“You’re not going anywhere until you’ve finished your meal!”
I remember being a child and having to remain at the dinner table long after everybody else had left. I wasn’t hungry, but I wasn’t free to leave until I’d finished my meal. Those memories have ingrained in the adult me a compulsion to continue eating even when full.
Being forced to finish what you’ve started creates unhealthy relationships with food. But what about the other relationships it impacts? …
I’ve done a lot of different things in my life so far. I’ve been an English academic, a writer, a health care professional, an endurance runner, a coach, a bartender, a cold-caller, and a game designer. If I tell you that I’m an entrepreneur, then this serial focus on different fields of work makes sense. Entrepreneurs are supposed to fail — repeatedly — until they find that thing that will propel them into the stratosphere of success.
But if I describe myself as an employee, rather than an entrepreneur, then that list becomes a series of questions. Why didn’t I persist with academia? What made me give up bartending? Was I ever serious about any of it?
Why didn’t I finish my damn meal?
It’s damaging to compel people to finish up, see out, or follow through every single time. Sometimes, the best thing you can do is stop what you’re doing, dust off your hands, and move on to the next adventure.
There’s a caveat. A serial quitter is someone who gives up when the going gets tough. Someone with an enterprising mindset quits when they’ve learned what they can.
Learning is the key.