If not giving up was always the right answer life would be so easy. History shows us that sometimes quitters prosper and sometimes they miss out. Knowing when to quit and when to keep going is one of the most difficult questions and so we asked folks we admire to tell us how they think through this question.

Chantrice Rachelle | Visual Artist

I feel like the cliche answer is “never give up,” but what I have learned in just the last year is that sometimes there are things that you have to give up in order to keep going with bigger and better things. I personally think that you have to rely on your intuition- that true gut feeling- as well as whomever or whatever your spiritual beliefs are as far as a higher being (for me that’s God). For me, being a multi-faceted individual, I tend to have so many endeavors that I attempt to take on simultaneously. Being a one-woman team, taking on so much is a recipe for high levels of stress and burnout. Experiencing burnout is when I knew I had to give up some things that I didn’t want to give up on, but it came down to re-evaluating where I was and where I wanted to be, then looking at which of my ventures were essentially holding me back. Going back to intuition and spiritual beliefs- I talk to God frequently about every goal and vision that I have and I pray for guidance. Read more>>

Jose Peña | Film Director & Film Editor

Answering this question is about as easy as trying to simplify time travel, but i’m going to try. I believe you know when it’s time to give up based on the feeling you get from the thought of parting ways with a dream. If you’re passionate about something no matter what, no matter how long it takes, you’ll make it happen the same way you make date night, or happy hour happen. But on the flip-side, after the effort, if you don’t start to see success, it might be safe to say it’s time to call it quits, not always the goal but often the approach.I think the trick is to know the difference between being delusional and being a dreamer, because while dreams can come true, they don’t always make sense. Read more>>

Cher Lytle | Pastry Chef & Culinary Producer

For me, it’s less a matter of “give up/keep going.” It’s a matter of seeing the forks in the road. I’ve changed my trajectory, but to say ‘I gave up’ sounds too defeatist. If something isn’t working, take the next fork in the road and change it! I have a good friend who made great money in the entertainment industry, but it was making her miserable. After asking herself if this was what she wanted to keep doing for another year, she quit. She now owns a gym and is super broke but all kinds of happy. I don’t see her as giving up, I see her as changing her trajectory. Each individual needs to decide what their situation is and what they can endure. Can you handle the ‘salad years’? Would you be happier working corporate and doing your art on the side? If you aren’t hurting yourself and/or others and doing what makes you happy… buckle down and keep going. Read more>>

Mike E. Lesovsky | Storyteller/Editor/Artist

It’s simple. There is no giving up. I’ve never had a plan B. I’m working in the field that I’ve always wanted to be in since I was a kid. From working in the little video store in high school, to film school, then touring with professional skateboarders and punk bands shooting and editing content, then up here in LA working for some of the biggest ad agencies, post houses and film studios in the world. I don’t have a back up. Im riding this career till the wheels fall off. I’m just as passionate now about creating as I ever was. I love it. I don’t ever want to retire. Read more>>

Dorothy Milone | Girl Group

Always remember why you started in the first place. Read more>>

Katina Fields | Celebrity Publicist

How to know whether to keep going or to give up…Hmm…That’s a great question!! I determine my will/drive to give up if I no longer love what I am doing. It’s hard to motivate yourself you you absolutely hate what you are doing in life. I’m happy, persistent and more determined if I love what I am doing. That’s why I’m successful at being a Celebrity Publicist, because I absolutely love what I do and I love my career. Read more>>

Maja Keres | Dancer, Dance Teacher, With Many Extra Talents

My position on this question is that the answer is always present inside of us. The only thing we need to do, and practice, is connecting with ourselves so we can recognize the answer. In my experience, the best decision is the one that feels good, or better in regards to the ultimate desire or goal. Sometimes giving up only means stopping the effort and releasing the struggle to get to our goal specifically and only in the way that we imagined is taking us there and thus allowing other ways to open and present to us. If it feels right to keep going even though it’s hard, then keep going. The point here is to be in tune with yourself so much that you can recognize when something is good for you and when it’s not, which is really individual, but in the end, if we know that we gave our ultimate best in the process, then giving up doesn’t feel so wrong, it just means – I gave my all, and I’m proud of it, so now I let it go. Read more>>

Kira Price | Entrepreneur & Content Creator

I allow myself to go through the thought process of giving up so that when I come back to my senses and start again, I’ll have a clearer head on what I want out of my life/career. There is nothing wrong with having doubts and fears about the unknown of starting a business and building a brand. I personally use that same momentum for a better come back strategy. Refocus, Reframe, and Redefine as many times as you need to. Success is subjective so I always only strive to keep bettering myself and that gives me the strength to keep going at my own pace. Read more>>

