Part 1: Quitting what no longer serves you

July 31, 2022

Can quitting be positive? Is quitting a bad option? Why is quitting seen as a negative thing to do? Is it because of failure or fear?

In our blog, we explore quitting, the benefits of quitting, and although quitting is associated with failing, we explore how quitting can boost positive mental health. Let's reconsider the topic of quitting as a whole and see quitting from a different perspective.

Winners never quit. Stick it out. Get on with it. Just keep on going. Why quit now. Just do it. Prove them wrong. Preserve. Show them what you can do. Do not quit. To quit it is to fail.

Society advocates winners, conquerors, and a winner's mindset in comparison to quitters.  

In society and possibly from the beginning of time there is a strong positive view on winning contrasted with quitting. This view is that to win is to be the conqueror and to quit is to be defeated and fail. These messages filter through society even today. However, what if quitting can result in positive mental health? What if quitting something that no longer serves its original purpose turns out to be the winning thing to do? What if quitting proves beneficial, resulting in lowered anxiety levels, boosting confidence and self-esteem, and has a positive 'winning' impact on mental health?

According to, “mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices. Mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence through adulthood. Throughout your life, if you experience mental health problems, your thinking, mood, and behaviour could be affected. Many factors contribute to mental health, including, biological factors, such as genes or brain chemistry, life experiences, such as trauma or abuse, and family history of mental health problems."

Therefore, letting go of habits, negativity, environments, or situations that do not positively serve your emotional, psychological, and social well-being may have a positive influence on your mental health.

To quit means to cease or discontinue, to STOP and even to LEAVE. It is an action, a sign that change is needed and something is not working anymore. The act of quitting is a bold statement that something has built up to this moment. It is often seen as a flippant or desperate act, one where we didn't think it through and just acted it in the moment. But what if we quit with intention?

Making changes and letting go can feel like freedom and a weight off the shoulders to be able to follow other desires. For instance, this can be letting go of a habit, speaking to a therapist, or changing a stressful environment, which increases anxiety levels, or a habit that negatively affects your well-being and self-confidence.

We can quit things physically and mentally. Things that bring feelings of anger, frustration, hurt, anxiousness, or stress. You can quit all those things and choose a different path. Choosing the things, which inspire, motivate and encourage you. Because regardless of how it feels, not all quitting is bad, sometimes we need to get past the initial fear and guilt that might be holding us back. Reflecting, therapy and choosing to quit things that no longer serve you will positively impact your mental health and well-being.

Whilst discussing what can be a sensitive topic, it is important to remember everyone is different, seek a therapist if required, and it is important to carefully evaluate things before quitting to ensure that you are making the best decision for you in the moment and long-term. Also, it is important to contemplate the real reasons behind why you feel like quitting before making assured decisions. A simple way to do this is to make a list of pros and cons. When your done leave it and come back to it later, how do you feel about it now? Are there any tweaks you need to make to the list, have you listed any feelings as pro or con that you need to think about?

It can be tough getting started or even seeing change through, consult a psychotherapist professional services for support from a therapist. There are support lines available to help if you feel you are in need of urgent immediate support, including Samaritans, NSPCC, or Childline. You can visit our Urgent Help page here.

To enquire about Karin Young Counselling Services please get in touch with us here for more information on our psychotherapist services.

Photo by Joshua Abner