There are so many times I want to quit. Like even while writing this blog, I sit and wrestle with the pressure of making sure it is something that the people want to read. Wanting to quit is no new phenomenon. It is pervasive among humans, and even more present among Black people (Corporate America can be beyond draining for us). It is a real emotion, and it can be overwhelming if you do not get a handle on it quickly. However, what does quitting accomplish? What about quitting is so enticing that becomes the go-to when all else fails? Why isn’t it easy to roll up your sleeves and get back in there? Honestly, I don’t know. What I do know is that while quitting is seemingly always available and accessible, it is not an option one should choose. There is a need to press and fight beyond that feeling of helplessness. From my experience, I have come up with a few reasons why we should keep pushing. 1. Emotions are not reliable. As stable as many of us are, some moments can shift the very trajectory of our moods. That lousy phone call, the annoying co- worker, the person who cut you off on the highway – all of this can be small things that change your mood. This change in emotions can affect productivity and alter your outlook and perspective on the day. It should not take some massive life alerting activity for your feelings to shift. Feeling a specific type of way is not a valid enough reason to give it all up. For some, this is easier said than done, but I challenge you to galvanize all the strength you have and push past what you feel about pursuing what you are called to do. 2. You are the template. Have you ever wondered why you couldn’t google what it is you are trying to do? It’s because there are no search results for it. Often, our desire to quit is out of frustration that there is no blueprint. Guess what? Pioneers are called to build and pave. You cannot give up because what’s on the inside of you is the inspiration someone else needs. Here’s some real necessary pressure for you: Your idea/purpose/calling is the solution to someone else’s problem. What you’ve considered giving up on is the strategy that someone else needs. 3. If you give up, then what? Seriously, what will you do next? The alternative for giving up is usually not as high as the return for staying in the trenches. Giving up now will resolve the immediate pressure and anxiety, but it will leave a void for purpose and fulfillment. You don’t want to go through life trying to fill empty spaces that could’ve have been sustained had you just hung there a little while longer. The intent of this post was not to make you feel guilty or condemned. The intention is the exact opposite. Giving up is always an option, but it’s the wrong option. Consider a multiple-choice test. There are usually 4-5 options one can choose, and only one of those options is right. The remaining choices are typically quite convincing, but after further examination, you figure out they are incorrect. In this test of life, we are presented with multiple options. Some of them are far more intriguing than the others, but the right choice is the one we should pursue. The path to the correct answer will look different from person to person, so don’t get caught up in social media hype or even the progress of those closest to you. Work at your pace. Accept that what’s for you is specifically for you. Giving up may give you temporary relief, but it only treats life’s symptoms. Get the help/boost you need and get back in the game! Wanting to quit is perfectly fine, but that doesn’t mean you do it. Have your moment. Get back up, and do what you are supposed to do. We’re all rooting for you! What self-care activity will you do during this time of quarantine to ensure you are energized and encouraged to keep pushing?
Joshua Rodgers is a native of Memphis, TN. A graduate of Morehouse College, Arkansas State University, and Georgia State University, Joshua is a life-long learner. He finds passion in working to inspire others to maximize their God-given utilities. Some of this work is done through a weekly blog called the J Word. It’s a cultural think piece around all things mental health, social wealth, and spiritual depth. He also is the curator of a health and lifestyle group – The J Work – on Facebook that encourages holistic wellness.
Currently, he serves as the Director of Assimilation at All Nations Worship Assembly – Atlanta, where he oversees the membership and volunteer services, visitor experience, and church culture initiatives.
Joshua is married to Asha Rodgers, and they live in the Atlanta Metropolitan Area with their two sons, Joshua, II, and Jayden Alexander.