Letting go of something you put time and effort into is one of the hardest things a human can do.
That’s because our expectations of how it should have been aren’t met. You want to keep trying to make the dream happen, but doing so won’t allow you to thrive.
Balking on the chance to let go will keep you chained down until you the idea becomes flat or just stops existing all together.
Lots of self-help books give you a chapter on “learning to let go” and how to cultivate that decision as a skill.
And it is an important skill a person can have because it allows you to navigate your professional life better, by becoming well versed in good ideas and bad. But the skill is only helpful if you attempt to try every possible solution that’s feasible before letting go.
If you have given your idea everything you can, letting go will be an easy decision, because it will be the only decision you can make.
Even if hard decisions factor in such as unemployment for your employees, knowing that you’ve done everything you can, will benefit everyone in the long run, because you know there’s no other way to try.
And getting to this point will make letting go be more of a realization than a artform. And that’s where most self-help books got it wrong. Treating the skill of letting go as a skill to be cultivated on its own merit is incorrect. But treating the skill of letting go, as something that comes only with experience is correct.
Because letting go isn’t a skill, it’s a last resort you must be forced to take. It’s like encountering the white light before you die; you’ll know it when you see it but you can’t recreate it. It must occur naturally.
Sure, one could come up with exit strategies, but if your business had time to compile a exit plan, it wasn’t operating at maximum efficiency. It was attempting to soften the blow instead of trying to fix the problem.
Failure should be painfully tragic, because if it’s treated as just another decision, it means you haven’t tried everything possible to succeed. Making failure a pleasant event means you’re ok with letting go and shows you didn’t get bitter against the idea’s signs of becoming a failure.
Because if you give everything you have to an idea, it will become successful no matter what. But if you plan for failure, you’re not lighting the metaphorical fire under yourself to succeed.
The practice of “letting go” should be treated as a total failure in your own capabilities to make something succeed, and not as a skill for you to cultivate. And the older you get, the less time you have to try everything possible. So throwing 100% of your weight behind an idea quickly and assertively, will quickly make your realize something is worth continuing, or letting go of.