Experiencing failure, especially repeated failures, can be debilitating in several ways. Most of us experience self doubt and a lack of motivation to continue. And yet, most of us still persevere and go out and try things again. But when is enough, enough?  And when is it time to give up?

Quitting at something almost universally is seen as a negative. Certainly, there are times when quitting can be good, like giving up smoking for example. But generally speaking, quitting something is seen as a loss. Even if it is something we don’t find rewarding, or something we don’t enjoy, quitting something always feels like a personal setback. But sometimes, quitting something can be the first step towards the road to success.

Of course, quitting isn’t for everyone, and at times it can be hard to know if quitting something is even the right decision. To help determine whether quitting something will be beneficial, it is important to ask yourself this very crucial question:

Is what I’m doing moving me closer to or further away from what I want most?

The closer we are to something, the harder it is for us to be objective. There are many times in my business (and life) where I’ve put a lot of time and effort into something but not getting the return I would have liked or expected. And yet, I keep going, afraid to let go because I have invested so much (time, money, etc.). Sometimes, we even stick with something even though it’s not something we enjoy simply because we have put a lot of time and effort into it. Another example for me is staying in my corporate job way longer than I should have. I was miserable in this job for years, to the point where it was taking a toll on my health but I was afraid to quit for fear of what others might think.

If you find yourself if similar situations, it’s time to step back and ask yourself:

  • “Why am I doing this?”
  • “Is this adding value to my life?”

Asking yourself these questions forces you to look at your goals and whether what you’re doing is moving you closer to or further away from your goals. If the answer is no, then you need to decide if what you are doing is worth doing if you want to achieve your goals.

The question reminds you of your true purpose, whatever it may be, it brings it back into focus, and once it is, you’ll be able to better understand how to reach it. To strive for it, and if necessary, quit or drop some unnecessary things to achieve it.

The fact is, to gain one thing, we need to let go of something else. We cannot hold onto everything. That means that quitting, or giving up, can be a positive thing. And, it’s positive if we give up the right things.

So what do you need to quit in order to achieve success?