There’s a negative connotation around quitting, and in fact, most people frown upon giving up on stuff. This can include marriages, jobs, friendships, hobbies, and family obligations. Most of the time people actually feel guilty if they don’t participate in these things. But I encourage you to give them up. Avoid them entirely if needed. This is because we’ve found ourselves in a society where the things that should ‘make us happy’ are actually the biggest culprits that cause anxiety, depression, stress and energy loss. So please, for your own sake, quit!
I’m writing this on an important date, two years ago I broke off my engagement. And in fact, I just quit my job. Now, I can’t tell you what quitting my job on a whim is going to result in, but I can tell you what breaking off my engagement did: it sparked a roller coaster of self-discovery and self-love that landed me in one of the best mental states I’ve ever been in. This is why I was able to realize the problems I was having in my career, like restless nights, 14 hour workdays, and no energy for anything but sleep and alcohol.
Coming to a precipice, I knew my job was affecting my mental health, and not only that, it wasn’t making me feel good (or spark joy for our Marie Kondo fans). After months of deliberation, I came to the conclusion that I needed to do something that not only left me with enough energy to have a life after my 9-5, but something that helped change the world. So I quit.
It’s true that quitting something in itself can cause anxiety, so it’s important to think critically about these decisions, and make sure it’s the right plan for you.
Here are three things you can quit right now.
Family obligations: If your family causes you anxiety and worry, I encourage you to be more strategic about how much time you spend with them. If you usually see them every week or so, try moving to a once a month schedule and taking that time instead to do something that helps you reduce anxiety like coloring, taking a walk, or meditating. If you feel guilty for saying no to an invitation, ensure the family member that you’ll see them on a specific date in the future.
Job: Quitting your job is one of the best things to do. Work is the main culprit of stress in a lot of people’s lives. And if you have the savings, I encourage you to quit this stress-career as soon as possible. If you can’t quit today, start looking for another opportunity that will not only fulfill you, but decrease stress. Just applying to these types of jobs will spark your inner-fire and charge your imagination - can you see it? A life where your career fulfills you and changes the world?
Shaving: I know, it’s random, but what I really mean is quit anything that society makes you feel you have to do. That could mean shaving, going to the gym, wearing makeup. Sometimes the fear of not doing these things can cause anxiety. But break those habits and those expectations and focus on the things that make you feel good.
At the end of the day, remember that you only have one life, and you might as well be smiling through it. Because the world could always use more smiles.