Do not Quit!

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Sometimes, life lessons can come from the most unlikely places. It is strange now when I think of it how as an after-thought so many nuggets of wisdom have come to me in life, those which I cherish and pass on to my son who is going to be thirteen soon. It’s a wonderful feeling when you know someone looks up to you with so much trust and expectation that you feel you ought to keep putting in your best to ensure that you continue to inspire him always.

Of the many things that we spoke about this week, I recall sharing my own moments of defeat and loss with him. Losing challenges, losing battles, losing arguments and losing peace of mind, but more than anything losing my enthusiasm to keep striving to be the best in all that I do. The reason we spoke about this was because he is now getting to a point when his failings are beginning to frustrate him. He has moments of inner turmoil that is part of his growing up anyway and then, coupled with self-introspection, he too tends to be a little hard on himself, somewhat similar to what I’ve been in the past.

The words I said to him were also meant for me as a reminder, because, let’s face it, even the bravest and the most positive person amongst us, has good days and bad days, and these are the words one needs on a bad day, when the inner reserves of positivity appear to be gone. I said to him –

“Sometimes, we need to pause for a while and take a break from whatever it is that we are doing. It is okay to step back and take stock of the situation, recharge ourselves and even grieve for what is gone or irretrievably lost or broken forever. Only make sure it doesn’t end there. Because falling is fine, but we must learn to pick ourselves too. That is precisely the decisive moment when we ought to pull ourselves up by all that we have- our muscles, nerves and sinew and the rest, to get back on our feet. Giving up can never ever be an option in life.”

Leaving you with some wise words from Muhammad Ali that might come in handy for many of us:

Only a man who knows what it is like to be defeated can reach down to the bottom of his soul and come up with the extra ounce of power it takes to win when the match is even.

What are the two things you do to pull yourself up from despair and loss? Are you the type of person who will pause to take a break or do you fight it out there and then?


Linking up with #MondayMusings, hosted by Corinne Rodrigues

and #mg hosted by Mackenzie Glanville

13 thoughts

  1. Really thought provoking. My daughter is almost thirteen too. She looks up to me and I constantly feel the responsibility and privilege to guide her and be a role model. I think stopping and reflecting are hugely important, we all need a moment to pause, in order to fight another day. #mg

  2. Great post as always. It’s so easy to say do not quit but when it comes to facing the reality, it’s the hardest. I have had many brushes with failure and at times I haven’t quit but I have also known that it’s better to quit. I think life gives us both chances.

    1. Thanks much, Parul. I know what you mean. I believe wisdom lies in deciding when to fight on and when to pull back. That’s key to happiness I feel. You’re right, life does give us both chances.Totally up to us how we take it forward.

    1. Glad to hear this, Sanch. Easy to speak about not giving up when the going gets tough but very hard to practice and yes, kids learn best when they see you do it, so parenting does test your grit when you try and teach them stuff like this.

  3. I grumble for a while, then I cry (depending on the severity of the loss/failing), then I speak it out with my mum or my bestie and then when both these women have drilled some sense into me, or after I myself realise how futile crying/moping is, I pick myself up, pull myself together and then try and think of Plan B. I realised it sometime ago, that in life, we will always need a Plan B; what if Plan A doesn’t work out, we don’t want to be left stranded, isn’t it? I am not always this brave, and there are times I just crumble. But, eventually, I do pick myself up, thankfully! 🙂 How long can one keep crying over spilt milk?

  4. Thought provoking post, Esha. Sometimes, I keep going at it with the frustration and despair that accompanies me when I fail. At other times, I step back. The only thing I try to do is to never give up. I love that you said it’s okay to grieve too. That is what we forget sometimes that it’s okay to feel bad and even shed a tear or two. The only thing as you say is we should not quit as long as it is something we really want to do.

    1. I’m dealing with this a lot of the times these days and it’s not just me. My son has been getting into this phase pretty often now and frustrations are bad when they continue to make a home within their little hearts. A reminder that serves us both these days. Grieving is something I can do easily now but couldn’t earlier and I can see how it makes accepting things a lot easier. That’s what I’m trying to teach him too.

  5. I am always inspired by your powerful writing Esha. I remember being harsh on myself while I failed at some tasks but I learned to rise again and adapted “never give up” motto in my Life. My Mother was the source of my motivation. She still is. A powerful quote. Lines which you said to him -are a reminder to each one of us. Happy to read #mg

  6. It’s such an inspiring post, Esha when such things frustrate us to no end and when we lose our sleep, flushing in negative energy. It’s good of you to share with him as it’s his age to go through such things and learning. I still face it with things happening five years back and drive myself to the wall. Life is a daily morning battle where we need to wage our war.

  7. What great advice to give your son. I strongly believe you should never give up on the things that are important to you, but sometimes you also need to recognise that it’s ok to let go of the things that are unimportant so that you can focus your energy more positively x

  8. its an interesting question. I’ve always thought of myself as a “know when to hold them, know when to fold them” type person. I think how hard I fight is very situationally dependent #mg

    1. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this. I agree we all tend to have our unique ways of facing such situations. I’ve seen myself change in my responses over the years so I can see what you mean. Thanks for stopping by Jeremy.

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