6 Ways to Stop Quitting What You Start
6 Ways to Stop Quitting What You Start
Quitting – we’ve all done it, whether it was a bad relationship, job, friendship, diet or even a hobby. Now, there are two different kinds of “quitting” that we typically face. First, you have the legit quitting which could be a broken arm that stops you from fulfilling your baseball career. Then, you have your shit quitting. This is what I like to call your mental quit. There are many reasons why we quit on our dreams or even projects we’ve committed to that we really want to accomplish. My friend, change is hard. Trust me, I get it. We face change every. single. day. and change is scary. But if we can’t face adversity and challenge ourselves, then we will never be anything other than average, living the same life we’ve always had, while wishing it was different.
So what is quitting? Essentially, it’s our brain’s way of telling us, “It’s okay to move on” or “Let’s take the easy way out,” when it gets hard. That’s usually when we make the decision to stop and move on to another project usually because it got tough. This is like climbing a mountain and stopping to turn around right before we get to the peak! At some point, we have to face the fear and do it anyway because the reward outweighs the pain.
There are many reasons why quitting seems easier, but there are also ways to avoid the path of least resistance, push forward, and keep going.
Here are 6 ways to help you stop quitting what you start.
1. Don’t break promises you make to yourself
So many of us fall victim to “people-pleasing” and you better believe I’m certainly guilty of this, too!
I was reading “Girl, Wash Your Face” by Rachel Hollis and this line stuck out to me:
“I don’t break promises to myself anymore.” – Rachel Hollis
Whether it’s getting up early to meditate or heading to the gym, we have to be honest and realize we make it easy to break promises to ourselves, that we would never break to other people. It’s not OK to cancel on ourselves! Otherwise our words have no value and we’ll continue quitting anything we set out to do and never develop the healthy habits we promised we’d FINALLY stick to. We might go out of our way to make sure we don’t let someone else down, but why are we okay with letting ourselves down? Personal commitments are the most important ones to keep.
[ctt_hbox link=”2n218″ via=”no” ]First start with making a promise to yourself and STICK to it. Keep your word to yourself. No matter what. [/ctt_hbox]
2. Beware of your current habits
When starting a new habit, our subconscious wants to stop us because we are used to our routines. This means we have to be conscious of changing those rituals, habits, and routines to serve our greater good. Acknowledge the new habit by noting it in our calendar. That way we’ll know when we’re supposed to do what and can learn what distractions are stopping us from achieving success.
If my plan is to write a blog outline every morning and I’m not achieving it, I have to ask myself, “What’s getting in the way?” The dang phone! So I hide my phone in my desk drawer, and guess what?! I’m 10x more productive in the same amount of time than I was the previous day. That also means turning off notifications on my computer so I’m not constantly distracted. We must eliminate the habits that cause us to procrastinate because multitasking is the devil when it comes to productivity.
A great way to change this bad habit is to start analyzing what we’re currently doing and then hide all the things that hinder our focus, like putting our phones on “do not disturb” and making changes in our current routine to create new habits.
3. Surround yourself with people who commit to their goals
We are who we surround ourselves with. In other words, we are the average of the 10 people we spend the most time with.
Are the people around you lazy or are your friends showing you whose the boss when it comes to success? Do you feel inspired and motivated when you talk to your peers or are you depressed by the time you hang up the phone? Are most of your conversations around the water cooler at work about how stuck you feel or how you’ve gotten laser focused on tasks and are on target to achieve the big things first, rather than constantly sweating the small stuff by complaining?
Even though we don’t realize it, we are a product of our environment. This is so important to remember. When we spend our time around people who are smarter, more driven, more focused, more goal oriented and more successful, we will learn and excel much faster because proximity is power. We become like the people we are around most.
I always suggest to join a group that will challenge us to hit our goals. Get a coach who can keep us accountable or join a mastermind with liked-minded individuals who will help us create success by sharing ideas and networking with one another.
