Stuck in a rut: How to know when to give up or keep on going?

by Marteka Swaby July 28, 2016


 Stuck in a rut: How to know when to give up or keep on going?


Vital changes


It always interests me what creatures of comfort human beings are and I have always been fascinated about how instinctively we like to sit in the same place, eat in the restaurants and keep the same daily rituals.


It is in the routine of doing ordinary things that we form a sense of belonging that perhaps makes us feel safe and any change can often be awkward, even at the best of times when we are happy and content.


This can feel worse when you are going from one disaster to the next. Everything seems to be going well and then suddenly the unexpected happens. Yet change can be good for us, even though it can also leave us filled with dread.


Having a routine can be great, especially for those who have experienced a life of chaos, living for many years without a routine. Routine is king if you are leading a very busy lifestyle with a hectic job and young children. But sometimes routine gets in the way, holds us hostage and stops us making vital changes that we need to move on!



Is routine holding you hostage?


I have worked with some very intelligent, capable individuals, experts in their field. Strong people who have overcome all kinds of hardships from surviving wars to overcoming addictions.


They all share experiences of intimidation by such negative experiences that have griped them. Yet it is remarkable that when you are faced with major changes, the overwhelming sense of fear, doubt and discouragement take over.


Holding onto any behaviour or relationship that is toxic is often never the right thing. The temptation to hold onto routines increase in times of difficulties, even if it is causing us harm, but the alternative appears to be a bigger struggle.


I spoke afew weeks ago about being in a season of acceleration and not intimidation. When we are about to make changes, start something new or transition from an old behaviour we start to question if we are capable or even if we are doing the right thing?


3 things to help you know when to give up or keep on going?


I almost always steer towards the optimistic side, a positive way of thinking and my cup is mostly half full. I think it is very normal or human to question things, not excluding doubt.


Allowing yourself to experience feelings of doubt can help you to become clear, if you don’t allow it to overwhelm you but help you to understand when to give up or keep going;


  1. Understand your motives. Comparing yourself to someone else can be a positive motivator. “If he can do it then so can I”. Understand you are unique. There is nobody on the planet exactly the same as you. You have your own unique strengths and weaknesses. So maybe it is true, if he can do it so can you, but why make a change to your life that may not be right one! Always be clear of your motives before making any major changes, if you are clear about the why then you are more likely to keep going when you start to experience difficulties.


  1. Know your limits. It is important to have boundaries or limits in any healthy relationship, including the relationship with yourself. If you have the desire to change something it is probably an indication you have reached your limits. With no limits you will constantly be exhausted and feel drained which is not helpful for making good decisions about whether to give up or keep going. However, if you are a person that jumps from one change to the next, with little time for processing or thinking. Slow down and get to know your limits!


  1. Trust the stretch. To be stretched outside your comfort zone or routine is sometimes a good thing. If you are so stretched you are on the verge of a nervous breakdown, then you have probably reached your limits a long time ago and ignored the warning signs. However, if you are at the point of feeling like giving up, then holding on just a while longer could lead to a huge reward. It is often when we are at the point of giving up you will eventually see the things you have been working so hard for, a sudden breakthrough!



There are no guarantees in this life and sometimes the load is already too heavy. Hence, it may not be the time to make changes. However, if you are feeling stuck in a rut and know it’s time to change. Don’t give up, keep going!


Download my FREE e-book today and take your first 3 steps towards positive thinking. You deserve to know your limits and make those changes.




Marteka Swaby
Marteka Swaby