Breaking News
Investing Pro 0
Free Webinar - Crude Oil Trading 2023 | Thursday, February 9, 2023 | 01:00PM PST Enroll Now

Poker legend Annie Duke on why quitting can be a good thing

Economy Oct 28, 2022 12:05AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This article has already been saved in your Saved Items
 
© Reuters. Annie Duke poses in an undated photo obtained by Reuters on October 27, 2022. Courtesy Annie Duke/Handout via REUTERS

By Chris Taylor

NEW YORK - At this point, it seems like everyone is talking about the trend of “quiet quitting," where employees slowly start disengaging from their work.

Well, Annie Duke has a suggestion for you: Quit at full volume.

The legendary poker player has a new book out on the subject titled “Quit: The Power of Knowing When To Walk Away."

“Quitting shouldn’t be a dirty word or insult,” Duke says. “In fact, quitting a critical skill to develop.”

To be clear, Duke is not suggesting we quit things recklessly. But quitting is a life choice we can get better at – by thinking intelligently about when, why and how to do it, says Duke, who left the world of competitive poker and is the author of several books on the art of decision-making.

Of course, this flies in the face of dominant cultural norms – that you can never give up and must stick it out at all costs.

That is the typical “hustle culture” narrative, and it is just wrong, Duke says. If we are being honest, we are quitting stuff all the time in life – whether leaving a toxic relationship for a healthier one or moving on from a dead-end job in search of one that is more fulfilling. Sometimes, giving up on one path can be the absolute right thing to do.

Indeed, quitting seems to be very much at the top of American minds in the pandemic era. The so-called “Great Resignation” led more than 47 million people to leave jobs in 2021, according to the Labor Department. They were spurred on by a powerful job market, the mass loss that led to a reshuffling of priorities and a realization that life is very short indeed.

So instead of blindly following the ethos of “never quit,” perhaps we should be learning how to quit more often, and better. A few thoughts from Duke:

DO NOT LEAVE IT TOO LATE

If you find yourself frequently thinking about quitting, then odds are you should have probably done it earlier, Duke says. By that point, the decision has become pretty clear.

Of course, you can never be 100% sure about any life decision. But typically, most people who quit end up believing they made the right choice, she says – and are happier for it.

After all, if you are miserable in a job and decide to stick it out a few more years, think of the significant “opportunity costs” involved – you could have spent that time pursuing a new and better path.

KNOW WHEN TO FOLD

If you have spent years at a job, carving out a role and building connections, it can feel like quitting is a big waste of all that time and effort. Those are called “sunk costs,” and they are warping your decision-making.

What you should really be focusing on is the best path from this point on, says Duke. Just like a poker player with terrible cards, often the best decision is not to keep playing it out and putting more money into a bad situation, but to fold and try again with a different hand.

SET ‘KILL CRITERIA’

When we’re right in the middle of a situation, we often make bad decisions, because our emotions have overwhelmed us. That is why those climbing Mount Everest set “turnaround times” in advance – hard time limits that prompt them to turn around before they reach the summit, lest they find themselves in grave danger.

When embarking on a new job, set some advance markers about where you want to be in your career or what you want to have achieved. If those markers are not being met and it feels like you are treading water, remember those "kill criteria" to make better decisions in the heat of the moment.

HAVE A ‘QUITTING COACH’

The hardest thing of all is to quit when your job is tied up with your identity, Duke says. If a company or role has become a part of you, then if you quit, what exactly are you now?

That is why people can be so reluctant to quit, and why you might need outside help to see a situation clearly. “Find someone you trust, who has your best interests at heart, and sit down with them,” she says. “A friend can help us through those hard decisions, because to others, it can often be pretty obvious that we need to quit.”

Poker legend Annie Duke on why quitting can be a good thing
 

Related Articles

Add a Comment

Comment Guidelines

We encourage you to use comments to engage with other users, share your perspective and ask questions of authors and each other. However, in order to maintain the high level of discourse we’ve all come to value and expect, please keep the following criteria in mind:  

  •            Enrich the conversation, don’t trash it.

  •           Stay focused and on track. Only post material that’s relevant to the topic being discussed. 

  •           Be respectful. Even negative opinions can be framed positively and diplomatically. Avoid profanity, slander or personal attacks directed at an author or another user. Racism, sexism and other forms of discrimination will not be tolerated.

  • Use standard writing style. Include punctuation and upper and lower cases. Comments that are written in all caps and contain excessive use of symbols will be removed.
  • NOTE: Spam and/or promotional messages and comments containing links will be removed. Phone numbers, email addresses, links to personal or business websites, Skype/Telegram/WhatsApp etc. addresses (including links to groups) will also be removed; self-promotional material or business-related solicitations or PR (ie, contact me for signals/advice etc.), and/or any other comment that contains personal contact specifcs or advertising will be removed as well. In addition, any of the above-mentioned violations may result in suspension of your account.
  • Doxxing. We do not allow any sharing of private or personal contact or other information about any individual or organization. This will result in immediate suspension of the commentor and his or her account.
  • Don’t monopolize the conversation. We appreciate passion and conviction, but we also strongly believe in giving everyone a chance to air their point of view. Therefore, in addition to civil interaction, we expect commenters to offer their opinions succinctly and thoughtfully, but not so repeatedly that others are annoyed or offended. If we receive complaints about individuals who take over a thread or forum, we reserve the right to ban them from the site, without recourse.
  • Only English comments will be allowed.
  • Any comment you publish, together with your investing.com profile, will be public on investing.com and may be indexed and available through third party search engines, such as Google.

Perpetrators of spam or abuse will be deleted from the site and prohibited from future registration at Investing.com’s discretion.

Write your thoughts here
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
Post also to:
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Thanks for your comment. Please note that all comments are pending until approved by our moderators. It may therefore take some time before it appears on our website.
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Add Chart to Comment
Confirm Block

Are you sure you want to block %USER_NAME%?

By doing so, you and %USER_NAME% will not be able to see any of each other's Investing.com's posts.

%USER_NAME% was successfully added to your Block List

Since you’ve just unblocked this person, you must wait 48 hours before renewing the block.

Report this comment

I feel that this comment is:

Comment flagged

Thank You!

Your report has been sent to our moderators for review
Continue with Google
or
Sign up with Email