If you start something – you finish it. That is a lesson that most of us learned growing up. Whether it was a sports team, after school program, yard work – it didn’t matter. My father told me, “When you start something, you finish it – no matter what“.
Of course as a kid, I hated that. Kids get bored easily, especially when things aren’t going their way and very rarely did things go my way as a kid…
The first time I remember my father teaching me this lesson was when I signed up for basketball. To put it simply, I sucked. I was so mad at my father because he wouldn’t let me quit. He told me if I finished the season than I never had to play again but I couldn’t quit halfway through. I felt like he was punishing me because he wouldn’t let me quit a sport I was terrible at. I felt like each game I played I only embarrassed myself further.
But years later it made much more sense. It wasn’t punishment at all. In fact, it was one of the most valuable lessons of my childhood; Quitting is only hard the first time you do it; then it progressively gets easier. I made the choice to play basketball and it ended up being a mistake but if I had quit then it would have just made quitting easier for me down the road in life.
I learned that just because we make a mistake doesn’t mean we quit. Sometimes we just have to pay the consequences for the choices we make and learn as we go. I sucked at basketball but I didn’t quit. I finished the season and left basketball in the rear view mirror.
You don’t quit when you start something. It doesn’t mean you have to be good at it, but don’t give up. A firmly believe that each time we quit, we rewire our brains until quitting becomes our go-to response when life gets difficult.
Quitting is easy. Once you do it once, you make it an acceptable choice from that moment forward. But should you remove quitting as an option for yourself, you’ll grow stronger in the face of adversity from that moment forward.
By: Timothy A. Natale
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