In which I stop flogging the dead horse

There comes a time when you realize that being at a crossroad is more about the need to stop flogging a dead horse and not so much about choosing a new direction. Your direction is fine. You just need to stop flogging the dead horse. The horse is dead. It doesn’t care. You’re just wasting your time and energy. Time to stop.

There are things in life that you shouldn’t persist with even if you stubbornly still think that they seem like a good idea. You know, when you sit there and tell yourself that there’s still hope, that “they” will change, that “they” will come around or see it your way. You have to weigh up the pros and cons. You have to ask yourself hard questions like “What’s in it for me?” and be prepared to admit that there’s nothing in it for you. Then you have to make the decision to stop flogging the dead horse. The dead horse isn’t going to change. It doesn’t care. It’s dead.

It’s not easy, I should know, I’m a seasoned dead horse flogger. The dead horses in my life that I flogged for too long and that still stand out in my mind the most are my two marriages. I should have flogged the husbands not the marriages. The result would have been different. Still, no point in having regrets about how you did things in the past. The proof is in the pudding and this is new pudding. It’s not dead horse pudding, not anymore.

As you can probably tell I really haven’t quite decided on a course of action yet. There’s not an exact plan of how to go about things except for giving up on flogging the dead horse. I have however eliminated the option of keeping the status quo. It’s been a pretty big step for me because in the past I’ve always been fearful of what lies beyond letting go and very much kept to the better the devil you know type deal. I want more for myself now; I want a lot more for myself.

Putting a higher price on yourself is really important and I think it lies at the pinnacle of being happy. You can’t go on compromising to the point that you sell yourself short every time, where it starts to become a chore to give rather than a joy. When you start feeling irritation and anger all or most of the time you need to stop. There’s much to be said for changing perspectives and expectations, and there always needs to be an element of that because it really pays off in a lot of situations, but I think it needs to go hand in hand with letting go to make room for new better things.

Or horses.

Horses that aren’t dead.

Maybe one should even switch the horse for a pony.


  1. Just don't flog a dead horse in mid-stream ;)

    If nothing else, if you stop being the one who gives all the time, the people who do nothing but take will wander off -- probably while muttering under their breath, but still, they'll be gone. Which is indeed making room for better things/people.

  2. Oh my god! Have I flogged a few dead horses in my time, the most recent being Mr Angry About Everything in France.

    You are so right!
    A dead horse is never going to enable you to gallop into the sunset, a dead horse is simply going to turn rotten and attract a swarm of flies.

    I wish I had read your post about dead horses while I was still flogging that one in France but at least I have read it now and the next time an apparently gift horse comes along in the shape of a man, not only will I look it in the mouth, I will also kick it to see if its really a dead horse!


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