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Quitting: A New Perspective

December 19, 2009

In the Name of Allah, The Most Gracious, The Most Merciful

There is a famous saying by Vince Lombardi that goes:  “Quitters never win and winners never quit”.

It didn’t take long for me to feel a sense of discomfort after hearing this. Something is just not quite right there.  Recently, I read a  book entitled The Dip written by the famous author and thinker named Seth Godin and it managed to shed some light on the issue of quitting. Here is my summary:

1)Winners quit the right stuff at the right time for a right reason.

2)We need to pre-decide (decide NOW) when to quit in any of the journeys. If we quit at the moment when discomfort hitting us, it may not be a clever decision. Strategic quitting is what matters the most, reactive quitting or serial quitting are not.

3) Winners stick (cleverly and flexibly) through the hard moments in the Dip and quit at the easy and smooth sailing in the Cul-De-Sac.

*The Dip is the stage in your life or work life or business where hardships hit you at the time when things started to really kicks off or a time of a change from the beginner level  to mastery level. Very few people stick to this moment which results to a huge number of mediocre but a scarce number of experts.

* The Cul-De-Sac comes from a French word that brings the meaning of “dead-end”. This is when everything is in idle mode. Nothing is changing and you learn nothing out of it. It is a very comfortable moment. Many people decide to live in it and few decide to leave and move on to another challenging state.

There is one part in the book that really hits me in the nose. I leave you with the excerpt. p/s: This book is totally a book to be owned by everyone.

Average if For losers

Quitting at the right time is difficult. Most of us don’t have the guts to quit. Worse, when faced with the Dip, sometimes we don’t quit. Instead we get mediocre.

The most common response to the Dip is to play it safe. To do ordinary work, blameless work, work that’s beyond reproach. When faced with the Dip, most people suck it up and try to average their way to success.

Which is precisely why so few people end up as the best in the world.

To be a superstar, you must do something exceptional.

Not just survive the Dip, but use the Dip as an opportunity to create something so extraordinary that people can’t help but talk about it, recommend it, and yes, choose it.

The next time you catch yourself being average when you feel like quitting, realize that you have only two good choices: Quit or be exceptional. Average is for losers.

The Dip, Seth Godin

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