Dezert Skorpion | Rap Artist/Music Producer

When you find yourself questioning yourself, feeling fear, and outright emotional when the ebb comes in running your business or perusing your artistry, then you know to keep going. You have to adjust the equalizer of your career to balance everything out. If you’ve given up, then none of the above would have happened in the first place. Everything would just be cut right then and there. Read more>>

JESSICA MARCELA TORRES | ASSISTANT EDITOR & ASSISTANT DIRECTOR

If you’re really wondering whether you should give up or not, my advice is; don’t. I’m sorry to disappoint if you were actually reading this to fish for something to validate your reason for giving up on whatever it may be. What I can tell you is, there are scenarios where you may think you’re giving up, but in reality, you’re just moving on to something better for yourself. I’ve had a couple of those moments that I’ll share with you. There’s also the case that you may be running into dead ends where you feel like it’s a sign for you to give up, but no! In my opinion, it’s a sign that you need to change your methods because your current ones aren’t working. Everyone has their downs and slow periods, but sometimes you just need to wait for it to go in your favor. Read more>>

Margeaux Sippell | Singer-Songwriter & Journalist

I know to keep going because I still have something to say through my art. I love that hopeful feeling when I write a song and it has so much potential. I also love working and collaborating with other musicians and seeing what they bring to a song that I never would have thought of. The journey from song idea to realized recording is such an amazing process that never gets old. And I know not to give up because it doesn’t matter so much to me what the outcome is after releasing the song — it’s more about the journey of creating it. Read more>>

Steven Joseph | Music Artist

I have battled with this a lot during my music journey. As an artist, I feel that every time I am just about to hang it all up and quit, another opportunity arrives, people send me pictures of them wearing the merchandise or someone reaches out to me and tells me how much they love the music. This reminds me that you never know is watching and that there are people counting on you to keep going. Whatever it is you are passionate about don’t give up because you never what opportunities are on the other side. Read more>>

Omari Williams | Actor & Voice Actor

I think this is a tough question that a lot of people wrestle with in the arts. And sometimes, there is no hard answer. Especially since over time, things change; availability, passions, goals, finances. This pandemic has really forced us to look inwards at what we were doing before and how we want things to change afterwards. For me personally, something that has kept me going is that my goals were never in the realm of unattainability, sure they might be hard to get to, but not in a nearly impossible way. I got into this career, because I love telling stories and making people feel things within those stories. Just because I’m not in the biggest Marvel production doesn’t mean I don’t get to still reach that goal. The goal is always to reach more and more people, and I will strive towards that, but I can’t count out those smaller groups of people, because they matter too. In some ways, I need a combination of both, because impacting those in your immediate circle/community can be just as fulfilling. Read more>>

Corey Clifford Ryan Lagod | Creative Duo

The most common question we and we think actors get when they make the leap is “how long are you going to give this whole acting thing?” Obviously both our answers were, “well it shouldn’t take that long to get recognized for our talent, win all awards, own a yacht and not have to think about ever giving up…so 5 years?” For us that was 10ish years ago and we’re still pursuing our creative endeavors. We’ve worked with a lot of really cool people, created new shows for small streaming services and had some acting gigs along the way, but…still NO YACHT. We think the idea of giving up relates to your definition of success. If success to you is only monetary or global recognition then we’d have given up a while ago. Luckily for both of us, we define success by how fulfilled our lives are. As a creative duo we still love working together and our friendship brings us a lot of joy both working and outside work, so for us quitting isn’t on our horizon. Read more>>

Corey Wallace | Film and Television Composer

As a film and television composer, knowing whether to keep going or give up comes down to 3 things for me: Love, Hope, and Belief. I keep going because I still love my work, and I still have passion for creating music and telling stories. I keep going because I still hope that the next project will be my break. I keep going because I still believe that the music I’m creating now is the best I’ve ever done, and I still believe that my best work is still in front of me. Read more>>

Marty Schnapf | Artist

I think it’s more important to think about whether to keep going or change course. For me, when the read of an artwork becomes too obvious or one-dimensional, it’s time to make a mark that will irretrievably deny that interpretation. Art should be as initially confounding as it is alluring. In this way, it shows respect for the viewer. Imagine going to a party and the host tells you, “Welcome to the party. You can stand here and eat this and converse with person X about the following list of topics. Your position on those topics will be…” You probably won’t stay long. To make an artwork that people will spend time with, you have to make room for their decisions (even bad ones) while offering all the elements of comfort and surprise that go along with a great night. Read more>>

