went right back to work the next day because I didn’t want to quit. The physical strain from working made my injury worse, so I had to have surgery to repair it just a couple of months later. I think at that point I became more serious about taking better care of myself. I realized that it is not worth me damaging my mental and physical health just to say that I didn’t quit at something. I learned that knowing when to quit is a crucial part of self-care that I cannot ignore or neglect ever again.
Quitting is for winners
Despite what society has made us believe, quitting is for winners. If you quit a toxic and abusive relationship, you win. If you quit an unfulfilling job that’s going nowhere and pursue something aligned with your purpose in life, you win. If you drop out of a program in college because you realize that it just isn’t for you, you…win.
Just because you quit at something doesn’t mean that you will never be successful. There are many notable figures who have quit at some point in their careers and are still successful today. Simone Biles walked away from team finals in Tokyo to focus on her mental health and well-being. Naomi Osaka quit the French Open to care for mental health as well. They received praise from many people, as their decisions to step back shined a light on the importance of mental health and self-care. You simply cannot be your best if you’re not caring for yourself properly, so taking a break when needed is imperative in maintaining your health.
Know when to quit. Don’t let the fear of being labeled a loser or failure keep you in a situation that is no good for you. It’s okay to change direction. This is your life and you’ve got to find the happiest and healthiest way to live it, and if that means letting go of something or someone that no longer serves you purpose or makes you happy, then so be it.