Let Go When You’re at the End of the Rope

Grit says, “When you’re at the end of the rope, tie a knot and hang on.”

What if it’s time to let go? It’s dangerous to be tenacious and lack wisdom.

You need grit to hang on. You need wisdom to let go.

Sometimes you should let go when you're at the end of the rope. Image of a knot at the end of a rope.

Image attribution: Auckland Museum, CC BY 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

When you’re at the end of your rope…

#1. Let go of foolish hope.

Nietzsche said, “Hope in reality is the worst of all evils because it prolongs the torments of man.”

Hope makes you hang on too long.

I know a woman who was passed over twice for the COO position. She stopped hoping for the position and resolved to do a great job where she was. She earned the COO spot after she let go of hope. Eventually she earned the CEO position.

Hope deferred produces despair.

Skillful quitting: “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.  Then quit.  There’s no point in being a fool about it."   Image of W.C. Fields

#2. Let go of corrosive bitterness.

You might feel bitter because you received less of a good thing than you deserved. You didn’t receive proper recognition, for example.

You might feel bitter because you received more of a bad thing than you deserved. You received blame for something you didn’t do, for example.

You might feel bitter when someone else receives good that should have come to you. The boss takes credit for your work, for example.

People don’t always get what they deserve.

Bitterness corrodes life. It…

  1. Drains resolve.
  2. Impedes growth.
  3. Weakens relationships.
  4. Poisons environments.
  5. Sustains learned helplessness.
  6. Breeds victims.
  7. Disrupts contentment.

#3. Let go of destructive hostility.

Lashing out is living in the past. The past controls the present until you stop trying to change what can’t be changed.


When your mind’s set on one thing it can’t consider another. Things to consider…

  1. Commitment to thrive regardless of what happens to you.
  2. Forgiveness that releases offenses.
  3. Generosity to do good in an imperfect world.
  4. Resolve to stop living in the past.

When is tenacity a bad thing?

Three Things You Must Let Go

4 Powers of Surrender for Leaders

Private fireside chat with John David Mann and Dan Rockwell.

When: OCT 19 at 7 PM Eastern

Where: Zoom

Why: Discuss humility, leadership, The Vagrant, and whatever topics you bring up.

Email: TheVagrantBook@gmail.com for the LINK.