Someone said “Giving up doesn’t always mean you are weak it also means you are strong enough to let go. Letting go isn’t the same as giving up but rather accepting things that cannot be”.
I got tagged in a Facebook status asking the difference between GIVING UP AND LETTING GO…and I thought to do this piece as I was scouting for a theme to work-on anyways.
Words especially idioms aren’t usually a straight shot…’giving up’ or ‘letting go’ have some semantic relationship…now how about ‘giving in’? Check this meanings below and see if you can derive any contrast…and we’ll go from there.
GIVE UP: a. To surrender (someone or something) b. To stop or quit (an activity, etc).
c. To relinquish (something) e. To lose hope concerning (someone or something) d. To abandon e. To admit defeat, to capitulate.
LET GO: To release from one’s grasp; to go from a state of holding on to a state of no longer holding on. To emotionally disengage or to distract oneself from a situation. To fail to maintain a standard of appearance, behavior, or performance.
You’ll discover there is a very fine (i mean a very tiny line of difference) between ‘giving up’ and ‘letting go’ and it the INDIVIDUAL’S ATTITUDE… In essence the difference may not come from the pages a dictionary from from practical psychology.
Let me illustrate my points by my favorite quote from Steve Jobs’ speech at Stanford University:
“Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Almost everything–all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure–these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important.
Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.”
Job was diagnosed with prostrate cancer, yet didn’t give up on life, on faith (as a Buddist), on the things he loved to do…in fact he was said to fight Prostate cancer for about 6 years…want will normally kill in less than two…that an attitude. Infact he made more impact in the last 5 years of his life than before
Micheal Jackson is another man that comes to mind…in some quota’s it is believed he killed himself by overdose…giving up on life and all the people that love him.
So in the finally analysis…what you do (your attitude) when you are faced with the biggest issues of life is what defines these terms. It not just the face-meaning both of them can assume positive and negative status in usage. E.g.
Paul gave up smoking +
Sean gave up on life –
Teddy let go his grievance +
Sarah let go of her 10 years marriage –
I’ll leave you with this; there is no easy way out of our circumstances…Sometimes you stick it out even when it seem honorable to give up, because you know that on the other side is either a better situation or a better you. It’s probably my job to tell you life isn’t fair, but I figure you already know that. So instead, I’ll tell you that hope is precious, and you’re right not to let go!
Don’t let go too soon, don’t hold on too long! See you at the TOP!
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