4. [ctt_hbox link=”cJzD0″ via=”no” ]Set up a process for success [/ctt_hbox]
When we don’t create a system for success, we’re setting ourselves up for failure. Let’s say I want to get up at 5am every morning, but I can’t seem to wake myself up in the morning. “What’s stopping me?!” Other than self talk, it’s my process (or lack thereof) in the morning. The night before, create a morning routine that makes it exciting to get out of bed. Set out our clothes, computer, prepare breakfast in advance, etc. Make it easy for the mind to get comfortable with what’s about to happen. I have an alarm on my phone that tells me it’s bedtime. It warns me that for 8 hours of sleep it’s time for bed. And of course, an alarm for morning as well.
The same thing goes for other habits you want to make consistent. Use tools such as “toggl” to track your time and set up the pomodoro technique. The pomodoro uses a system of 25 minutes of work, and 5 minutes of rest. It pushes a sense of urgency to complete tasks so that we can have 5 minutes of time for ourselves. It also let’s the brain know there is an end.
Most of the time we feel like, “It will take forever” but that’s usually not true. Uninterrupted focus is an amazing thing but so is an end date or in this case an end time. Like a workout class, you know it will be hard, but you also know it’s only 45 minutes or an hour so there is a certainty – knowing that it will end. When we do hard tasks this way, it tricks our brain into committing and starting. If there is no set end time, we feel overwhelmed and never even start.
5. [ctt_hbox link=”RUDAk” via=”no” ]Acknowledge that there’s some upfront learning [/ctt_hbox]
Everything we do for the first time is unfamiliar and when there is uncharted territory, there is always fear. When we try something that we’ve never tried before, there’s almost always a fear of failure. We must work in time, in our schedule, for getting education and learning new skills. For instance, if we want to start a new business or write a book or start a new diet program, and we’ve never done this before, we will need to learn new skills which means we have to make time for that. Allow this time in our calendar by replacing something that isn’t necessary for hitting our goals.
Instead of reading a novel or catching up on our latest TV show or surfing social media, make a commitment to replace that time for a short period of time each day, in order to get the education we need to hit our goals and stay on task. Sometimes getting education is the key to not quitting. Saying “I don’t know how to do this” is a great excuse to give up, but I’m not buying it. There are always more reasons to keep pushing forward than there are to give up or stay solidly standing still.
If we find ourselves at an impasse because we don’t know how, there is always a book, blog post, or google search bar with the answer to our questions. I swear I have a Phd in Google. I’ve learned more than I ever learned in college, by watching youtube videos, listening to webinars, reading on the web and reading books. In the information age, not knowing is an excuse for the real reason which is “It’s too hard.”
6. Be persistent
I have always believed that persistence is the key to achievement in life. That, and a really strong why. That why is the reason people don’t quit on their dreams. If we have no “real” reason to push forward, then we will stop and go back to our comfort zone (food, TV, shopping, commiserating or hanging out with others who are comfortably miserable.)
[ctt_hbox link=”i8BNd” via=”no” ]If we don’t quit, it is inevitable that universal forces will work in our favor. [/ctt_hbox]
The next time we are wondering where we are in the “quitting on our dreams” department, we can take a look at how we feel. Our emotions will certainly tell us. Feel bad? Then we know we are heading for destruction. Feel good? Then we know we are going the right direction. It is so much more fun to find happiness in the journey to success, than it is to doubt every little step. When we are chasing our dreams persistently, we are generally the happiest person in the room, on our way to the success that we deserve, BECAUSE WE KNOW WE WILL GET THERE!
You’re not allowed to quit on your dreams!
And please don’t let anyone tell you otherwise…
When it comes to habits – be persistent, set yourself up for success and have self-compassion along this new journey. Everyone fails, everyone has bad days, everyone wants to give up at some point, but the ones who push through that fear and do it anyway are the ones who live the life, most of us only dream about. Are you ready to step into the life you were meant to live? Today’s the day. There will never be a better day than today.
What are your goals that you’ve been working on? Have you been consistent or is it time to create a new habit? I want to know what tips you have for not quitting. Post them in the comments below. You never know who in the Art of You Community needs your sage advice.
I can’t wait to hear from you.
Now let’s turn those dreams into reality,