Well, we’ve somehow made it to April…already a fourth of the way through the year?! And halfway through this deployment *insert praise hands emoji* which honestly can’t move fast enough. For a lot of us, it’s the time of year where our New Years resolutions are very much a thing of the past. Where school is SO close to being over, you can taste it. Where if you work a full-time job all you can think about is that Memorial Day holiday where you can FINALLY have your first day off since Christmas. Or where you’re dying for your husband to come home from that 4-month long deployment that’s suddenly started to make the days draaagggg. It’s a trying season, and if anyone gets it, it’s me.
Personally, I’ve never enjoyed this time of the year for one or all of the above reasons. And also because pollen. because bugs. because summer in the south (spring isn’t really a thing). Because I just feel like there isn’t a whole lot to get me out of the bed in the morning, ya know? This season has made me, for a lack of a better word, a quitter in the past. YIKES. That’s hard to admit. I know, that’s kind of a negative way to view a season haha, but it’s true. And if I can’t be real with you guys and share my struggles, why am I even here? So in today’s post, I’m going to tell you all about how I became a habitual quitter and what I’m doing to overcome it.
This post is for the woman who wants to quit.
I’ve Become a Serial Quitter.
Not to be confused with a cereal quitter. I’ll never quit you, cereal.
I didn’t used to be this way. I used to pride myself on never quitting anything I started. Student Council, Show Choir, horseback riding lessons, that DIY project that seemed like a good idea at the time, making straight A’s in literally every class, and jobs I wasn’t exactly thrilled about. Even if I wasn’t great at it, I was committed to seeing it through. And then adulthood happened. Somewhere between senior year of college and well, now, things just got a little more complicated. At some point, I became a serial quitter and I didn’t even know it. What have I quit you might ask? All the things, big and small.
I’ve quit workout programs and healthy eating. Heck, I even quit “quitting” soda. I quit jobs that I deemed not perfect enough. At times, I’ve quit being a good friend. Sometimes, I feel like I’ve quit being a good wife. I quit my Joy some days. In college, I quit church because going by myself was too daunting and stressful for my awkward, introverted self. I quit believing God can. And do you want to know a secret? Almost every single day since our move to South Carolina, I’ve wanted to quit my blog. Just throw my hands up and call it because of 1000+ reasons. But mostly because quitting is just easier, isn’t it?
Ok, so at this point, my mom is reading this, freaking out and thinking there is something seriously wrong. Hold on mama, it’s ok, it gets better.
Before I go any further, I want you to know my intention for this post. I know this all sounds really dramatic and like I’ve been dealing with a lot of hard things and like I’m throwing myself a pity party/complaining. But that’s not my intention here at all. My goal is to show you how I came to this realization and how I’m in the process of shifting my mindset. My goal is to help women like me know that they aren’t alone, and there is a way out of this serial quitter lifestyle!
It was a gradual thing that happened in my life because I let it become a habit. Then being in South Carolina with nothing but my blog and the dogs and my thoughts 80% of the time, God really started to reveal these things to me. It’s amazing what a little (or a lot) of quiet time can do. It wasn’t until about a month ago that I really realized I had become this person who quits things when they get too hard or when they aren’t happening as quickly as I would like. Can anybody out there relate? Or is that just me?
So let me tell you how I realized I was big ole quitter.
For the last several months while in SC, I’ve been in a major funk. I sleep WAY too late, I can’t focus on anything, and before I know it, the day is gone. It was so frustrating and I didn’t know what the heck was wrong. I thought things like “maybe I’m just not meant to work from home.” “Maybe I shouldn’t blog anymore because if I really loved it, I wouldn’t have such a hard time focusing on it.” “Everyone else is doing so much better than me.” “Maybe I shouldn’t have quit my corporate job even though it was mentally and emotionally wrecking me.” (side note: it is ok to quit some things. Like jobs that make you physically, mentally, and emotionally ill.) “Maybe I don’t deserve to follow my dream.”
What really made me stop and realize something was VERY wrong was when I started saying out loud almost daily to Kevin that I didn’t want to blog anymore. HOW could I possibly be considering quitting what was essentially a dream come true for me?
I couldn’t pinpoint where these thoughts and feelings were coming from. Was I just depressed because of our move? Maybe I was being lazy? Was my self esteem really that low? Had the comparison game finally gotten to me? About a month and a half ago, I got fed up with feeling that way and having those thoughts, so I started scrolling through personal growth books and devotionals, not really knowing what I was looking for, when one stuck out to me like a sore thumb. It was titled 5 Habits of a Woman Who Doesn’t Quit. SHOOK. Yes, I said it. All of a sudden I knew what I had become and where these thoughts were coming from. I was a quitter. And the devil had me right where he wanted me. Needless to say, I bought the book.
