Mental Health 101: When Quitting Means Winning

For the most of my life, I believed that quitters were losers. My parents often said, “If you start something, make sure you stick to it no matter what.” So, I tried to sign up for activities that I genuinely liked to reduce the likelihood of throwing the white flag and giving up. Unfortunately, I miscalculated my actions when I went to college. 

I had a year to think about my major, but it was tough for me to decide. My parents didn’t want to suggest anything because they wanted me to make up my mind. On the last day of the decision-making process, I chose to enter the university’s Chemistry program.

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Why Chemistry, you might ask? I went with it because I excelled in the subject when I was still in high school. The second choice was Creative Writing, but my parents said it might not be ideal for financial reasons, so I didn’t pick it. 

During my first year as a Chemistry major student, I must admit how enjoyable it was. I met a lot of smart folks and learned so much from them. I even saw first-hand that having a high level of intelligence couldn’t turn you into a geek automatically. However, things changed when I failed a subject in my second year and had to retake it the next semester.

My interest in Chemistry began to wane at that point, but I didn’t tell another soul. I should have taken it as a sign that I was never meant to be a chemist, but I didn’t. Instead, I smiled through the whole thing and made my friends and family believe that I was still in the game. I said, “I will make sure to ace it next time around.”

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And I tried to make it happen, you know. I studied day and night; I only rested when I slept or ate or traveled. My parents asked if I was alright, and I always replied, “Yes.” I didn’t want to seem like a loser in anyone’s eyes, much less to my family.

Nevertheless, I eventually had to confront reality when I failed another subject in my junior year. It was a prerequisite for an elective subject that I wanted to take later, and failing meant that I’d have to extend my schooling for another semester. It sucked so bad; I could barely hide my self-disappointment to my loved ones. At the same time, that’s when I felt that majoring in Chemistry was not my destiny. Still, I could not let my parents know that I wanted to quit and find another path for myself because I was afraid of hearing them say, “I didn’t know we raised a loser.” So, for a few months, I forced myself to continue my studies.

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Deciding To Quit

‘Forced’ was the most appropriate term to describe what I did because I felt so down and didn’t want to do anything. Little did I know, I was going to classes less and less. Sometimes, I would wake up before class and come up with excuses to avoid attending it. Whenever my friends would call and ask where I was, I lied and told them that I was stuck in traffic or ill. My alibis became so ridiculous that my professors threatened to flunk me immediately if I didn’t go back to school at once.

Well, it wasn’t a huge pile of schoolwork that made me decide to quit studying at that moment. Instead, it was the fact that I didn’t care if I flunked all my classes. I was too numb to worry about what my parents would say once they learned about it, too. I knew then that I was done with Chemistry; if I forced myself to study further, I might die (literally).

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When Quitting Means Winning

I went straight to my parents’ house to tell them what had been happening to me and what I had been feeling for a while. Looking back, I wasn’t sure if it was a smart move, considering I didn’t come up with any plan. I merely thought that it was better if they heard the bad news from me directly.

To my surprise, my parents started crying and hugged me almost at the same time. They said they felt guilty for not noticing my ordeal. However, I assured them that it wasn’t their fault since I took up Chemistry independently. At the same time, I insisted that quitting school was the best decision for me then.

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My parents gave me their blessing in a heartbeat. On that same day, I moved out of the dorms and went back to their house. I took a leave of absence from school and decided to try my hand at creative writing. It turned out to be the wisest decision I had ever made, considering writing felt more like a hobby than a chore for me.

Because of that, I could confirm that quitting could mean winning sometimes.

An Overview Of Family Life Coaching

 

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A life coach comprehends the fact that a family is not spared from problems, including small ones like having trouble dealing with the new teenager, or as tough as coping with the infidelity of a partner. Realistically, it’s not easy to live with other people, even if these people are your family members, those that love and care for you the most. Developing a stable and efficient family dynamics needs time, effort, and patience. You need to keep the whole family happy and mentally healthy.

Family coaching sessions are beneficial to families who need tools and strategies that will help them resolve misunderstandings, come up with agreements, and optimistically change a troubled living situation into a convenient and happy one.

Definition

Family coaching has a similar primary goal as all other kinds of coaching – to provide guidance and direction to someone to get them from where they currently are to where they wish to be. Like the business mentor who is tasked to reorganize a business team or teach the leader better communication strategies, a family coach goes into the home to work ready to collaborate with the members of the family. His goal is to look for ways to identify the family’s issues and problems and then find ways to resolve these problems.

How Family Coaching Can Help

Disagreements and conflicts in the home can be more devastating and stressful than conflicts in the workplace. When we decide to have a family, we typically do so because of love. But despite those feelings of love and passion, these can be broken and damaged through time due to various misfortunes and challenges in life. And sadly, most of them cause permanent scars. Family coaching provides realistic solutions to these personal, financial, and other types of family problems.

 

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People can reach out to family coaches when they want help with resolving their marriage problems, raising and disciplining children, managing work-life balance, dealing with difficult teenagers, and getting over a separation or divorce.

Primarily, one might not feel comfortable with the concept of consulting a stranger to help them resolve their family issues and welcome him into their home to observe the family dynamics. It’s not an ordinary circumstance, and it could feel rather demoralizing to think that your lives are being meddled and judged, or perhaps you or another family member will be blamed for something went wrong. However, a family coach is not there to condemn or point fingers. He is there to help the family come up with a perspective so that everyone will be able to get the bigger picture and learn to embrace the roles that each member plays. Once everyone understands and accepts that there are things that need transformation, the entire family can now find ways to move forward with positivity and hope.

Common Family Issues

Teenagers. This stage of life is one of the most difficult for parents and even the whole family to manage. Peer problems, stress from school, erratic hormones, and the teenager’s nature to fight for his freedom can swiftly transform the home into a battlefield. Parents who respond to these behaviors in anger and resentment will only cause their teens to talk back and isolate themselves even more. The teen might misunderstand her parents’ anger as hate rather than just a form of worry for them. A family coach works with the parents and the teen to build mutual respect, establish more concrete boundaries, and cultivate more understanding with one another. He helps both parties to be able to see from each other’s perspective.

Separation

There are a lot of causes why couples decide to separate, although separation or divorce is the final stage wherein parties come to accept that the marriage doesn’t work anymore. Most couples say that separation is one of the most difficult experiences that they’ve ever had to deal with. Moving forward can be especially devastating if you need to be in contact with your ex-spouse, such as if you have kids together. A family coach can provide guidance for families to be able to efficiently go through the experience with as little pain and trauma as possible for everyone.

Work/Life Balance

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Getting hooked or having kids doesn’t really mean you need to set aside your career. It only means that you will have to contemplate your work/life balance. Family coaching is a beneficial tool for families to be able to work together on attaining a functional work/life balance because it provides everyone the opportunity to gather together in one room and talk about each other’s feelings and opinions. Coaching sessions are developed to get everyone to open up so that an agreement can be reached without conflict or misunderstanding.

If you feel that your family life needs a little help, you could reach out to a family coach just so someone from outside kick-starts some positive vibes into the everyday routine. Ironically, family coaching is particularly powerful when the opinions of the members are divided. The coach will help everyone understand where each member is coming from so that stability is achieved between tackling realities and enjoying life.