advice on ending.

Dad, morning coffee in montana (2)Dad, morning coffee in montana (1)

It was Longfellow that said "great is the art of beginning, but greater is the art of ending". And, he was right. Endings are hard to navigate. There's the question of when and why, and the question of how. It's easy to burn bridges and go out in flames, but ending with grace? that's complicated.

Whenever I come to a place that looks like the "beginning of the end" the first person I call is my Dad. He gives the best advice for situations when my emotions run high, and my rationality runs low. 

Here are a few of the things he's told me over the years about ending:

You can leave any time you feel it is in your best interest. But, learning to apologize even when you feel there is no reason [other than someone expects it] is part of the team mentality.
Don't use a single incident as an excuse to leave. That is called quitting. And you have never been a quitter. If you feel that you can no longer give what is expected of you, and that is your reason for leaving, that is called resigning. 
If you choose to resign, do it in an unemotional, professional fashion and you will feel much better about it down the road.
I think my favorite is the last one, and I remind myself of it often. Despite how good it feels at first to act out in anger or spite, it's the times I've spoken with reserve that make me feel the best, looking back. 

Has anyone ever given you advice on ending? 
I'd love to hear it. 

(p.s) more advice from my dad : on soul mates, on spray paint safety, on self respect.
(photos) on film with minolta srt-201 - which I found at The Goodwill in Montana, the day before this was taken.


  1. Such wise words from your father :)

  2. I love his distinction between quitting and resigning. I always appreciate it when you share bits of your dad's wisdom with the rest of us. :)

  3. Hi! I found your blog a few months ago and have been enjoying your words and images ever since.

    In answer to your question here is advice that someone online gave me years ago. Ask yourself two questions: 1) are you learning anything new here? And 2) is there any possibility of change? If you answer "no" to both questions, it's time to move on.

    Don't know if that'll help you, but it has helped me many times where deciding what to do next.

  4. My favorite

    “If you want a happy ending, that depends, of course, on where you stop your story.”

    - Orson Welles

    1. Caitlyn, that is a great line! thank you for sharing.

  5. "It's easy to burn bridges and go out in flames, but ending with grace? that's complicated."

    amen to this.

  6. i seriously love this sam. your dad sounds incredible. i could have used this advice a bit ago BUT im going to archive it for when i need to use it later. love you.

  7. Beautiful advice. I'm pretty stoked about reading his thoughts on spray paint as well. And also, your quote from hook literally, and embarrassingly, brought me to tears. It's my favorite movie of all time, and that line is so loaded with nostalgia and truth I just lose it everytime.

    1. Kimia, I'm so happy that line from Hook turned up again at just the right time. I love it too - and I always think of it when one adventure ends. Because the truth is all of life is an adventure.

  8. What direction from your father. Touching post, Sam. My favorite is the second one on "Why."


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