Top BAD Reasons to Quit Something Big

Posted: February 2, 2013 in Leadership, Success
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Last weekend I attended one the 3 LIFE winter leadership conventions, and thought it was one of the best ever. One of the best talks was given by Wayne MacNamarawho was recognized for achieving the rank of LIFE Policy Council Member. This is a very significant achievement – showing he has developed many teams of growing leaders. He achieved this through learning and applying the information gained through the LIFE materials and training system. Starting as a welder going nowhere, he now leads thousands of people in his organization. What I found really significant in his story was his level of leadership after the first 5 years. He still wasn’t making much money, but instead of quitting he continued his journey on to riches.

This made the best teaching talks all the more significant. The most significant of which was given by Chris Brady in my opinion.

He listed the top 10 BAD reasons to quit something. I wish I was able to write fast enough to get everything, but all I managed to write down were the reasons themselves since the talk was so good.

I’ll list the reason he gave, and fill in the blanks from my knowledge and interpretations of everything I’ve learned up to now. Chris was talking about how people don’t just all of sudden get up and quit something, but that it happens gradually, following a progression. The key to not quitting is to recognize the different thoughts that cause us to quit and to guard against it.

In my post ‘The War on Mediocrity’ I said,

The average person won’t make sacrifices. The average person will cower from criticism. The average person is unwilling to fail. The average person is unwilling to work hard enough and long enough to get results. The average person quits. The average person won’t dream big. The average person won’t read books or listen to CD’s on leadership and personal development. The average person is unwilling to learn. The average person caves in to the peer pressure of those who don’t have the results they want. The average person believes in majority opinions and won’t think for themselves. The average person won’t set goals and focus on them until they are done.

And what Chris shared falls in line with this (probably because I got those thoughts from materials produced by him and Orrin Woodward).

1. I no longer believe I can do this!

The reason for this is that your dream probably isn’t big enough. If we constantly focus on what it is we want, and why we started in the first place, this can be overcome. Like I pointed out in my post about the importance of dreams – you have to have a dream that is bigger than any obstacles you will come across. Whatever it is your doing can more than likely be accomplished by having the right skill set – and these can be developed.

2. Some people I was working with quit.

Understand that people quit things all the time – that’s why so few people are successful. Ask your self if your partner was essential to your success. Can you still be successful without them? You can even re-frame this in positive light in order to not be discouraged; ask yourself what can be learned from this. What happened to cause your partners to quit, and how can you avoid making the same mistakes?

3. I’m out of resources or contacts.

Are the required resources needed finite? Is there a way to get more? I remember what Chris Brady said here;  check with your mentor or someone who has success in your field. find out if they went through similar set backs and what they did to get through it.

4. I gave it my best shot.

For most people this isn’t actually true, and it’s just an excuse they make to themselves to feel better about quitting. But even if it is true, think of Chris Brady’s formula for high achievement; success = (hard + smart work) / time. You gave it your best shot – but did you do it long enough? Did you do it often enough? In the time you did put in, did you accomplish anything – even if it wasn’t as much as you wanted? If so, take heart in how far you’ve come, and not how far is left to go. Maybe it will take longer, but if it’s still possible – keep going!

5. I’m not as far as I thought I would be by this time.

This one was kind of answered above. But Chris also pointed out that you should take another look at your expectations. Were they maybe a little to high for the time period you set? He say’s that people will often over estimate what they can accomplish in a short time span of 1 or 2 years. He also says that most people will greatly underestimate what they can accomplish in longer time span of 5 or 10 years. You may not be as far as you want to be at the moment, but are you further than you were?

6. I’ve invested so much and still have so little to show for it.

The last two answer this one a little, but think of what would be lost if you quit now; all you’ve invested will be for nothing. maybe that little bit more is all it will take. It reminds me of a story (don’t know if its true) about a man who owned a gold or diamond mine. He drilled and drilled in so many different places, and then gave up. He sold the mine to someone else who drilled 3 more feet in one of those locations and hit the mother lode!

7. This is harder than I thought.

Success is not easy. As Orrin Woodward says ‘Success never goes on sale’. It may be harder than you thought, but aren’t the results to be obtained worth the extra effort? It comes back to what I said in #1; You have to have a big dream or goal and never lose sight of it. The moment you lose sight of what you want to achieve, the struggle will no longer seem worth it.

8. Someone made fun of me.

Remember that if your doing something great this is unavoidable. There will always be critics who will try to take down those trying to do something big. Most of these people are to scared to do something themselves and the only way they can still feel good about themselves is to think there is something wrong with those who are doing something. Anyone who stands out in the crowd will find critics, and the only way to stay in the shadows is to do nothing , say nothing and be nothing. So re-frame the idea of critics in positive light – you are doing something right! A question to ask yourself is “Who made fun of me?” You should be careful who you are looking to for approval; is it someone with the results you want?

9. Someone I’m working with hurt my feelings / I’ve been wronged.

Can this be resolved? The best thing you can do to avoid this situation is to work on your conflict resolution skills. Another thing you can do is ask yourself “Am I going to let this person’s actions cause me to no longer be successful?” If you are quitting in retaliation, who are you really hurting more? Is it the person your working with or yourself? Consider that Chris Brady says that you should never make any big decisions when you are feeling down as we don’t think straight at these times. People often make rash decisions here so rest on it a bit. Do something to get yourself back in good humor before you make any final decision. A good question here is, do you want to be right or do you want to be successful? Being right is not always the right thing to do!

10. I came across some negative criticism and now I have doubts.

What exactly are these critics saying? Are you having doubts simply because there are critics, or because of specific things the critics said that seem valid after researching it? In the end you really shouldn’t care what critics think, as I stated in #8. Know that you will never see these critics. They are not your friends and it’s highly unlikely they have anything better to offer. You should consider whether these critics really care about you and your future.  They will not be there to congratulate you when you succeed, nor be there for you when you quit or fail. That being the case, why listen to them?

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