Why You Should Give Up

Flickr / Ashley  Webb
Flickr / Ashley Webb

You should give up. Quit whatever you’re working on; whatever you’re trying to accomplish right now. Just throw in the towel. And why not? Is this pain really worth it? The blood, sweat, and tears? The effort that you’ve already spent trying to do this thing or get to wherever you’re going? Why not just give up? Your effort doesn’t guarantee success. In fact, in this competitive world made of winners and losers, chances are you’re going to be on the losing side of things.

And being a loser hurts and sucks not matter how many feel-good quotes you read from athletes and writers and philosophers. The only reason why you know these quotes, is because these people “made it.” And people who “make it” are fond of telling other people that they can “make it” too. Which is silly because they should know better: Not everyone is going to “make it.”

I know this all sounds cynical but life isn’t a bed of roses. Isn’t it just better to call it quits before things get too hard and your heart gets broken anyway? Have you seen what happens to people who don’t make it? They go into depression, and who knows how long that will last? Nobody wants to say it: Mediocrity isn’t that bad. And it’s not in fact better to have loved and lost, than to not to have loved at all. We need to stop believing all these silly clichés.

You should just give up now.

Unless of course you’re willing to pay the price of not giving up – more blood, more sweat, more tears. The reality is that you might fail, you might fail miserably with creased hands, a few more worry lines, and in the end, a broken spirit. That could happen. That is a possibility that you must be willing to accept in whatever you’re doing.

But what if you kept fighting? And what if all that fighting, and modifying your dreams, and going to bed late and waking up early, led to something? What if that something led to you catching a break? What if that break were people who believed in you and helped you along the way? What if this belief kept you going and eventually you went to that promised place – that promised place of success? What if, after everything, you finally won?

It would all have been worth it. And I’d bet you’d go through twice the pains to get to that place. But this place is every bit as real as it is imaginary. You think the glory is in this place but as those who did their very best and failed will tell you: The glory was always in the process; the outcome only makes it sweeter.

Failure is better than giving up; participation is better than spectating; scars are better than thin skin. Or whatever. You can give up and never know sweet success or the courage of a magnificent failure. You can give up and never know who you might have been. TC mark

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