Some days, you are going to have to forfeit.
Sometimes, you are going to put up a good fight for as long as you can, and realize that there is no other choice but to let go.
Sometimes, you are going to need to put down the computer, turn off the phone, shut the door, lay down and go to sleep.
Sometimes, you are going to need to walk away from the relationship, the job, the friend that isn’t wrong, but isn’t totally right, either.
Sometimes, you will find yourself on the wrong path and it will take everything within you to be bigger than your pride, to admit something is wrong, and to get off it.
That’s the thing that most people don’t understand about giving up: it requires so much more strength and clarity and discernment and self-assuredness than you can even imagine.
Because you never have to give up on something that’s totally wrong for you. If it were totally wrong, you wouldn’t have done it in the first place. You wouldn’t be interested. You wouldn’t have started the relationship, or the career, or whatever it is. If something is really, completely wrong for you, there’s no attachment there.
What you have to give up on is the almosts. The maybes. The somedays.
What you have to give up on are your unrealistic expectations. Your own relentless pressure to mold yourself into a person that you were never meant to be. Your desire to force a relationship that just isn’t going to happen.
What you have to give up on is the old life that your former self-drafted up in your mind. You don’t have it because you’ve changed. You’re different, you’re new. And yet so many people spend so many of their days mourning the lives they thought they wanted when they were someone else.
So many people think that in the gospel of success, the #1 virtue is never, ever loosening your grip on what you want.
They think that achievement comes only from grit, only from the resilience that it takes to get knocked down 7 times and stand up 8.
But what about the resilience it takes to admit that maybe, your struggle isn’t a sign of growth? What about the inner strength it takes to realize when your struggle isn’t noble, it’s a red flag and then a dead end.
Yes, life is hard sometimes. You have to show up every day. You aren’t going to be amazing at anything the first time you try it. You are going to have to log your 10,000 hours before you can even think of mastery.
But when you keep trying and keep failing, when doors stay shut and opportunities don’t rise, when you aren’t motivated and doing what you’re doing makes you feel depleted, exhausted and filled with self-hate… sometimes, it’s because something isn’t quite right for you.
It takes a lot of courage to admit when you have to give up.
It takes a lot of guts to leave the relationship that you still want to salvage some potential out of, the job that is pretty good but more draining than it is inspiring, the old dream you had about something that you’re pretty good at, but not quite amazing.
The things you give up on are not synonymous with the things you’ve failed at.
Nobody really knows what they want until they’ve experienced what they don’t.
The problem is when people get too wrapped up in their egos to admit that they chose wrong, they thought otherwise, and they now have to choose and think again.
So some people spend the rest of their lives stuck, only because they never get the strength to let go. People think holding on is the hardest thing you have to do, but it’s not, because it doesn’t require change. It doesn’t mean you have to face the unknown. It doesn’t mean you have to rewrite the whole story of what you thought your life should be.
Often, holding on is what you do when you’re not strong enough to scrap your plans and start anew.
Just like how being indecisive is what happens when you know the answer, but cannot accept it.
The truth is that sometimes, the most loving and important thing you can do for yourself is give up.
Because the sooner you give up on what you know, deep down, isn’t for you, the sooner you can start putting your energy toward what is. The sooner you start again, the sooner you will arrive. The sooner you let go, the sooner you can find something new. The sooner you rest, the sooner you will be ready.