“Never Quit.” What a spectacularly bad piece of advice…Never quit wetting your bed? Or that job you had at Burger King in high school? …I think the advice-giver meant to say, `Never quit something with great long-term potential just because you can’t deal with the stress of the moment.’ Now that’s good advice.” Seth Godin, The Dip.
According to Godin, winners who quit are those who make “a conscious decision… based on the choices that are available to you.” It’s called strategic quitting and it’s different than failing. He thinks it’s a smart move to quit something when it becomes obvious to you that the effort exceeds the rewards. I have to agree.
Failing is when you give up on your dream, “when there are no other options, or when you quit so often that you’ve used up all your time and resources… Quitting smart, though, is a great way to avoid failing.” In effect, you’re preserving your resources so you can redirect them into a project that will help you accomplish your dream.
How does `Quitting Smart’ translate into healthy living?
Some activities, like overeating, eating junk food, drinking, smoking, watching too much TV, playing too many video games, etc., zap your resources. Just think, if you’re a half-a-pack-a-day smoker, and it takes about 10 minutes to smoke a cigarette, that’s at least 100 minutes (over an hour and a half) that you spend every day treating yourself to some high quality poisons. I guess I don’t have to mention the huge dent in your wallet, do I?
Quitting these types of activities would free up loads of time, money and energy. These resources could be better invested in activities that will actually get you closer to your dream.
Whatever your dream may be, you can’t attain it without your health. And if you do manage to get your dream at the expense of your health, then how will you enjoy it? That’s why I believe health is worth the effort. Health gives you everything you need to succeed in (and enjoy) life: energy, positive moods, confidence, stronger intuition and decisiveness – just to name a few.
The role of Conscious Living in healthy living
Most of the activities that get us further from our goals are performed without conscious thought. At the time, we’re not thinking about the possible long-term effects. In most cases, we partake in these activities when we’re stressed in a desperate attempt to alleviate that stress.
When we’re stressed, the logical part of our brain shuts down and we simply react. The evolutionary reason for this is simple: when there’s a saber-toothed tiger in the area, your body diverts all of its resources into getting the heck outta there. Instinct takes over – there is no time to think.
Unfortunately, this physiological function no longer suits us well on an average day. Many of our decisions are made in the moment and without much conscious thought. We’re simply reacting to the circumstances, using our emotions to decide what to do rather than using logic.
Conscious living, on the other hand, is all about calm decision-making. You’ve thought ahead of time about how your daily actions affect your future and have decided that you want to live your life with intention. This style of living generally involves knowing what you want out of life and preparing to get there with a flexible plan.
Once you have your ducks lined up in a row, then you can take it one day at a time. Being aware of your daily actions helps you to be in the moment. It provides you reassurance that with every passing day you live your life with attention, intention and purpose, you’re getting closer to your dream!
Wouldn’t you say that achieving your dream makes you a winner? In this instance, I’d have to say quitting the stuff that gets you farther away from your dreams will make you a winner every time.