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Quitting as a Productivity Habit

“It’s better to just start the things that you know you have the resources to finish. You don’t want to be surprised by the hard parts, you want to expect the hard parts."

Seth Godin

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Quitting as a Productivity Habit

Quitting as a Productivity Habit

https://medium.com/personal-growth/quitting-as-a-productivity-habit-c776ca9d85fb

medium.com

6

Key Ideas

"When you quit with intention, you free up more time, money and energy for the things that really matter to your long-term goals."

"When you quit with intention, you free up more time, money and energy for the things that really matter to your long-term goals."

Quitting is underrated

Successful people quit (or proactively adjust) a lot more often than people who aren’t successful. They stay flexible and open to new ideas or opportunities or ways of getting things done.

But never quit something with great long-term potential just because you can’t deal with the stress at the moment

“Instead of continually trying to force yourself to do things you don’t want to do, let them go. Without the emotional weight and mental clutter of keeping things on your agenda that don’t absolutely need to be there, you’re much freer to rapidly move forward on what you really do want and need to get done.”

“Instead of continually trying to force yourself to do things you don’t want to do, let them go. Without the emotional weight and mental clutter of keeping things on your agenda that don’t absolutely need to be there, you’re much freer to rapidly move forward on what you really do want and need to get done.”

Learning to quit is a skill

Using quitting as a productivity habit helps you leverage your time, energy and money prudently while keeping you focused on the big picture.

Your time is limited, so if you can spend it elsewhere, and still make progress in the direction of your dreams, go for a better idea or approach.

“It’s better to just start the things that you know you have the resources to finish. You don’t want to be surprised by the hard parts, you want to expect the hard parts."

“It’s better to just start the things that you know you have the resources to finish. You don’t want to be surprised by the hard parts, you want to expect the hard parts."

When to quit

Set clear metrics that will help you to know when to give up on an idea, a habit, or a process. Don’t quit when the going gets rough. 

Quit because it’s the right, objective and logical thing to do after weighing your options. Quit because you have a better option and don’t want to waste your time and energy.

SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Why you are afraid of quitting

The sunk cost fallacy is one of the primary reasons you are so afraid to quit anything. It occurs when you tell yourself that you can’t quit because of all the time or money you have ...

Overcome the fear of quitting

Sunk cost is about the past. Opportunity cost is about the future.

If you are scared to quit (which is absolutely natural), always think of the opportunity cost. Think of the brighter future, not the scary past, and often times that is enough to give you that extra push to make the right decision.

Long-term cost outweighs short-term benefits

When you finally succeed, but you don’t have the health or someone to share the success with, the project might prove not be be worth it. 

Take 5 minutes at the end of the week and reflect on what you have achieved versus what you had to give up to achieve it so you don’t end up giving up too much without even realizing it.  Make this a habit

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Zero-based thinking

It gives us the rare opportunity to ask ourselves if there anything in our lives that we should do more of, less of, start or stop.

It is a decision thinking technique developed by Brian...

Difficult decisions

Difficult decisions are mostly about weighing the long and short term values. Making objective decisions is difficult because we are biased towards short-term rewards and pre-existing beliefs.

Optimal choices

Ask yourself, knowing what you know now, is there anything you are doing today that you wouldn't do again if you were able to?  

Be willing to stop doing what no longer works. Sometimes it is best to cut your losses and try something else. Be prepared to take risks and understand the potential failure that goes with a new course of action.

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Act as If You Are In Total Control
Act as If You Are In Total Control

Most successful people do feel good luck played some role in their success. But they don't wait for it or worry about bad luck. They act as if success or failure is totally within their c...

Ignore What You Can’t Influence

Mental strength isn’t an unlimited resource, don’t waste it on things you can’t control.

Do what you can. Be your own change--but don't try to make everyone else change.

See The Past as Training

Learn from your mistakes, and those from others too, but let them go. The past is just training; it doesn't define you.

When something bad happens, see it as an opportunity to learn something you didn't know. When another person makes a mistake, learn from it and see it as an opportunity to be kind, forgiving, and understanding.

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Your brain is the biggest obstacle.
There are lazy people, slackers, and folks who don’t step up, but generally, human beings are hardwired to hang in, not to leave or quit. 

