Knowing When to Quit

One of the hardest decisions for any individual is knowing when to quit. We only have so much time on this Earth so it’s important to review our activities and prune them periodically. Is it still worth your time? Are you throwing good money after bad or are you right on the cusp of a great breakthrough? Nowadays no one ever quits, they just pivot. But how do you even know when to pivot?

I’ve been thinking about this question for my various hobbies (art, music, game programming, writing, etc). It’s increasingly difficult to focus on all of them at once so it’s time for some pruning.

99u.com has a good start at answering this question of when to quit. They advise asking yourself the following:

  • Is it no longer fun?
  • Is it a lot of effort for little value?
  • Is it no longer worth the cost?

I think that’s a pretty good place to start. And it’s important not to get wrapped up in sunk costs. If it no longer makes sense then that’s your answer.

If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. Then quit. There’s no point in being a damn fool about it. -W. C. Fields