'Trying' to do something/achieve something has gone out of fashion. Countless people the world over are judged each day and written off for trying and failing. And yet each one of us knows that no new skill is learned without trying and failing, trying and failing and trying and failing again. Take the small child learning to walk, That child will fall down many times before she succeeds. In most families, even very dysfunctional ones, the child who is trying to stand up and walk will be praised, encouraged and made much of every time. This method works. The child learns to trust their own instinct to try. The child does not give up. The child learns to walk.
For too many people this is the last time in their lives that they will receive this joyful encouragement. Most will go to school, and be judged and graded. Then they will go out into the world and continue to be judged by the 'success' of their actions and not by the intentions of their hearts.
No wonder then the world is full of despair.
Today, I'm thinking we need to turn this on it's head. We need to say to ourselves and others who are trying new things
'Fair play to you!' (as we say here in Ireland)
'That took guts!'
'I respect the effort you put into this'
And why might we do this? There are so many answers to this question.
If we do not try, we will never learn.
Trying is a fine thing because it is a better choice than turning away and not trying at all.
Trying and learning from our mistakes means we do better next time.
We cannot be the difference we want to see in the world without first trying to be that difference.
Now I'm not talking about the people who salve their consciences by saying 'well at least I tried' and then walk away. I'm talking about those who commit to a task, knowing that they will not always 'get it right' but that they will try and keep on trying. Even when they fall down, even when they don't 'succeed'. Even when they are judged. The ones who will get up each morning and try again. The ones who will crawl away with the pain of the judgement until they are strong enough to come out again and try one more time.
And the judgement is in us all. We judge ourselves and we judge others. We need to pause when we find ourselves in judgement and ask ourselves. 'Who does this judgement serve?' Does my self judgement spur me on or is it a whip for my back that leads to despair? Is my judgement of others a way for me to avoid taking action myself or is it a simple acknowledgement of an undeniable fact? These are tough questions and there is no 'one size fits all' solution.
I grew up in a world that said 'you should leave it to the experts'. I live in a world that those 'experts' created. All around me are people who have decided that they are the experts and they know best. My world is dominated and decimated by experts. So today I want to praise those who are not experts, those who are called amateurs and volunteers. Today I want to praise the art of trying, the craft of learning by mistakes, the humility of those who know they are not perfect but still keep on trying. I want to value those who do not exclude but seek to include. Today I want to say thank you to all those who try....
Copyright MBrennanKerry 2018