You Know It’s Time to Quit When…

There are certain sure signs that quitting is better for you in the long run. While many of these are common sense tips, it’s often hard to look at the situation objectively. Change can be frightening, there are always some positives to hold you back, and quitting often feels like failure—especially if you’ve invested a lot of effort or time into an endeavor.

Still, if it’s come to the point where you know something has to change, take a step back and see how many of these ring true for you:

  • You’re consistently experiencing more frustration than reward. With any situation, you have take the bad with the good. But if your experience is overwhelmingly negative for a long period of time, you have to consider leaving or some radical change. One unmistakable sign: You breathe a sigh of relief and your life feels instantly better with the mere thought of quitting. 
  • You can’t envision a possible solution or continuing this way. After trying to resolve the issues that have been dragging you down, you still have no confidence things will change. Maybe you’ve been promised a promotion (that’s always fallen through) for years; maybe you’re waiting on others to change their habits when it’s the last thing they want to do.
  • Spending time on this keeps you from more rewarding endeavors or seriously damages your well-being. Ignore the fear of quitting and consider: Do you think you could achieve a better life for yourself if you quit? Is staying on with a project or social commitment causing you to over-extend yourself.

You’re staying for the wrong reasons. If your decision to stay is based more on fear than on faith, you’re probably in it for the wrong reasons. Are you afraid to hurt someone’s feelings? Staying solely out of a sense of responsibility? Afraid to admit you just made a bad choice or start over (e.g., a wrong career move and now you have to quit a job?