We grow up learning that quitting is bad. It’s ingrained in us at an early age. It carries a negative connotation, and we often fear the consequences of quitting. This isn’t always the case though. We need to take a closer look at the concept of quitting. There may be certain cases where quitting is the exact path you need to create space for what is right for you. It allows you to refocus in a different direction or commit to your vision. And I’m not just talking about quitting your job, I’m talking about a number of other things in life that are distracting you from your goals. Over the past few years, I’ve learned that taking the right approach to quitting has been one of the biggest keys to my success in commercial real estate and in life.
I started my career working for a large private commercial real estate developer. I spent a handful of years there, gaining valuable experience, but I eventually concluded that to achieve my most important personal goals, I needed to quit. So, I did, and I started SimonCRE. I also decided to invest in a tech company called One Stop Voice. At the time, I was just 25 years old and I thought I could do anything and everything. I also got heavily involved with multiple charities, boards, and organizations. I was ready to conquer the world.
I was taking part in important charities and organizations, and having a great time doing it. These were tremendous opportunities in my life, and I wanted to be great at everything. But I soon found out that I didn’t have the time or capacity to truly be great at any of them. I had stretched myself too thin. I took a step back and started to put everything into perspective. I started to align where I was at and what my end goals were.
So it was about three years ago that I made the conscious decision to quit the things that weren’t propelling me towards my ultimate goals. I knew that I couldn’t just set those goals, I had to look at the commitments and the focus that it was going to take to reach those goals. So I made the difficult decision to start quitting the activities and organizations that weren’t completely focused around my true ambition. One of the biggest decisions was quitting OneStop Voice and deciding to sell the company.
And that’s when I started to see the success that I had hoped for. I spent more time focusing on what was really important to me, SimonCRE. The company grew from just a few employees doing a handful of projects every year, to a more than 20-person team building roughly $80-100 million worth of projects a year, and became one of the largest commercial real estate developers in the single-tenant space.
Quitting wasn’t easy. It’s never easy. Through it all, I learned it takes a strong mentality to make those decisions. And making those decisions isn’t some unspeakable action. You shouldn’t be afraid to quit something if it’s not getting you to your ultimate goal.
It’s important to remember that you don’t just flat out quit. You have to be straightforward with organizations, companies, and charities on why you’re quitting. And you also need to be straightforward when quitting bad relationships as well. You still have to be responsible and up-front with people. In doing so, you have to wind down, because ultimately, these are still commitments that you’ve made. With One Stop Voice, I needed to make sure the transition process was smooth. I needed to ensure that all my employees and customers were successfully transferred over, and that everyone was well taken care of. And that includes yourself.
Once you’ve mapped out your strategy and set your goals, take a look at your life and the things you’re involved with and ask yourself “are these things getting me to my end goal or my ultimate ambition?” If they’re not, I strongly suggest you look for where there is room to quit, because it can be good for you. Quitting is freeing and quitting is healthy for your mind and for your success. I found that moderation, focus on my ultimate goals, and quitting certain things, have lead to a healthy, happier, more successful life.