Wednesday, 4 May 2011

You tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is, never try.

- Homer Simpson. 

I am a chronic quitter. Seriously, here is a list for you:
  • Piano: I quit because the lady who taught me was mean - she would yell "NO" at me whenever I hit a wrong note
  • Karate: I got up to white belt, yellow tip (basically the lowest besides the white belt alone). 
  • Tennis: wasn't good at serving
  • Japanese: The teacher was mean
  • Drama: I don't remember why I quit this one, apparently I'm quite adept at being dramatic (I'm sure Husband would agree!)
  • Debating: I only wanted to be first-affirmative speaker (so basically just doing a speech without any debating)
  • Swimming: I didn't like diving (I can actually swim, but never did learn how to dive properly, belly flops all the way)
  • Hockey: Well I actually liked hockey, but I dislocated my knee during the first game. That sure was painful, and awkward. An ambulance had to come take me off the field. Maybe one day I'll play it again.
  • There is actually more, but this is starting to be embarrassing and I think you get the point.

I think my problem is, I'm quite good at rationalising my way out of things, so I can always feel justified for quitting. The most recent thing I quit, was learning how to drive. I know. I'm old and I don't know how to drive, what's with that? Believe me you're not the first person to ask. And you definitely won't ever be the person who asks the most often (Husband gets that title). Well mostly I didn't get it earlier because I was catching the train into the city for uni, and I wouldn't be driving there even if I had a license (and this is still the case). Also, in what seems to be a recurring theme - the last time I got lessons the instructor was mean! 

While I do feel bad about some of the things I've quit, I was once told something that really encouraged me: Don't think of it as quitting, think of it as crossing off something on your list you thought you should try. This was a successful venture, because now you've learned it's not for you. This means you're closer to the thing you're supposed to be doing. 

The one thing I've never seriously considered quitting though is uni. I've wanted to do psychology ever since I was 15 (I read a psych textbook and loved it - I know, NERD), and for some reason this one stuck. So I'm not a famous piano player, karate-r, tennis star, linguist etc. but I truly am happy doing what I am now. If I had to quit all those other things to get here, so be it.

Though I doubt this argument really counts for driving so I guess I'll have to give that another go... sigh. 


  1. Ahhh I am the same way.

    I quit figure skating because I was supposed to learn how to do some trick I couldn't do the first day it was taught.

    I quit softball because my dad wouldn't buy me my own helmet and the team helmets were too big.

    etc., etc., etc! But I like the point you made about trying all that stuff until you found what you liked. I'm a PhD student like you and there's no way I'm not quitting that crap. And probably, if you saw more of a NEED to drive, you'd learn. :]

  2. Hahahaha you crack me up! I can totally talk myself out of or into anything too!

    Thanks for your sweet comments on my blog about the slow need to pull yours out and try it!

  3. I think as long as you don't quit EVERYTHING (read: You still have hobbies/interests/activities/pick up new things from time to time), then quitting things you dislike is completely acceptable behavior.

  4. You're not quitting, you're on a journey of self-discovery :)


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