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Portrait of beautiful black woman wearing a yellow top and smiling rounded frame

When It’s Time to Quit — From Lindsey’s Desk, October

That’s it, I quit!

I’m done.

I AM DONE.

I’m done trying to make change when there is no certainty about where we will be next year, hell, even next month.

I’m done trying to solve problems when it feels like other people just whine and complain and take no ownership for themselves, or just can’t be pleased.

I’m done busting my ass when it feels like everything is falling to shit around me.


I’m done.


I ammmmmm donnnnnnneeeeee!!!


I’m just so tired.

“Burnt out” doesn’t even describe it.

Burnt out is something I was back when things were normal.

I just want someone to tell me what I’m supposed to do.

Tell me what to do and I’ll do it.

Just so I don’t have to put out one more fire.

Just so I don’t have to navigate one more tough conversation that seems to have no clear point. No solution reached. Just dredging up more mud.

Please just let me curl up in my pajamas, and go to sleep!!!!

I QUIT!!!!!!!!!!

 

*****

 

If you have thought some version of this in the past 24 hours, 3 months, 2 years… you are not the only one. Believe me when I tell you that you are not alone. And please hear me when I tell you that you are not wrong for thinking or feeling this way. 

One of the most insidious traps of white supremacy culture is the egoic trap of needing to pretend we have it all figured out, all of the time, and do not need help or support to transverse tough situations. That we should somehow “have it all together,” or at least constantly seem to.

Not only do you need help and support as a leader, colleague, partner, parent, child or citizen throughout this time, you might very well need expert support to process everything going on (from a therapist, coach, or other professional guide). This could be the best gift you can give yourself.

I know this to be true because I waded through my own struggles with perfectionism to get the expert support that I need.

As we go into October, here’s what I am thinking about:

 

  1. Quit while you are ahead — It has taken many, MANY years to practice this, but finally I have cultivated a strong practice of walking away from my desk when I sense that there is no joy in my work.

    The old messaging of, “there is not enough time to get everything done,” and “just push through until the weekend” always tries to break through, but the fact is: I work better and more efficiently when I come to my desk with joy and energy.

    So I’ve learned to quit mindfully while I am ahead, so as to avoid quitting unsatisfactorily when I hit the wall of exhaustion.

  2. Stop pretending you are an expert in everything — If someone already wrote the book on All The Things including how to navigate a global pandemic, implement a perfect DEIA strategy, stem the flow of the employee exodus, strategize for the planet we will live on in ten to twenty years’ time, and ‘balance’ work, life, love, and family… please send it my way.

    #following

    But if my sneaking suspicion is correct and that book does not yet exist… then choose different experts to help you with different pieces of the pie.

  3. Take twenty minutes this week and write a list of things you CAN quit — Recently my list included everything from my daily walk, to apologizing for being a confident, intelligent, Black woman. You can read more about it in the chapter of Coonoor Behal’s book, I Quit, that features my story and so many other powerful stories of quitting.

    There are some powerful things that you can quit, today, right now, that are the strange collateral for the beauty of these ever-changing times.

 

As we enter into Autumn and begin the cycle of loss and renewal, what are the things that you are going to let fall away? 

I welcome hearing from you.

And remember, loves:

Diversity is the norm. 

LTHJ