It's been said many times before that the only way to fail is to quit. While this is true, some times we need to take a step back and ask ourselves if our efforts are really worth it. But when it is the right time to give up?
The only thing sadder than a tainted official not knowing when to call it quits is a metaphysical being not knowing when to say when. This is a dilemma that is not only unique to those holding office in the Malaysian Hockey Federation but it is something that all sports officials here do, they just do not know when to bid goodbye, even though the writing is on the wall.
The unfortunate thing about not knowing to call it quits will eventually lead to their careers ending in undignified fashion. Many of those seeking election, re-election and making a comeback, have been in the sport for a good 15 to 20 years and in reality this is all they have known since their teenage years.
Therefore, emotionally it is gut wrenching and difficult to wake up one day and just leave everything behind, but the reality of the situation is some of them just should not have been there in the first place.
Besides the glamour thing, like rubbing shoulders with royalty, there are intangible things that are to be missed, the money making, the talking cock banter and the feeling they go through as they look down upon others.
That is why some of these officials want to squeeze every last drop out of their careers.
Generally, ego is a dominant factor, but oftentimes it is pure revenge that drives these officials to stay beyond their welcome. Ego leads the official to the conclusion that the deterioration of the institution is someone else's fault.
The coaches are the one who always screw up, the malcontents in the office, the civil servants who never get anything right, are all a convenient rationale for justifying a prolonged stay.
Some officials have tunnel vision and don't seem to realize that the failures of those around them are rooted in their own failures as officials of the association.
Others however, exist on revenge, that everyone is out to get them and they'll be damned if they will leave on any but their own terms.
These are the type of officials who create the biggest problems for their successors.
Experience is something that has no substitute but there comes a point when the negatives outweigh that.
So when is the right time to call it quits? One has to take a look at the following questions and situations and come to a conclusion.
When you don't enjoy your work; When everything that goes wrong is someone else's fault; When being out of the office at an inane conference is an occasion that can't be missed; When you think that everyone is out to get you; When you spend more time on your cell phone than your desk phone; When the words "due process" for the first time really mean something; When you think your evaluation has been "cooked.” When your superiors have more meetings without you than with you ; When one of your inferiors is consulted more than you ; When you spend more time with people you used to dislike than time with people you admire.
If all the above is happening, then you know that the writing is on the wall and its time to look elsewhere.
There are no iron clad signs but some are telltale indications that a change of scenery would be "a good thing." For the grass may look greener elsewhere.