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Written by Rebecca Lockwood.

When we start something new it is such an exciting time. We feel motivated and look forward to starting, getting stuck in and making things happen. Sometimes though it can come to a time when we are no longer enjoying what we are doing, or it is having such an impact on the other areas in our lives that we just want to call it a day.

But how do we know the difference between quitting something for empowerment or quitting something because we do not feel good enough to do the said thing?

I remember when I was 17 I set up my first business and I was really excited about it. In fact, I loved the idea that I could make my own money and not have to answer to anyone else. I had struggled to get a job and thought I could take the matter into my own hands. It didn’t last long, a few weeks even. It was a failure.

When I turned 21 I started another business. This time I knew better and I was again really
excited to make it work and take over the world. I was so pumped and quickly took my lessons from my last business and sales job in between and applied it to this business. I realised at this point that although my first business failed, the lessons I learned made sure that it wasn’t actually a ‘failure’.

After a difficult 3 years running the business I finally closed it down. But this time, it was down to being riddled with imposter syndrome, negative self-talk and limiting beliefs of not feeling good enough and not feeling worthy of having the success I had created.

At this time I stumbled upon Neuro-Linguistic Programming and Hypnotherapy and trained as an NLP Coach and Hypnotherapist. It was through this training that I learned about these limiting beliefs, negative self-talk and imposter syndrome, telling myself I couldn’t do it and wasn’t good enough to make it work. It was such an eye opening experience! I couldn’t believe that I had stopped my business because I subconsciously believed that I wasn’t good enough to make it work.

But how do we tell the difference?

The important thing is to understand what is really important to you in your life. When you know this you can then make choices from what's really going to make a difference in your life. When you know what is deeply important to you then you can understand if something is no longer going to support you or if actually you just need to take a step back for some time and maybe take a break. If something really isn't lighting you up any more or making you feel good this could be a good indication that you may want to quit and it’s time to throw in the towel.

We used to be fed this narrative of quitting means that we have failed. This is just not the case, it’s actually the opposite. When we quit something that no longer serves us we are empowering ourselves and creating space in our lives to do something else that we do enjoy even when we do not feel like it.

When we quit we give ourselves power and permission to do the things that we love. We empower ourselves to make space for the things that we do want to do. We are making a bold statement to ourselves that it is ok to stop doing something, stop seeing someone, get out of something we didn’t or no longer want to be in. Within ourselves we are telling ourselves that it is ok to follow the things that light us up and to stop the things that don’t.

Once we have quit something, or said no to something that we do not want to do we should be left feeling empowered and confident. However, unfortunately that is not always the case.

Sometimes people may experience a feeling of guilt or anxiety because something hasn’t been finished, or they are worried about disappointing someone. This happens because we are fed as a society that we should complete things and shouldn’t quit. That quitting and failure are linked. This is just such an outdated piece of advice that no longer and hasn’t ever really supported anyone.

When we quit something we may experience other people giving their opinions on what they think about quitting. Sometimes this can be positive and sometimes negative, as they may still be acting from the old narrative of quitting = failure. It is important to understand that they only ever mean well. People only ever say things based on what they believe to be true and it’s only ever a projection of their personal beliefs. Try not to take anything personally.

If you find yourself talking yourself around and deciding not to quit something and continue with it then and it works out for the best then brilliant. Sometimes it may not, and you may then end up feeling negative emotions towards yourself and potentially have a lot of self-judgement too.

This can manifest itself in negative self talk, imposter syndrome, anxiety - severe in some cases as you are not acting upon what your subconscious really wants and ignoring your primal instincts. Be sure to check in with yourself about why you are quitting something, to ensure it is the right move and not just down to you not feeling good enough to be able to do it.

Rebecca is the Founder of The Yes I Can Method™ Academy where she trains Neuro-Linguistic Programming, Hypnosis, Time Line Therapy®, Positive Psychology & Breakthrough Coaching. She's a best selling author, mum to 2 girls and she teaches entrepreneurial women the art and science of how the mind works. She's been featured on Stylist Magazine, Cosmopolitan, Marie Claire, Glamour, ELLE, Harper's Bazaar, BBC and more. You can download your free guide to
NLP by going here
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