How to Walk Away from Something That Isn’t Working for You

failure life's challenges

From a young age we are taught to, “Finish what you start.” “Keep your eye on the prize.” And, “clean your plate.” What happens when your desires change mid-creation, mid-race or, horror of horrors – mid-meal? Do you stay because, “Well, I’ve put this much time into it, might as well finish it,” or some version of this? Do you keep going because to not finish is accepting failure?

What if failure wasn’t the worst choice? What if staying with something that no longer works for you is a fate worse than failure? And, if you’d really like to be on the fringe, what if failure is the trick that has trapped us, the lie that keeps us from creating the life, the business, the relationship we know is truly possible?

What if failure ACTUALLY looks like staying with the things that no longer serve us? What if what we call failure is just changing tracks?


When I was 20, I dropped out of college. I hated going to class, was super depressed and just couldn’t find my rhythm. My grades suffered and I was at risk of being kicked out, so I left. FAILED.

I went home and got a job. That job led me to a move two states away to the company headquarters. The company did well enough, but it had a major downsizing, which led to a layoff (another FAILURE), which led to a career change. Fast forward 10 years, and I now own a successful business in Los Angeles, travel the world teaching social media workshops and business classes, and I genuinely love my life!

All of that sprung up out of a supposed failure.

Failure Isn’t The End

If what keeps us from walking away from something that isn’t working for us is a fear of failure, and we can acknowledge that failure isn’t the end – why stay with something that isn’t working?

How do you know if something isn’t working for you?

If the target is joy and that’s your natural state (yes, even in business), every choice can contribute. Close your eyes and think about everything in your life contributing to your joy — your business, your body, your relationships, EVERYTHING. What does that life feel like? Warm? Happy? Does it make you smile? That’s the benchmark.

And now, as you start to look at all the things in your life, ask: If I choose this, will it create or decay the future I desire to create? If I choose this, what will my life be like in 5 years? If I don’t choose this, what will my life feel like in 5 years? It’s not always cognitive. Sometimes it’s just a feeling; a business instinct, if you will. But you KNOW.

Ask that for everything. Every opportunity, every partnership, everything.

Free Yourself From The Fear of Failure

Without a fear of failure weighing you down, you can get to what’s actually true for you and look at the things that YOU know will actually contribute to the future you desire to create.

Everything else? Walk away, my friend. It’s not for you.

This guest post was authored by Paula Peralta

Paula Peralta is an empowerment coach, a social media authority, and a certified facilitator for Joy of Business, a specialty program of Access Consciousness.  She moonlights as a Salon Owner and Hair Stylist in Los Angeles. Paula also believes you really can have it all – and that anyone can make a living doing what they love. Combining her passion for facilitation with her salon business has allowed her to create a space where a client can get a new hairstyle, as well as coaching and facilitation on the roadblocks that often cross their paths. Paula believes in generating money from doing what you love and from just being yourself. She travels the world teaching social media workshops and facilitating Access Consciousness classes. Her greatest joy in life is helping people find their true, unique path to happiness, no matter how different it may be to that of others. Follow Paula.

Ms. Career Girl

Ms. Career Girl was started in 2008 to help ambitious young professional women figure out who they are, what they want and how to get it.