A few months ago, I came across this this blog post from Ron Martin: Hawaii's Premier Sales Resultant's blog regarding a sales job. You should check it out if you do Sales for a living...and if you don't.
...his points apply to almost all aspects of life. Besides, I feel like I am constantly trying to sell ideas to an unbelieving and questioning consumer(s). Consider the following sales pitches I make daily/weekly, and I don't even "do sales for a living:"
- "If you don't pick it up, you're not getting lunch."
- "Don't you want to take a bath?...look, I'll make cookies tonight."
- "Why don't we go to WalMart after the kids nap so that we don't have to deal with it at the store(!)"
"As much as we hate to have people quit and leave, it’s worse when they quit and stay."
This is my favorite snippet from Ron Martin's blog post. How many times have I started something, only to find halfway that it is not what I wanted to do, but stayed with it out of pride or fear of regret? Even if my instincts told me to "move on" or "change gears."
There's some principle I learned in an Economics class 15 years ago, that goes something like this:
'Ceasing to invest labor/materials/money in something that you foresee will not provide the results you had hoped is better than continuing it 'just because you want to finish it...' or something like that. I remember my professor saying that, for example, if a company's invested millions to build a high rise building and it looks certain 3/4 of the way through building it that the high rise will not be leased or used or bought, then they should stop building and pull out, even if they are near completion, because,' something like, 'losing even more money just to finish it isn't worth it...that money/time/materials could be used somewhere else.' Wow, what a foggy memory I have of Economics.
If it's something you don't want to give up on--your marriage, your faith, your job--something you're committed to keep with, but you feel like you have no more to give/your energy is fading/it is no longer invigorating like when you first set out/it is sucking the very life out of you/etc. (you know what I mean), then take the time to step back and re-assess your priorities. Maybe if you focus your energies on different areas than what you are now, you'll feel proud of it again. If you feel you don't have time to re-assess, ask yourself, "Do I really want to continue another day or week in this state of mind?"
"A wise [Chinese] man [I might add] once distinguished between “the noble art of getting things done” and “a nobler art of leaving things undone.” True “wisdom in life,” he taught, consists of “the elimination of non-essentials” (Lin Yutang, The Importance of Living [New York: Reynal and Hitchcock, 1937], 162, 10). May I suggest that you periodically evaluate how you are doing in this area? What are the nonessential things that clutter your days and steal your time? What are the habits you may have developed that do not serve a useful purpose? What are the unfinished or unstarted things that could add vigor, meaning, and joy to your life?" -LDS Apostle, President Dieter F. Uchtdorf.
"We become so caught up in the busyness of our lives. Were we to step back, however, and take a good look at what we’re doing, we may find that we have immersed ourselves in the 'thick of thin things.' In other words, too often we spend most of our time taking care of the things which do not really matter much at all in the grand scheme of things, neglecting those more important causes." -LDS Prophet, President Thomas S. Monson.
Some of the decisions I am most proud of, which have brought me lots of happiness, went against my sound reasoning (if I ever had any). I was surprised how easily my little precedents crumbled and were out the window when these "golden opportunities" presented themselves to me. I listened to my heart during these sometimes confusing times and am glad I did.