Shortly after I graduated from college I had a magnificent revelation: I could quit reading my current terrible book choice. I had this realization on a sunny summer day. I picked up the book and it was bad. Almost immediately, I realized that there would be no test or quiz on this train-wreck of a book. I wouldn’t have to write an essay on this it and most importantly it would not be on the final. This is life! This is the final. I returned that book to the library and since then I’ve quit a whole bunch of books as well as other things. I quit some things out of frustration, some that to lead a less complicated life, some for my sanity, and others because I never wanted to do the “thing” in the first place. What if the secret to everything is as simple as outlined below?
Things I’ve quit out of frustration: driving my SUV because it cost lots of money for maintenance and even more money for fuel. I currently drive a compact car. I quit several knitting projects because I started the project thinking I was more skilled than I actually am. I unraveled many many of those projects with a smile on my face. I currently feel competent making baby blankets and wash cloths and that’s ok. I quit reading Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein even though I work at a museum that has an entire exhibit on the book. I read many pages and I know the story, but I had no idea what was happening in the book. I quit ceramics because, damn, making bowls is harder than it looks and firing is an art, but stained glass is up my alley.
Other activities I’ve quit to lead a less complicated life: buying so many clothes and so much “stuff”. I reduced my already small volume of clothes so much so that I don’t use a dresser any more. The clothes I have all fit inside my closet in my hundred year old house. It seems scary, but it’s awesome. Don’t get me started on the other stuff. I’ve quit lots of “stuff.” I quit playing full-time on two soccer teams so that I can do other fun activities with my evenings. Now I only play on one.
I’ve quit things for my sanity: relationships (romantic and otherwise) that were doing me no good. I have quit watching True Detective. Even though it’s all the talk at work, I think it is a chaotic mess. I quit.
Things I’ve quit because I never wanted to do “it” in the first place: I don’t think I ever wanted to ride a motorcycle, but I thought it was cool so I gave it a try. It is totally cool, but it wasn’t for me. I quit. I know how and still maintain the endorsement on my driver’s license for my beast of a scooter. (If you’d like to read more about my life on two wheels you can check it out here https://distractosquirrel.wordpress.com/2014/09/29/motorized-on-two-wheels/).
Don’t be confused; just because I’ve quit many things that doesn’t make me a quitter. I stick with most of the things I start. I work hard to set realistic goals for myself. However, there is no shame in stopping and taking a breath to regroup or quitting something or someone that is making you miserable.