When we ‘give up’, it’s usually done out of frustration or defeat. We wanted the thing and we didn’t get it.
Surrender, however, has some subtle differences (maybe not on the battlefield, but as a spiritual/emotional connotation of the words).
When we surrender, we’re making an intentionally conscious choice to let the thing go and walk away.
You can tell the difference between giving up and surrendering by the emotional resonance inside you after you do it…
After we give up, we feel wounded. We shrink. Our shoulders constrict. We feel bruised and beaten. This thing happened against our will. We feel we’re not enough. And the thing we gave up on either remains an idol to be won at some point in the future or we end up hating/resenting it (neither of which are healthy options).
After we surrender, however, a weight is lifted off of our shoulders. We can breathe again. We experience a simplicity that’s empowering and freeing. We’ve created room for something new to emerge. And we can look back at the thing surrendered with a calm, loving gaze. No attachment to it. No aversion to it. Complete release. Moving on.
Giving up feels like defeat. It lingers heavy on the soul. Surrender leaves us feeling more alive than ever.
Although I don’t really ever recommend giving up, surrendering is something we could all do a lot more of.