I know this is something my clients struggle with and frankly fear. Also, this is something I just did myself.
Yep, I quit. What did I quit? Everything.
Well, not literally everything, but I did nothing for my coaching business except continue to see clients. No blog posts, no videos, no social media. I did the bare minimum with our brick-and-mortar business. Even letting important things fall through the cracks.
As a mom and wife, I did the bare minimum. Dinners weren’t made, laundry piled up. I did not follow my calendar or even look at it. I didn’t answer my phone and slowly answered texts if at all.
What did I do? I stayed in my bed and watched Netflix in my PJs all day. I made sure my kids did their schooling, that they ate something, and that they were okay. I emerged from my room to kiss them on the head occasionally.
What made me quit? Overwhelm, Frustration, Fear, Anxiety, Shame. I chose not to manage my mind.
I was ashamed of myself at the time, but as I write this, it just sounds like a nice break. What fun to lounge and watch TV all day. We call this buffering, but that is a subject for another time.
What do we do when we quit to get going again? It’s going to happen. We are going to set out to better ourselves in some way or accomplish something, and we are going to quit. Some would call it failure, but I don’t believe anything is a failure unless you truly quit and never try again.
ASSESS WHAT HAPPENED - What made you quit in the first place? I could have given you a list of things that happened, but I gave you the feelings I had because of what I was thinking regarding several circumstances that were happening in my life. Ask yourself why you quit.
DECIDE IF YOU STILL WANT IT - Do you still want to make that change or do that thing? Maybe you quit because it just wasn’t for you. That’s completely alright but make sure you are being honest with yourself. If it’s still something you want, let’s move on to number 3.
MAKE A NEW PLAN - You don’t necessarily need a completely new plan. Perhaps you just need to tweak some things. But learn what was working and what wasn’t. Perhaps what you were trying to do was just harder than you thought. How can you make it easier or manage your expectations? How will you handle obstacles this time?
GET GOING AGAIN - Please do not wait for the motivation to get going again. It is rare we are motivated to do something new or difficult. Motivation shows up once we get going. We now know why we quit, we worked on our plan. Now do the plan. Is it going to feel great at first? Not likely. You will probably be pretty uncomfortable, but you can handle discomfort. Also beating yourself up for quitting. No helpful and not allowed.
CELEBRATE - Change is hard. Doing new things is hard. Doing big things is hard. You can do hard things! Then they get easier. Congratulate yourself, high five someone, tell yourself how awesome you are that you are doing the damn thing. Generating that feeling of happiness, joy and pride is so important to keep you going. And never dismiss even the smallest efforts in the right direction.
So here is the game plan for the next time we quit because we will. It’s such a wonderful learning opportunity. Chose to make it into something wonderful. You learned what wasn’t working. You learned something about your thoughts and feelings. Not only that, but you learned who you want to be and who you don’t want to be.
Also, take this as an opportunity to take a good hard look at your beliefs about yourself. Do you think you are someone that always quits? How useful is that belief? If you believe this about yourself, you will certainly be someone that always quits. I’ll give you a belief I have about myself that I find very useful. I’m someone that always gets going again.