I believe one of the biggest mistakes you’ll ever make, and one of the greatest regrets you’ll ever have, is to give up on yourself. But what that means isn’t exactly what you’d think.
Giving up on yourself isn’t about quitting, it’s about losing faith in yourself and your abilities. It takes humility to know when it’s the right time to move on. Giving up on yourself isn’t characterized by having low energy and motivation to perform, it’s about not having the desire to make things better and to get back on track. Giving up on yourself has nothing to do with external results, it has everything to do with the way you internally relate with the decisions you make.
The reason giving up can feel so appealing in the face of anxiety and overwhelm is because it’s easy. Humans are hardwired to avoid discomfort, and giving up on yourself is a defense mechanism that protects you from the fears or pain you’re experiencing.
But that approach is flawed and doesn’t work in the long run. While you can give up on yourself you can never leave yourself, so every day you’ll need to look at yourself in the mirror and live with the reality you’ve chosen for yourself. It’s a sad life, and even if you fall into it know that it’s not permanent.
Know that failure is a normal part of life, so don’t internalize it as a reflection of you. Things never go perfectly according to plan, so don’t judge yourself or your capabilities when they don’t. If you feel like giving up, Ed Mylett has an incredible philosophy on it, born out of his father’s recovery from being an alcoholic. It’s called “the power of one more”. Commit to trying just one more time. Choose to stay sober for just one more day. That’s how you never give up on yourself, and I encourage you to step into it with resilience.
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