N = Never

Recently I’ve been seeing a lot of motivational material advising us to NEVER, EVER GIVE UP and I’ve reached the point where I have to finally say – I really don’t like that expression.  It’s a one dimensional platitude that just doesn’t work for me.

never - metallica


I understand that it’s intention is to encourage people to be resilient and persistant.  It’s too easy to get discouraged and give up when the going gets hard.   The issue is that sometimes it is equally important to know when to cut your losses and abandon a course of action that isn’t working.

Hard work and genuine effort are encouraged – and necessary – to achieve virtually anything – a good education, athletic prowess, career ambitions – but I’ve also seen people continue to throw money at losing propositions and chase a dream for which they are clearly unsuited.

Sometimes I think obstacles are there to send us a message that our current course of action is unsustainable and needs to be reconsidered.   The real talent is being able to make the GO / NO GO decisions at the right time for the right reasons.

Personally, I think it’s more appropriate to have the attitude of NEVER SAY NEVER.


Image from Despair.com



About Joanne Sisco

Retired but not idle. Life is an adventure - I plan to continue to embrace it.
This entry was posted in A-Z Challenge - 2014, Attitude and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

30 Responses to N = Never

  1. Kathe W. says:

    good post! Thoughtful!


  2. Great observation, Joanne, and by the way, I have nominated you for a Sisterhood Award. I always enjoy, relate to and/or commiserate with your posts and appreciate all your likes and comments on my posts. Sista! http://whichwaynow101.wordpress.com/2014/04/17/sisterhood-of-the-world-bloggers-award/
    Kind regards,


  3. Great post! Stopping by from A to Z.


  4. Lisa Moles says:

    I try (and fail) to not use “always” and “never” … It’s so rarely the case.


  5. I always thought that ‘never give up’ was best shown in Monty Python’s Black Night skit… Taken to its extreme in typical Python fashion!


  6. M-R says:

    I like it for its own message, and I also like it for its debunking aspect ! 🙂


  7. I totally agree. Great post!


  8. ponymartini says:

    Never is a word that has always bothered me. It can be so hard to admit defeat, but sometimes for your sanity, and everyone one around you, you just need to let it go. (No reference to Frozen intended)


  9. Very true, Jo. The saying “There’s no point flogging a dead horse” springs to mind xx


    • joannesisco says:

      That expression has always puzzled me as kid. Now that I’m a ‘bit’ older, I recognize that sometimes it’s not obvious the horse is dead when you’re too wrapped up in your own head space.


  10. sueslaght says:

    Very good point Joanne. I think of people who try to run through injuries with this attitude. I am all about determination and one must balance that with well being.


  11. Wholeheartedly agree. Mad me think of a friend of mine who’s been trying, for most of her life, to set up and make a living as a Complementary Therapist. She’s got a whole wall plastered full of all manner of certificates. We met on a nutrition course, and graduated together ten years ago. Every time I speak to her, her business is “picking up”. I talked to her a week ago, she’s racked up a stack of credit card debt, and she’s having to sell her house. But business is still “picking up”. Nothing is more demoralising than letting go of a dream, I do get that, but if you’ve been trying HARD for the best part of two decades and it’s clearly driving you into ruin… my heart goes out to her 😦


  12. nancytex2013 says:

    That meme is hilarious and true!

    Attitude and will
    Aren’t always sufficient
    Cut your losses now



  13. It is true that we need to let go of things that aren’t helping us! Separating yourself from what isn’t good in your life will allow you to move forward. However I think most of these posts where they encourage you to never give up are geared towards entrepreneurs who are pushing to manifest their dreams. What do you think?

    ❤ / Stephanie

    Don’t Hesitate To Add me on Facebook – I love to connect with inspiring people!



    • joannesisco says:

      I agree. I hear it most often targetted to aspiring entrepreneurs and athletes. As a motivational expression, I think it’s too myopic and cause people to hang in longer than they probably should – feeling a lot of failure along the way. Sometimes it takes a lot of bravery & wisdom to know when to cash in the chips.
      Thanks for visiting! I appreciate the comment!


  14. Diana says:

    This attitude bothers me sometimes, too. It’s important to know when to cut your losses, knowing that we only have one lifetime and that some things are not as important as others, that sometimes we are better off saying “I’m done” so that we have room for something that makes us happy.


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