What’s hard for human beings is letting go...

The most common biases
  • You’re focused on the time and energy you’ve already invested, or the sunk cost fallacy.
  • Your eyes are trained on positive cues -being overly optimistic and loss averse. Always trying harder and for longer.
  • When we realize we’re likely to fail at a job or other endeavor, we begin to see that goal as even more valuable than it was initially.
  • FOMO—and the fear of making a mistake.
Do this if you want to quit
  • Get a bead on your emotions. Don’t set yourself up for a “straw-that-broke-the-camel’s back” moment.
  • Motivate yourself. Quitting isn’t an end in and of itself; it’s a pathway to a new destination.

  • Make a plan that not only sets your new goal but anticipates possible setbacks and pitfalls along the way.

  • Prepare for the stress of transition. The best defence is knowing ahead of time how you’re likely to react.

The Pace of Growth

Whether it’s emotional, philosophical, interpersonal, or professional growth, people are not growing at the same pace.

Some people move light years if you don't talk to them for a couple o...

Stay Challenged

By staying challenged you do not slip into the dangerous comfort zone. You can stay challenged by:

  • Doing anything that you don't know how to do.
  • Doing more than you have time for.

This makes your brain cells work in creative ways for you to figure out new things and how to incorporate them into your life.

Big Goals

If your goals are mediocre and small, you will slip into distractions and routine work. It's always better to have an audacious goal.

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Fear born out of practicality

We sometimes give in to fear disguised as practicality.

Replace "I'd love to, but..." with "I'm going to, and...". The worst that can happen is most likely manageable ...

The "good enough" narrative

Don't settle for good enough, for the " I hate my job but it makes great money, I provide for my family and I can save for retirement".

Don't ignore the call for greatness, whatever greatness means to you.

Quieting your curiosity

Don't de-prioritize your curiosity. Never be satisfied that you know enough. 

Grow to think of curiosity as a value, a virtue.

Commit to doing one nice thing

... for yourself every day.

Remind yourself on a daily basis to treat yourself with loving kindness. It motivates you to take better care of yo...

Listen to yourself

We often criticize ourselves in our own heads and that damages our confidence.

Refrain from talking to yourself in negative terms. Know that you're good enough.

Forgive yourself

Most of us have been getting angry at ourselves for trying so hard to be perfect and then we beat ourselves up when we fail. 

Accept that you're stuck inside your own imperfect skin. 

8 more ideas

Excuses Breed More Failure

When you are disappointed, you have two choices on how to respond:  You can find out how you could have done it differently, or you can tell yourself that you were not at fault.

Personal Responsibility Breeds Success

Making excuses allows you to externalize your failures and blame something else. It also demotivates you when you feel the outcomes in your life are out of your control.

Taking up responsibility does the opposite: It leads to introspection where you can analyze what you could have done differently. It will motivate you to work better and harder.

How To Stop Making Excuses

It all comes down to the stories you tell yourself when you feel overwhelmed or fail.

If you work too much and don’t have time for fun, do you tell yourself that people demand too much from you? Or, do you tell yourself you don’t prioritize your own time well enough?

In one story you are in control, and the other you are not. Focus on the story you can control.

Defining "Success"

“Success” isn’t just having lots of money. 

Success is continuously improving who you are, how you live, how you serve, and how you relate.

Lose an hour in the morning, and you will be all day hunting for it.

Lose an hour in the morning, and you will be all day hunting for it.
Putting "first things" first

Start the day with your #1 priority.

Getting up early isn’t enough. You need to put first things first. When you put your top priorities first, then you ensure they make it into the bucket of your day. After your main priorities have been completed, the rest will fill the gaps.

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Quit When...
  • You're consistently experiencing more frustration than reward.
  • You can't envision a possible solution or continuing this way.
  • Spending time on this keeps you from more rewardin...
Before You Call It Quits
  • Make sure you've identified the real causes of your unhappiness. Keep a diary of events and problems.
  • Give it a chance. Many things, like diets, require time to work out.
  • Try many other solutions.
  • Have a backup plan. Know what you're going to do if you quit and what you need to do to prepare for that.