In order to be really successful at anything in life, you need to be committed and invested.
Invested in the end result.
You have to be committed to do the work, without the instant gratification. Day in, day out… consistently.
You need to be in it for the long haul.
I’ve never really been fully invested or committed to anything in my life.
I give in.
Sounds bad… in fact, it sounds a lot worse than it is.
But it explains a lot!
As a child, I had plenty of hobbies. I played various instruments and had ice skating lessons for years. Ice skating lasted longer than the instruments, but it still fell through the cracks.
When asked “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I had a different answer every time. I had no idea!
And half of the stuff I wanted to say I daren’t for fear of being “weird”.
I developed one focus: school, college, university, job… that’s the “life plan” for most of us, but I had no idea what I wanted to do.
School was easy; they told me what to do.
I remember sitting in my college interview and talking through my choices, I had no reason why I’d picked the courses I had other than “they’d been recommended to me” – we sat in that office and changed my application.
A year later I still didn’t feel right, I sat my exams and never went back.
I felt so guilty that I didn’t even tell my mum I’d quit.
I spent the whole summer feeling bad for quitting, throwing away my future, not following through and going to University the way it had always been “destined”. I got a job instead.
It bugged me so much that I went back to college at 25, then on to University.
I was following through with the plan.
I quit again 2 and a half years later.
I decided that it wasn’t for me.
“Debbie never finishes anything. She doesn’t follow through. She has no drive”
Damn right I have no drive!
No drive to keep doing the things that DON’T and WON’T serve me!
No interest in carrying on down a path that’s NOT right for me, that won’t get me where I want to be!
That’s what I keep doing; following a path, then dropping the part that’s not right for me.
That’s why I don’t “follow through”
That’s why I suck at finishing things… because one thing leads to another.
I never thought when I went to college I’d quit.
I never thought I’d leave behind Maths, English Literature and ICT to design kitchens and bathrooms.
I never thought I’d get a decently paid office job then quit to go study Art and Design.
I never thought I’d get halfway through an Interior Design degree and realise I wasn’t actually interested in design.
I was more interested in the people the designs were meant for.
I was more interested in the business aspects; what made the business unique, how would they appeal to their customers, what made their customers tick?
I wasn’t expecting cultural studies and personal and professional development to be my favourite modules.
So I gave up, again, and again, and again.
But now, after years of quitting, years of guilt and shame, I see all this as a good thing.
Had I continued on that first path, or any of them, I would be bored and miserable. I would feel lost and confused, stuck in some job that I hated, just “going through the motions” day in day out. And for what? A paycheque? Waiting for “Happy hour” which, last I checked, was full of miserable people distracting themselves from their lives and jobs that they hated.
I’m not saying it’s been easy, far from it. I’ve had low points, it’s been hard, I’ve struggled. BUT I know for a fact that the struggle I’ve faced has been worth it.
The “sacrifices” I made along the way; the stuff I gave up, quit, walked away from… they were never really meant for me.
Those things would have slowly killed me.
And for all the things I haven’t been “fully invested” in, I can tell you for damn sure, the one thing I am…
My future, my long term happiness.
My determination to live my life my way.
So let me ask you… what are you invested in?
Are you a quitter like me?
What are you chasing?