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Stopping Versus Quitting

Catherine Friend, up close and personal with a sheep.
Catherine Friend, up close and personal with a sheep.

Recently I have been reading a book called “Sheepish.”

Yes, it is all about sheep.

Being more of a “bird person” myself, I have never spent too much time thinking about sheep. Or cows. Or even chickens (reason being, while technically they do fall into the ‘bird’ category, the easiest place to find one in my urban city of millions is in those little egg crate packages in the supermarket).

The author, Catherine Friend, is a bona fide farmer. Or rather, her partner, Melissa, is a bona fide farmer. Catherine is what she herself calls a “backup farmer.” For this reason, in “Sheepish” and elsewhere, Catherine often finds herself less than fully prepared for some of farming’s unique challenges (a hint – she mentions the word “placenta” a lot in the text. The word “castration” comes up fairly regularly too).

Near the end of this fabulous book, Catherine writes about farming and life,

She makes an excellent point.I finally figure out that persistence is a choice. It helps to admit that quitting is an option, a decision writers face every day. David Bayles and Ted Orlando make an important point about persistence in their book, ‘Art and Fear:’ ‘Quitting is fundamentally different from stopping. Quitting happens once. Quitting means not starting again….”¬†

She makes an excellent point.

In my own life, I have found that quitting is absolutely the right decision in some situations. In other situations, it is the worst decision in the world.

As well, I have often found there are moments when I am not sure whether quitting is the right choice to make. In these instances, stopping for awhile can give me some insight about which path to take.

The important thing is to remember that it is my choice. Quitting, not quitting, stopping, not stopping, starting again, not starting again, starting again now or starting again later – it is all my choice.

And if I make the wrong choice, I can also change that too.

Today’s Takeaway: How do you feel about quitting? Have you ever found yourself saying “I quit!” only to then find yourself doing that-thing-you-thought-you-had-quit again the next day? Are there things in your life you want to quit but haven’t quite been able to yet – or things you really want to quit that are also dear to your heart? How are you working towards resolving these dilemmas? Does it help to remember that quitting – or not quitting – is your choice?


Stopping Versus Quitting

Shannon Cutts

Parrot, tortoise & box turtle mama. Writer. Author. Songwriter. Champion of all people (and things) recovered and recovering.

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APA Reference
Cutts, S. (2019). Stopping Versus Quitting. Psych Central. Retrieved on July 4, 2020, from


Last updated: 29 Mar 2019
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