Sunday, March 10, 2013

When Do You Say When?

Photo: Unknown Source
I've had a few conversations lately with friends and co-workers about "When is enough, enough?" When should you throw in the towel and discontinue whatever path you are currently on?

Perhaps it is a decision with a hobby. Have you invested hundreds of dollars to take up this new adventure and somewhere along the way you just sort of lost interest? Do you toy with the idea of just moving on, or do you feel some sort of guilt due to the money you invested?

Maybe you have a talent, a true God-given talent, and you could choose to pursue that route in your life, but you've lost interest or maybe it's just too difficult.

Perhaps it's a job you are currently in. You find yourself going through the day to day motions, but that passion, that spark that once set you on fire is now fizzling out and all of you can think of is how different your life would be if you made some changes.

Finally, the hardest one of all, is deciding whether or not to continue a relationship with either a friend or partner. I know we have all found ourselves in that situation where you have put more into the friendship/partnership than the other person has. Are you the one who always checks in on the friend? Does that friend always dictate where you go/what you do/how long you hang out? How about that partner - does he/she support your dreams? Do they treat you with the same respect you give them? Do they truly make you feel loved?

These are questions we all ponder. When the fizzle of passion for a hobby, a talent, a job, a friendship or a partner begins to dwindle - we have to stop and ask ourselves what is the root of the problem here? Is it me? Is it them? Is it just God's way of saying, "Your work is done here."

It's hard to decide when to say when

I was skimming through a book I picked up at the library last week called, "Taking Out Your Emotional Garbage," by Georgia Shaffer. The author basically encourages you to "toss and recycle" your emotions, keep life-affirming ones, and discard the ones that hinder healthy relationships.  She shares real-life scenarios in a wide variety of situations and I am sure you would nod your head, like I did, through out the book. We've all been there. 

One suggestion she gave was to give it up to God. Now that may look different for you, maybe releasing whatever feelings you have and seeing how it feels, but for me it is to give this to God. I have a few places in my life where I need to do this, as I am sure you need to in some areas of your life. The trick is to not feel guilty for feeling like you can't fix the situation. Forgive yourself and the other person/coworker/yourself if it is a guilt/hobby thing for whatever may have put you in this situation. Finally, be patient. You will know when the time is right. 

In some areas of my life I have tried two tactics. I have tried slowly moving forward, and seeing how it feels, seeing how it changes my perspective. Then I have tried resolving the issue. Attempting to heal what may have been broken. Now that is the hardest one to do. 

I suppose I am at a point where if I can't fix it and it won't heal on its on, I have no choice but to give it to God and pray that the sign will be clear. Sometimes we are paralyzed with making big decisions. Things change, people change - and I like to be patient and let those changes occur. However... the question still remains... when do you say when?


Robyn Burke said...

this is a toughie... nobody likes to be a quitter. But when it comes to relationships (and it all comes down to relationships in some form) maybe the question is has the other side done the quitting already? Hmmm... not sure I like that question!!! I did want to suggest another great read called "Necessary Endings" by Dr. Henry Cloud. My husband and I found this to be very helpful as we navigated some tough choices awhile back. Cloud also has some great books co-authored with Townsend on Boundaries which can also be helpful in helping us determine when to say when. Good luck Nicole--- better yet-- praying!!

Tesha Vann said...

That is not an easy question or easy to answer.
Hope you find peace soon.


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