Is it time to walk away?

I recently read in one of the books I carry around with me that walking away from whatever project you have on and returning to it with a clear mind will most likely help you finish the project better than persisting with it there and then. This isn’t rocket science, I know. But how come when we know this, we still persist with continuing with things until we’re tired both mentally and physically…?

It sometimes takes courage to decide to leave something for the time being and to come back to it later, sometimes at an undecided time. We want to move quick, to already be at the finish line, to have the results here and now. There is a love for finishing things, to get things done, one thing after another. It brings satisfaction, feeling of completion. However, doing this, do we forgot to appreciate the power of now? Sometimes the best ideas and the greatest achievements come when we’re present in the now. Not when we’re thinking about the end result and by when we want to finish something.

To take a rest from something, to allow yourself that break, to feel ok with saying “I don’t need to get this done right now”, that’s what we need to remind ourselves of. We say we know to to do so, but do we really live by it?


I’ve come across a great saying* a few times now which says that the time a rower has the oar out of the water is just as important as the time when the rower has the oar in the water. The rest in between the strokes is as important for how far we go as the strokes themselves.

We easily forget about the now, to just stop and let things be. Sometimes the right thing is to just walk away from your project. Taking time off now will certainly help you gain greater results in the long run.

“Knowing when to walk away, is wisdom. Being able to, is courage.”

Picture borrowed from, taken by Miruna Uzdris

*Found in Wink and Grow Rich by Roger Hamilton.

About Mia Berglund

4 responses to “Is it time to walk away?

  1. You are so intuitive. Sometimes it’s not always about taking a break but deciding to walk away altogether. It takes so much strength to evaluate that something may not be beneficial for you and so decide to close that chapter of your life…

    • Thank you sourcingdiva. Yes, if the project isn’t working for you at all, I agree that the choice to walk away altogether exists. However consider the possibility that sometimes it’s not a ‘good bye’, it’s a ‘see you later’ (in an indefinite future). What is then the difference between a ‘good bye’ and a ‘see you later’…that is the real question right? X

  2. Lisa

    According to a Swedish psychology professor there are four different ‘rooms’ of change; denial, confusion, inspiration, satisfaction. I think you would appreciate this theory. It’s a theory developed to help you understand change and why people react different to change. It’s a bit like what you are writing about in this post and earlier posts; Understanding the importance of sometimes letting yourself be satisfied for the moment, not always strive for the ‘next big thing’. But also the importance of having the courage to acknowledge things you are not satisfied with and actually do something about it. You can travel through these four rooms in only a couple of hours, or for several months, depending on what kind of change you are going through. It starts in the ‘denial room’ where you unconsciously deny the need of change of something. After a while this need surfaces and you can still be denying it, but now consciously. When you realise you need to do something about it you enter the ‘confusion room’. In this room you start looking for solutions, probably in a quite unstructured way, feeling stressed and really want to move on to get out of the confusion. Once you have found a path to follow you move on to the ‘inspiration room’ where you have all these positive ideas and finally a solution which inspire you to even more ideas. When you’re happy with your solution and feel that the change is done you enter the ‘satisfaction room’ and this is where you enjoy what you have succeeded to do and the result of it. A part of the theory is a kind of personality test you can do to understand why you react in certain ways in the different rooms and why you maybe rather stay in the denial room or rather hurry to the confusion room. I’ll try to send you this theory and test if you would be interested (I only have it on paper though).

    • Thank you for sharing Lisa! Now when we know this, how can we best use this knowledge to become more aware of who we are? Because, how cool wouldn’t it be to live your life in the inspiring room and eventually in the satisfaction room…? 😉 Now, how can I best make sure I discover the way there.

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