I think my personal mottos could use some work.
A friend read me my horoscope last week, and, to me, it was the most comforting, wonderful thing I ever heard and I’ve been repeating the last line over and over to myself. The line? “It’s not too late.”
I’ve been meaning to post it on “the wall”– literally, the wall directly in front of my treadmill where I put happy things that are supposed to make me want to get up early and run. (A dismal failure, because NOTHING makes me want to wake up early.) But something just occurred to me looking at it; I am the Debbie Downer of inspirational quotes. I have hung up several that, on second look, are really backhanded compliments. Quotes like: “Rise above yourself” or “You are better than you think you are” and “I am not a dork” (that’s a punchline to a joke, so it’s not as pathetic as it sounds.)
“It’s not too late.” What does that even mean? Maybe “Don’t worry, you may achieve something, someday.” Or perhaps, “Hey, loser. You have totally squandered your life and talent up to this point but, what the hell, you’re not dead yet.” And this is what I find comforting? Ooh, that’s depressing. I work too damn hard to be secretly thinking that I haven’t accomplished anything. Trust me. The fact that I haven’t lain down in the path of an oncoming bus is, on some days, a MAJOR achievement.
I know people who would be perfectly comfortable hanging up truly positive quotes. Quotes that speak to their strength and potential and awesomeness. If I did that, posted a “I’m a rockstar!” sort of quote, I’d be afraid someone would see it, look at me and think, “Really? YOU?” Technically, I feel I’m more a kitten-on-a-branch-“Hang-in-there”-poster sort of gal. Like, I’m trying really, really hard, here, so no wisecracks, ‘kay? Looking at the wall this morning, however, I suspect these quotes might be pointing at the problem. Perhaps, if I would consider the possibility that I wasn’t, by nature, LAME– I might also believe that the set point for my success could be a bit higher. Something above, “Made it through another day without a nervous breakdown and/or call from social services. Woo HOO!”
So that’s it, I’m looking for new quotes to post on “The Wall.” Quotes that do not start from the assumption that I’m just lucky if I manage to put my shoes on the correct feet. We’re aiming higher, here, people! Although…I might have to sneak this one in, just for old times’ sake;
If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. Then quit. There’s no use being a damn fool about it.
One of my favorites is by Beckett:
Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.
I have another one about how sometimes we strive for things and we're really successful…and other times we're just stretching our souls. I can't remember it verbatim…it's at work. I'll look it up and send it your way.
I love this post, BTW. 🙂
Here's the other one…Maya Angelou:
Not everything you do is going to be a masterpiece, but you get out there and you try and sometimes it really happens. The other times you're just stretching your soul.