Brittany Rizzo | Actress & Singer

I think about giving up all the time. What makes me keep going, is do I see myself living my most authentic life if I did? Sure, I could live comfortable in my hometown and have a 9-5 job, but would I be fulfilled? The highs you get when you see your dream come to reality is enough to keep you going. & it always seems right when you’re about to throw in the towel, the universe has your back. Its a gut feeling, when you know what lights your soul on fire you spend forever chasing it. Read more>>

Shian Long | Fashion Model

To me an important indicator of the answer to that is how does doing what you’re doing make you feel? If you feel empowered and truly love what you are doing but you are having doubts whether it be from not having enough financial gain, not enough bookings, or not having a large following. Those things are apart of the process of really going after what you want in life. It’s in all of our best interest to go after that lingering thought that has been in your head and that feeling that has been in your heart. If it sparks true joy that’s how you know to keep going. Giving up should only be an option when you’ve been working at whatever it is for so long and you’ve exhausted all of your options that you no longer find joy in doing whatever it is. Only give up on something if you are sure that it isn’t contributing to the growth of you. Read more>>

Asha Griffith | Hip Hop Artist & Tap Dancer/Choreographer

First, I have to preface that I don’t think “giving up” or shifting focus is a bad decision to make in certain circumstances. When you no longer have thoughts or the desire to continue to TRY I think it’s time to have a longer chat with yourself about WHY you feel a shift. Is it because you’re not making enough money? Are you lazy (be honest)? Is it because you want results in a time frame that may be unrealistic? Do you have other priorities that came into the picture? Depressed and buried in self doubt? These are all examples of things that can lead us to feeling like we should or need to give up. I think once you analyze those thoughts and feelings and get to the root you can make a sound decision on how to move forward. I’ve definitely had thoughts about shifting my focus away from rapping and dance many times. Read more>>

Erika Monroe | Founder & CEO of Alke-Bulan Naturals

I see the vision and have faith in my brand and products. Even on the days where I feel like I want to give up, I make a conscious effort to push forward with my goals and ambition. I am intentional with all of my actions which helps navigate me throughout the day. I remind myself that I came to far to give up now and that the people that are successful are the ones who keep going in the face of adversity. I pray and mediate daily, use universal laws such as the law of attraction to manifest, most importantly I listen to my body and take a break when I need to. Every day I plant a seed knowing that one day my harvest will be plentiful and I will see my vision through to fruition. Read more>>

Johnny Shankel | Drummer and Bassist

If what you’re doing no longer brings you any form of happiness, or worse, you are literally dreading every second, it might be time to move on. As a musician, if I am not honestly happy creating new songs and collaborating with others, how can I expect others to enjoy the finished product? The creative process, while sometimes arduous, should still at the end of the day bring you joy and satisfaction knowing you made something. I’ve asked myself if I should quit several times during the course of my music career, as I’m sure every artist has, but the one thing that’s kept me going is my real love and passion for music. As long as I still have that feeling inside me, I know it’s not time to throw in the towel. You have to find fun in just playing music, no matter what kind that may be. I myself have a particular sweet spot for playing rock and metal music, however if I were ever asked to play a jazz or reggae gig, I’d accept in a heartbeat. Read more>>

Garrison Oliver Gross | Actor

I know what it feels like to be rock bottom riding through an endless tunnel of broken dreams, wondering if there is any light at the end. If you keep on riding you will realize two thing. One – There is no end, it is always the beginning and Two – your light is within. We are all human and can understand what it’s like to question ourselves. Should I keep going or give up now? That is the question and we’re sticking with it. Don’t ever give up! When it comes down to your passions in life, keep going. You must give everything you got and then some. Your mind, body and spirit can work together manifesting your vision. Now is the best time!. Read more>>

Rebecca Saylor | Watercolorist, Textile Designer and Maker of Whimsical Things

Being an maker / entrepreneur / artist – it’s so easy to get distracted by the world, by things that inspire you, by work that you must do rather than work you want to do. Finishing things is always the best answer. Everyday my goal is to finish SOMETHING I’m working on and it’s a difficult task most days. Most art never goes as planned – there is a lot of rework and do over and it’s very easy to just give up and do something different. Success for me lies in the ability to complete my projects even if they aren’t initially as I imagined. To me, it’s always a good idea to just keep going and to trust in the creative process!. Read more>>

