Perseverance and Stupidity

I’ve been listening to a friend talk about his dealings with a lady he works with. It’s been an ongoing conversation. I don’t know her. I only see her situation from what he’s told me.

The Situation from my Eyes

Beginning this year, let’s call her Susie (not to protect her, I just honestly can’t remember her name right now), Susie has tackled an enormous work list for a non-profit. Her boss is condescending and doesn’t connect with her at all. He refuses to let her out of anything described in the original job agreement, even when it means Susie is spending weekends and nights to finish projects. She cries almost daily and is clearly frustrated with the environment and can’t keep up with the demands. My friend now says her boss is going to give her the option of being terminated immediately or stepping down slowly.

My Takeaway

Susie has felt horrible in this position since the start, but she’s clearly a determined woman who will not give up. I find myself admiring that perseverance and tenacity, but simultaneously feel like she’s a bonehead for wasting her time and energy on something that is hurting her life.

I would have given up this position long before now. Does that make me fickle? Or smart?

I think it’s smart to walk away from things that hurt us emotionally. It’s damaging to stay in that place. But I also have respect for people who see the end goal and stick through the hard times to get there. How do you determine if it’s worth it?

A question I’m definitely still working through, especially in regards to career and clients, not to mention relationships in general. Sometimes I need to push through the rough patch to get to the gold (quite literally when it comes to freelance!) And sometimes I need to step and recognize that I can’t change whatever the problem is and it is time to walk away.

Your Challenge

Stop telling people to never give up. Perseverance is admirable, but change is growth. Walking away can be healthy. If it’s time, don’t be stupid. Whatever it is that’s stopping you from pursuing what you actually need to be doing, let it go.

If you’re thinking of giving up, but you know it’s something you love, something you need to be doing–don’t you dare give up. It’s hard. It sucks. It hurts. Do it anyway. Because the hard, sucky, hurting part will pass. And you’ll be left with something for which you can be truly proud.


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