Ep #251: When It’s Okay to Give Up

The Widowed Mom Podcast Krista St-Germain | When It’s Okay to Give Up

There’s nothing like spousal or partner loss to make us reassess our priorities and get back in touch with what we truly want.

But what do you do when you decide you no longer want to pursue something, and you’ve got that voice in your head saying, “Don’t be a quitter, you should or have to do this?”

Join me this week to hear why you might be struggling to give up on something you no longer want, and discover four questions that will give you a renewed sense of clarity around your decision.

Listen to the Full Episode:

If you want to create a future you can truly get excited about even after the loss of your spouse, I invite you to apply for Mom Goes On.

 

What You’ll Learn from this Episode:

  • Why you might be resistant to giving up something you no longer want.
  • How I see widows struggling with the decision to give up on something.
  • 4 questions to ask yourself about pursuing something you want to give up on.

 

Featured on the Show:

  • Leave me a review in Apple Podcasts.
  • Interested in small-group coaching? Join us in Mom Goes On. Click here for details and next steps.
  • Join my free Facebook group, The Widowed Mom Podcast Community.
  • Follow me on Instagram!
  • If you are a Life Coach School certified coach, I’m working on an Advanced Certification in Grief and Post-Traumatic Growth Coaching just for you. If this sounds like something you would love, email us to let us know you want in on the interest list to be notified when it launches!
  • I send out several pick-me-up emails each week including announcements and details for free live coaching sessions. Enter your email in the pop-up on my home page to sign up.
  • Watch the podcast on YouTube!

 

Full Episode Transcript:


Welcome to The Widowed Mom Podcast, episode 251, When It’s Okay to Give Up.

Welcome to The Widowed Mom Podcast, the only podcast that offers a proven process to help you work through your grief, to grow, evolve, and create a future you can truly look forward to. Here’s your host, Master Certified life coach, grief expert, widow, and mom, Krista St-Germain.

Hey there, welcome to another episode of the podcast. Got back from Costa Rica not too long ago. Had a really nice time with my daughter but also it was 50/50. Some things went amazing, some things not so great. My poor dad got parasites while we were there. Some interesting flight challenges. My daughter’s bike got stolen. But also I got to hear howler monkeys for the first time.

I saw a sloth climb through the restaurant we were eating at and if you all don’t know, I am kind of obsessed with sloths. I also learned that I like three fingered sloths more than two fingered sloths. And they’re not three toed sloths because did you know that both two fingered and three fingered sloths have three toes? I did not. But I have learned this. I know, you think you’re tuning into the podcast to hear about grief and I tell you about sloths in Costa Rica but it was actually a really good trip.

If you are not getting emails from me you should go to coachingwithchrista.com and you should sign up for emails. And it’s pretty easy to do because when you get to the website pretty much on any page you end up on, if you wait long enough, a little popup box will appear and you can put your name and email address in there. And then I’ll start sending you emails. But I send out a lot of really helpful emails, thought provoking emails, interesting perspectives about what I’m learning and things I wish I had known about grief. And I want to make sure you know about it.

And I actually just wrote a couple of emails about the crazy things that happened in Costa Rica and what they taught me about grief. So if you’re not getting them, you can go get them. They’re free. It’s fun for me to do that. But I’m glad to be back. It feels like spring, who knows in Kansas, wait two seconds and it’ll snow again. But it feels like we’re headed towards spring. I have lots of things going on that I’m excited about and it was a great trip, glad I took it. Also glad to be back.

So okay, let’s talk about when it’s okay to give up. I wanted to do this episode because I have a lot of coaching conversations with people, widows inside of Mom Goes On where they are wondering whether or not it’s okay to give up. How long do they keep going on something? And I think it’s such an interesting question and maybe one that you’re struggling with too, or if you’re not, come back to this when you are, maybe it will help you struggle less in the future.

But here’s what I often see and then I’m going to give you a few questions that you can ask yourself that I think will be helpful. So it’s okay to give up if it was your person’s dream and not yours. There are lots of widows holding themselves responsible for fulfilling a dream that was not theirs, for fulfilling a dream that their person had. So maybe their person had a business. Maybe their person had a property that they loved. Maybe they had some vision that was really important to them. Maybe it was really important to them to live in a particular place.

It was, they had a dream, they had something that they wanted that was important to them. But just because it was important to them, it was their dream, that doesn’t mean that we have to keep holding onto it. It’s okay to give that up. There’s so much suffering that comes unnecessarily when we keep trying to keep someone else’s dream alive when we don’t really want to do it.

And sometimes the reason that we’re trying is because we think that if we don’t, we’ll feel guilty and maybe we would, but listen, the reason we would isn’t because we stopped pursuing their dream. The reason we would feel guilty if we gave up on something that wasn’t our dream in the first place is simply because of the mean thing we would say to ourselves. We would say something like, “You didn’t love them enough or you should have been smarter. You should have been able to figure it out. You’re a quitter.”

We would say something mean to ourselves about giving up on our person’s dream. And that’s the reason we would feel bad and we don’t have to do that. You don’t have to do that. If they wanted something in life and you’re still trying to pursue it but it wasn’t yours, and you don’t really want it, it’s okay to give up. I actually think it’s kind of cruel not to give up. It’s not fair to you and to what you want and to the dreams that you allow yourself to live into in the next chapter to keep pursuing something that you don’t genuinely want to pursue.

