Do you remember the lyrics from the hit song The Gambler sung by the great Kenny Rogers?
“You’ve got to know when to hold’em,
know when to fold’em,
know when to walk away,
and know when to run.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard and spoken and sung those lyrics in my lifetime. They seem to be a piece of wisdom that stuck like glue to our cultural identity, so much so that I have trouble cutting off the song in my head once I’ve heard it.
How about you? Are you going to spend the rest of the day humming and/or singing it.
Well, don’t blame me. Blame Vanessa Hurst who turned on my songathon when I read her article on The Charter for Compassion website. It’s definitely worth a read.
She rang my bell not only with the song but with a habit I — and I imagine many of you — have and that is not knowing when we should hold’em when we should be fold’em.
Persistence is a word we usually pass along as a compliment, but there are times when persistence can be more of a problem than a solution.
To persist in a difficult situation when we’re trying to bring about needed change can be incredibly courageous. But to persist in an untenable situation can be analogous to hitting your head against a very solid wall, and that is not courage but foolishness.
What comes to mind are women (and men, as well) who too often persist in destructive relationships instead of realizing when they need to fold’em. Kudos to those who somehow have the strength to fold and move on, and to their many friends and families who don’t accuse them of not persisting, but instead offer a hand up and out.
I am definitely not a habitual persister, but in the future I hope to be more mindful of when I need to hold’em and when I need to fold’em.
How about you?
(Thank you to Proman today for creating and sending this post.)