Maggie Gottlieb | Comedy/Dramedy Writer and Showrunner’s Assistant

This is a difficult question – particularly during an unprecedented time in entertainment. With movie theaters struggling to survive, extra constraints on production, and limited face time with decision-makers, our already extremely competitive industry has become even more competitive. Writers are encouraged to constantly hustle and network our way into our next gig, but right now, we don’t have access to anywhere near the usual number of opportunities. It’s a really challenging time to be an emerging writer. For those of us still self-isolating and working from home, it can feel nearly impossible to stay focused, inspired, and productive amid the constant churning of the 24-hour news cycle. We’ve also had far less access to many of our favorite healthy coping mechanisms, so the burnout is real. The world may be creeping back open, but due to the pandemic, many lower-level writers and industry assistants lost work, had their wages reduced, or were otherwise forced to relocate away from LA and/or make difficult decisions to keep themselves and their families afloat. Read more>>

North Morlan | Alt. Rock Band

As full time students with jobs, growing and maintaining a gigging band isn’t easy, especially after COVID-19 stopped all live shows. There have been plenty of obstacles, but we all believe as long as you are passionate and love what you do, you’ll find a way to succeed. The real key to persevering is being adaptable and knowing when and how to change your plans. Read more>>

Chloe Moser | Songwriter and Producer

I have been making music for as long as I can remember and it has always stemmed from wanting/needing to express myself. As I got older and started to share my music more, people really started to latch onto things that I never really considered. I will get messages from random people all over the world telling me how they loved a certain lyric I wrote, or they loved how I changed up a cover and made it my own. I will spend hours on a video for youtube that will only get 276 views and that definitely makes me feel like I shouldn’t be putting so much effort, or even doing anything at all. But, knowing that I can connect to someone that needs to feel less alone, or needs to feel something familiar, really resonates with me. Music has helped me feel so much less alone in my life and the fact that I can make someone feel thankful like that makes me never, ever want to give up. Making the music makes me feel less alone too! It can be very therapeutic. If I ever gave up, I think I would lose a very important part of my heart and brain. Read more>>

Tyrone Brown | Tyrone Duprie Brown Designer & Founder of Ty Duprie Handbags

Giving up on something I really want has never been an option for me. When there is something I really want, I find away to overcome the obstacle and I go after it with a vengeance. One of my favorite quotes is by Vince Lombardi. ” We would accomplish more things if we did not think of them as impossible”. Read more>>

Woody Mankowski | Musician

All my life, I’ve wanted to be a musician. I couldn’t be happy doing anything else for a living. There was never a time in my life when I didn’t passionately pursue my dream…until there was. I moved to Los Angeles in 2015 from Green Bay, Wisconsin. In 2018, I was going through a rough period in my life, and I needed to make some quick decisions. One of those decisions turned out to be that I would leave Los Angeles. I had only been living in L.A. for two years, previously residing in Green Bay, WI. I had few connections in L.A., however, the connections I did have were solid, and things were steadily starting to happen. I was working with some key players in the L.A. music industry, which is essentially based on “who you know”. It became obvious that new musicians need to wait their turn, and I knew it would be just a matter of time before I hooked up with the right people. Read more>>

Michael Seabolt | Director & Writer

I think it’s a matter of if you still love what you’re doing or not. Every time I book a Directing gig it’s like Christmas, first day of school, and my birthday all rolled into one. If you don’t find passion in what you’re doing then what’s the point in making yourself do it. Life’s to short not to chase your dreams and be happy!. Read more>>

Marcelo Rossil | Singer / Songwriter

I believe that being aware of yourself and the impact your words or actions have with those around you can balance itself. It’s important to never give up as you wouldn’t know just how vast your imagination or willpower can take you. Great things have been done by sheer belief and consistency. Knowing when enough is enough is also a valuable mindset to keep. Musically, sometimes you try your best for an idea to work and it just won’t fit! That’s ok. It’s to be taken as an opportunity to get back to the drawing board and make something new and beautiful; a complete new path to take. Read more>>

Courtney DeCamp | Actress and Screenwriter

I’ve tried to give up many times. I took on “normal” day jobs and even want back to school to try and find a career I could settle for. Each time I’ve tried to quit acting or writing, I’m offered a gig or a big audition lands in my lap. I take this as a sign every time that I am doing what I am meant to do. There is also a gnawing at my gut when I’m not pursing an acting/writing career. This is me and this is my calling. Read more>>

Eric Colton | Filmmaker

As a filmmaker, I heard from the beginning, ‘if there is anything else you’d rather be doing, do that, because this is really hard.’ And many times since, I’ve thought of those words. I suppose that has always given me my answer. If I gave up, I don’t know what else I’d do. I love being a filmmaker. A story-teller. The endless possibilities still out there for me in the film business. As long as I’m alive, I’ll be an artist who loves movies and the process of making them. And I think life is too short to not do what you love. If you have a dream you’re passionate about, I think you owe it to yourself to pursuit it as long as those thoughts dreams keep coming to you. Otherwise, you end up resenting those around you pushing you in other directions. Read more>>

