Monday, October 29, 2012

Motivational Monday

(Elbert Hubbard)

The other day, a good friend of mine told me something that stopped me in my tracks. She said she's always thought it took a lot of courage to do what I did in my life. She was referring to when my husband (who was my boyfriend at the time) and I left the Northeast for the warmer climes of Florida. We knew no one. We had little money. He was going to school. I was going to work and write and prep for grad school. 

It wasn't easy. We hit bumps along the way. Grad school didn't work out for me. My writing career wasn't going the way I thought it would. We didn't live in the best neighborhood. People who I thought would always be in my life and be supportive and encouraging, no matter the physical distance between us, gradually weren't. 

Courage. It's not a word I would normally apply to myself  - and still wouldn't - but I understood what she meant. In that moment, I was proud of myself and grateful to her for recognizing how hard it actually was, how much of a chance I was actually taking.

You know how people say "at least you tried" when you attempt something and don't succeed? Let's say it to ourselves every time we step out of the box, start a new hobby, embark on a new career, go somewhere different for vacation, say "yes" when we would normally say "no," stand up for ourselves when it's not easy. 

Let's say it with pride when we succeed. And let's say it with pride when we don't. 

"At least we tried!"


  1. When my sister and I were really little, my dad would tell us to try to do something new (and a little scary) ever week. Like when I was in sixth grade, I memorized the Gettysburg Address and got to say it in front of the entire school.

    My dad told us that if we try something new like that but failed, he told us to call it a "glorious failure". And no matter if we succeeded or had our "glorious failure" we'd usually get a prize for it or something.

    It takes a lot of courage to "step of out your box" and do something you've never done before. And sometimes the experience along the way is worth a minor failure at the end?

    Sorry about my long comment. Lol :)

  2. Always better to try because we always regret the things we didn't do more than the things we did to.

  3. Jess - I loved your comment, no worries. :) And I think I'm going to steal the "glorious failure" phrase for myself, if you don't mind, of course. :)

    Alex - the older I get, the more I'm learning how true that is.

  4. Great post, I think the worst thing you can do in life is not try and then wonder what if you had? If you try you'll always learn something even if you don't succeed.

  5. Absolutely. Couldn't agree more. Fear of failure can stop you doing so much.

  6. I have said "At least you tried" to others and to myself when things haven't worked out. I mean it when I say it to others but I never meant it when I say it to myself. I'm far too hard on myself, I know, but I don't like it when I don't accomplish what I set out to do.

  7. Nick - it's hard though, isn't it, to see the lesson amidst the failure? Definitely something I need to keep working on. :)

    Simon - thanks!

    MJ - I know exactly what you mean. I think it's just something we have to be aware of and keep working on. Challenging ourselves isn't - or shouldn't be! - equal to beating ourselves up. Right?

  8. I can really relate to this post. And, I'm glad I finally tried things I was afraid to do for so long. It's amazing what can happen when you actually give yourself a chance!

    Loved your story over at One Forty Fiction too, so creepy!

  9. Julie - love that part about giving yourself a chance. So true!

    And your comment over at One Forty Fiction was great! Thanks! :)