So if it was their dream and it’s not yours and you don’t want it, it’s okay to give up. If it was your shared dream, you were fully on board with it, but it’s no longer aligned with what you want, it’s okay to give up. Maybe you had a dream about the traveling that you were going to do but you don’t want to do that anymore, maybe you don’t want to do it. You’re not wrong for not wanting to do it. And just because it was something that you imagined you would do as a couple, that doesn’t mean you have to keep doing it. It’s okay to give that up, if it’s not aligned with what you really want.

And just quite frankly, if you’re spending time pursuing something that you just don’t want, even I don’t care if you ever wanted it, if you don’t want it now, it’s okay to give it up because what you want matters. And every time you say yes to something you don’t want, you’re essentially saying no to something you do want. Every time you say yes to something you don’t want, you’re essentially saying no to something you do want.

So if you’ve got a little voice that’s saying, “Don’t be a quitter. You can’t give up. You have to do this, you should do this”, and you don’t genuinely want to do it, you can give up. Give yourself permission to give up. And here are the questions that I want you to ask yourself.

Number one, do I truly want this? Do I truly want this? And let yourself answer honestly. Notice what happens in your body when you ask yourself that question, do I truly want this? Not even what happens in your mind, what happens in your body when you ask yourself that, do I truly want this?

Number two, is this desire coming from an internal pull or an external push? Do I feel pulled towards this thing or does it feel like I’m being pushed from the outside? I love that question because sometimes it can help us figure out, am I doing this because of something outside of me that really isn’t aligned, or am I doing this because I have this genuine desire coming up from inside of me? So do I truly want this? Is this desire coming from an internal pull or an external push?

Question three, what would giving up on this open up for me? What would giving up on this open up for me? I have actually been toying with something that I want to give up and this was a question that was very useful to me in making that decision. What would giving up on this open up for me? Because sometimes it’s so easy to be in the doing and the problem solving and the trying and the quest that we don’t really let ourselves contemplate, what else would we do with that time if we weren’t pursuing this thing that we don’t really want to pursue?

If we actually gave up on it and let ourselves off the hook because we don’t really want to do it anymore, what else might we do with that energy and that effort and that time? What would open up? And then if you’re still feeling any resistance after all of this, ask yourself this question. If I allowed myself to give up on this, could I be kind to myself? If I allowed myself to give up on this, could I be kind to myself? And if the answer is no, that’s something you can change.

If the answer is no, you’re fairly certain that your inner critic would pop up and tell you some mean things, would shame you, would blame you, would offer you some mean feeling thoughts. And I want to remind you that that is not the truth of who you are. You don’t have to listen. Your inner critic is not you. In Mom Goes On we do a lot of inner critic work for this reason, because we have to separate ourselves from that voice. It is entirely possible for all of us to speak kindly to ourselves.

It is entirely possible, if you genuinely want to stop pursuing something, to give up, it is entirely possible for you to do that in a way that feels kind and loving but it’s going to be hard to do it until you figure that out. So chances are really high if you’re feeling resistance to it, it’s probably because you don’t yet have the skill of speaking kindly to yourself. You don’t yet have the skill of differentiating the voice that is that inner critic from you, you’re just used to listening to it.

Alright, so do I truly want this? Is this desire coming from an internal pull or an external push? What would giving up on this open up for me? And if I allowed myself to give up on this, could I be kind to myself? Because truly, there is nothing like spousal loss to help us re-evaluate our priorities. There is nothing like spousal loss or partner loss to help us get back in touch with what we want and to realize that life is short and precious.

And I just want to offer that if there’s something you’ve been telling yourself, you can’t give up on, you have to pursue but you don’t want it because it was their dream and not yours. Or it was a shared dream but it’s no longer aligned with what you want, or you just don’t want it anymore then you can say no. And you can give up and you can be so, so proud of yourself for doing that because it might be harder to give it up than to keep pursuing it in some ways. You can be so, so proud of yourself for doing that.

And then let yourself dream about the next thing that you actually do want because that’s available to all of us. Okay, that’s what I have for you this week. Listen, if you haven’t applied for Mom Goes On, I hope that you will. I genuinely want you to have that program. It is amazing. I’m recording this and it will release on the 18th of March, which means there might still be spots available for the small group that starts in April and now would be a great time to apply.

You can go to coachingwithkrista.com/workwithme and you’ll see the application there, it takes five minutes. You’ll know very quickly whether it’s a good fit for you or not and I encourage you to do it. I want you to have it if you want it. Alright, I love you, you’ve got this. Take care and I’ll see you next week, bye bye.

If you like what you’ve been hearing on this podcast and want to create a future you can truly get excited about even after the loss of your spouse, I invite you to join my Mom Goes On coaching program. It’s small group coaching just for widowed moms like you where I’ll help you figure out what’s holding you back and give you the tools and support you need so you can move forward with confidence. Please don’t settle for a new normal that’s less than what you deserve. Go to coachingwithkrista.com and click Work With Me for details and next steps. I can’t wait to meet you.

Enjoy The Show?

Share This Post

colored line

Get my 10 minute Free Video and Learn:

colored line
Krista St-Germain Avatar
About your coach

I created a new life using small, manageable steps and techniques that made sense. The changes I experienced were so profound I became a Master Certified Life Coach and created a group coaching program for widows like us called Mom Goes On. It’s now my mission to show widowed moms exactly how to do what I’ve done and create a future they can look forward to.

colored line