Rohmon Merchant | Rapper, Writer, Producer, & CEO of Heritage Park Productions

I’m probably the foremost worse expert on giving up, I am very stubborn and don’t quit many things, however I can say with ease I definitely believe it is time to give up when your joy is truly gone. The hardest thing I believe to do is keeping your focus moving forward when your brand or goals seem to wall it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s time to quit, even if its constant for a while. The journey is always better than the destination, and when you over emphasize the latter greater than the former you truly take the joy completely out of your work. I do believe that smarter than quitting altogether I believe in adjustments. Maybe, your dream or idea is outdated, or approach might need to change a bit, or maybe need reinvention possibly. I don’t think give up should be an answer, you will always be haunted with the what if’s. If you still have joy in what you do. Read more>>

Anissa Morgan | Screenwriter

“You will win if you do not quit…” When fear, anguish, anxiousness, worry, or regret enter my heart, I ponder that phrase. You will win if you do not quit. The journey to film school, the journey post-grad, and the journey of adulting have had their share of blood, sweat, and many tears. I can recall the exact moment I walked across the stage to accept my MFA degree in screenwriting. I smiled at the crowd so my parents could get a good picture, yet I was terrified. Don’t get me wrong, I was relieved that I finally made it. I can say I have my MFA; I can be taken seriously in the industry and I can apply to jobs I’m qualified for. Yes, it was a great feeling, however, there was another feeling that began to take over as I packed up my apartment and ventured off to live closer to the city: fear. What if I don’t make it? What if I don’t have what it takes? What if my material never gets made? What if I’m a failure?. Read more>>

Bella Alubo | Singer, Songwriter & Actor

I think one never knows what the correct answer is to keep going or to give up. I believe that everything I set my mind to is achievable & it doesn’t mean there are no challenges, it doesn’t mean i’ll ever be able to see tomorrow or know what happens next. I think everyone has to decide for themselves whether to go on or to stop because they’re both very difficult choices. You just have to pick your struggle & stick to it. No one woke up knowing that something will definitely happen for them, we have to move by faith. Hoping is the fire that keeps the world going. There’s no knowing, there’s just believing & doing. Read more>>

Billie Carter-Rankin | Visual Artist

As cliché as it may sound, I try not to force anything. I’ve been working on trusting my voice more, especially with my work. I went through a phase where I heavily relied on outside validation – that if most people agreed or liked what I was doing then I should keep going in that direction. Ever since then I’ve worked on releasing that need for approval. So if I’m feeling like something is being rushed or doesn’t feel like my voice, I take my time until I figure out what it is that I’m trying to say. From experience I’ve learned that if I keep pushing forward, even if it’s a small step, it will eventually work out. Nothing lasts forever, not even creative blocks. I guess that gives me the hope to keep going. Read more>>

Sequioa Lawson | Founder, Executive Chef & Certified Health Coach

I know whether to keep going or give up by truthfully acknowledging whether or not what I’m doing is working to achieve my goals, purpose and dreams…or working against it. By keeping it simple, I keep myself free to move progressively and gain confidence through the experiences that arose to challenge my fidelity. Staying focused on what I’m protecting, projecting, accepting and expecting also help me determine whether to give up or keep going. It’s crucial to know truthfully what those things are, their origin and purpose to determine their continuance or cancelation. I prefer to safeguard those things that are good, peaceful and unifying. They matter most to me so, I keep going with what helps me increase in those and give up on what distracts and deters me from that. Read more>>

Ron Braverman | Artist

As an artist I continue my work because I simply don’t have a choice. It’s that simple. I have been driven for roughly 25 and I’m certain I have another 25 years of work to produce!. Read more>>

Jess Cummings | Dancer, Choreographer, Dance Instructor

I personally am averse to the words giving up. I don’t believe in giving up. I do however strongly encourage pivoting and changing things up if you’re feeling unhappy, stuck or feel something else pulling you. I think the only way to know when a pivot may be necessary is to really be in tuned with yourself and check in regularly with your gut. My heart has at times steered me wrong but my gut has always known what I needed, even if I have ignored it in some instances. Often times when my heart and gut have not been in alignment, it has helped me realize that a pivot is necessary. When I moved to LA, I had already been teaching dance and choreographing shows and productions for over 10 years. Although teaching and choreographing have always been a huge part of me, I felt I needed a break to focus on my own career as a dancer. Read more>>