How I’m Quitting Being A Quitter
5 Habits of a Woman Who Doesn’t Quit is a devotional that takes you through the book of Ruth. It reveals how she became a woman who accepts her assignment from God, who is dependable, and who follows through with her commitments. Through this little paperback book and His word, God has opened my eyes. He’s also made me realize that I’m not alone and it’s not too late. That this season is His process of refinement in my life. So here’s what I’m doing to shift my mindset and grow through my assignment.
Accepting the assignment
I’m calling this 6-month deployment my assignment because it has unsettled me in all kinds of ways I didn’t expect. It has made me long for home and want to “flee to the familiar” as the book puts it, which is how I feel like I’ve been living life this year. Fleeing to what is easy and comfortable. Which is quitting. But instead of living the next 3 and a half months that way, always wanting to quit, I’m going to accept where I’m at and grow through it.
Quitting Is a Habit
Like a lot of things in life, quitting is a habit. It may take years to become one, but it is 100% a bad habit. Realizing that is HUGE. Quitting a habit is not easy, but the awareness of it gives us the power to make changes in our lives and shift our mindsets. It gives us the ability to push past our feelings, follow through with our commitments, and choose what we want most over what we want now.
Focusing on My “Why”
If you remember a couple of months ago, I talked about my goals for the year, and one of them is focusing on my “Why”. That’s still obviously a big one for me right now in the midst of having all of these doubts and thoughts about quitting the blog. Did I start this blog to become Instagram famous (lol) and make a ton of money, or did I start it to impact just one person’s life? Like I said above, it’s about focusing on what we want most over what we want now. Which for me has been unrealistic, instant success. What is the “why” in your life? Let it be your motivation when you get ready to quit your next workout program or your hobby or your relationships.
“Remember that you once dreamed of being where you are now.”
If this sounds like one of those super artsy, encouraging quotes you see on Pinterest, that’s because it is. Kind of lame right? But words are powerful friends, and this Pin slapped me right in the face. How selfish am I? A year and a half ago, I was sitting at my desk in my cubicle literally daydreaming of working from home and starting my own business. Of being able to travel more with Kevin. I would, no joke, long for more time to clean the house and more time to spend with my sweet puppies. Both of which I’ve found myself complaining about lately. So instead of quitting and complaining, I’m going to remind myself daily that I once dreamed of being right where I am today.
If this sounds like you, take a step back and evaluate where you are in your life now compared to last year. Are you in a place you once dreamed about being? Are you a new mom? Newly promoted? Engaged to the man you prayed for? Guess what…all of those things can be HARD at times. I guarantee they can make you want to quit some days. But if you stop for a second, you might realize you’re exactly where you hoped and prayed you’d be a year ago.
The fear of missing out. If anything has kept me hanging on by the skin of my teeth lately, it’s that. I don’t remember where I read it (probably Pinterest) but I saw something once that said this: “what if everything you’ve ever wanted is right around the corner?” WOAH. What if I quit today? What could I be missing out on tomorrow? Missing out on what could have been is one of the things that scares me most. What if I don’t quit today, and because I don’t quit today, all of my dreams come true tomorrow? Or what if you quit your job today, but tomorrow you would have gotten that promotion you’ve always wanted? What if you quit your workout today, but you would have finally lost that last pound tomorrow?
I think we’re always on the verge of something life changing, even when we can’t see it. So instead of quitting, I’m choosing to give it one more day in case tomorrow holds everything I’ve ever wanted.
He Finishes What He Started
Wouldn’t it be nice if God gave us a formula? A roadmap of what our life should look like and which decisions were the right ones? There are so many times when I’ve questioned what I’m doing with the blog and if I made the right decision quitting my corporate job to put all of my time and effort into it. Am I really affecting people’s lives? Is anyone even reading this right now? Why am I not growing as fast as she is? Should I just get a “real” job like everyone else?
Something the author of 5 Habits of a Woman Who Doesn’t Quit said really stuck with me. “And I felt the whisper of God say to me, ‘What if I want your process to look different from everyone else’s?'” Y’all. Wait. So you’re telling me that just because things aren’t moving as fast as I’d like them to or just because I don’t have 100k followers yet, doesn’t mean I should quit? Well, that’s a relief.
Here’s what I think: I think that God gives us desires and passions and hopes and dreams for a reason. And that each of our paths looks different from the person next to us. And here’s what I know: God finishes what he started. Don’t let being a quitter cause you to miss out on what He has for you.
And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ. Philippians 1:6 ESV
I don’t want to pretend like I have it all figured out, and I’ve suddenly become the most committed, dependable person. This whole mindset shift is most definitely a work in progress. I still wake up late a lot of days. Negative thoughts tend to creep in and some days it does seem like it would be easier to just throw in the towel. But I know that’s not what God has for my life and I’m headed in the right direction. I also know this post was LONG and if you made it all the way through, I appreciate you. I hope you were encouraged today, and I hope you can find your way out of the serial quitter lifestyle too.