Is Quitting Right for You? (Guest Post)

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Is Quitting Right for You?

by Steph Beth Nickel

When should you set aside responsibilities? When should you press on? How do you decide?

My absence from Janet’s blog may or may not have been conspicuous, but when January and February slipped away, I had to ask myself, “Is this what God has for me going forward?”

Is this the only responsibility that has slipped? Absolutely not!

Since the time change—in the fall—tiredness and lack of motivation seem to have wrapped their arms (or is that tentacles?) around me.

Being an Expressive, I am among the group least likely to be overly concerned about missed deadlines. Not great when there are so many mandatory and “soft” deadlines in my life.

When Janet suggested I pray to see if God would have me continue writing for Tenacity, I thanked the Lord for friends such as her. No pressure, just concern that I follow the Lord’s path for my life.

So, how do we determine which responsibilities to take on and which ones to set aside? As Christians, we can ask the Lord for wisdom and direction—and He will give it.

Second, it’s a good thing to create a list of everything we do and prioritize the items on our list.

Some items on our list are mandatory—our day job and taking care of family for instance. However, when reviewing the remaining To Do items, we may want to determine which ones we feel called to and which we’re passionate about.

Now, if you’re eclectically interested, as I am, it may be hard to rank these in order of priority, which leads to the fourth thing we should do: be honest about our energy and abilities.

We may be skilled in many areas. We may be able to do a plethora of things each week, each day even. But can we do them well? Can we give them the time and attention they deserve? Can we do so without becoming exhausted and resentful? Can we do them without fear of burnout?

In humility we should ask, “Could someone else do this task? Could they do it more quickly and more efficiently than I can? Are they actually the right person for the job?”

I’m a little like Sister Bear from the Berenstain Bears. When my children were young, they watched and re-watched a video in which Sister Bear sang, “I want it all.” Truth be told, I’m like that. I suffer from what I call Butterfly Syndrome. I flit from thing to thing, claiming the whole garden as my own.

I’m like a plate spinner who tells herself, “Sure, the plate has slowed down … Sure, the pole is beginning to wobble … But I have lots of time to get to it before the fine china crashes to the floor.”

We must consider those who are counting on us.

Granted, I have some of the most understanding and forgiving friends, family, and clients in the world. Still, I have responsibilities to them, and if I can’t meet them, perhaps it’s time to set some of them aside—the responsibilities, not the people.

Last, but definitely not least, we must consider our Why.

Let’s go over that list we made item by item and determine why we’ve taken on each thing. When we know what motivates us, it helps us determine which items must stay on the list and which we can—and should—set aside.

Does this mean it will be easy? No. Often the things we’d prefer to set aside are actually the things that need our time and attention most.

Will I continue writing monthly posts for this blog? I hope so. But I’ll see after I prayerfully follow my own advice.

How do you determine what tasks to take on? Are there those that must go? Which tasks on your list make you want to jump out of bed in the morning (or stay up late) to accomplish?


Steph Beth Nickel
Steph Beth Nickel (Photo by Stephen G. Woo Photography)
Photo credit: Jaime Mellor Photography

Steph Beth Nickel is a freelance editor and writer and an author. If you would like more information about her services, you can contact her at

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5 thoughts on “Is Quitting Right for You? (Guest Post)

  1. Janet Sketchley Post author

    Thank you, Stephanie. As always, you find a post topic that speaks to me. Love the “why” part of these questions, because it brings back my perspective. Now to sit with some tea and think about this!

    1. Stephanie Nickel

      Discovering our genuine Why? isn’t always easy. And “just ‘cuz” really isn’t an answer. 😉

  2. Bobbi Junior

    Steph, you’re singing the song the Lord has been trying to get me to sing for a year now.

    Two things he’s taught me.
    1. If I don’t make a hole, then His chosen person can’t fill it. (Which means sometimes I need to step away without knowing how the need will be filled. That’s hard.)
    2. If my energy is caught up in to-dos and flitting, there is no time for heart-felt prayer and for listening for His still, small voice. (And that’s a dangerous place to settle into!)

    I’m reassessing too. Praying as you seek His guidance as well.

    1. Stephanie Nickel

      Isn’t it the truth, Bobbi?

      With that said, it’s far easier to write a post like this than to take my own advice and actually live it out. Perhaps, I need to read my own words from time to time … and prayerfully put them into practice.

      Thanks so much for taking the time to reply, Bobbi.

      May God grant you the courage and wisdom to know when it’s right to “quit.”


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