Still Chasing

Inspirational quotes – Well meaning advocacies supporting those venturing along a path in search of aspiration fulfillment. In particular, it’s intended audience of the disillusioned, disheartened or fatigued dreamer.

Words of guidance encouraging those whose half full glass has mutated into one that’s half empty, that nothing good comes without strong foundations and tenacity when in pursuit of your objectives.

As Julie Andrews taught us in the song Something Good from The Sound of Music:-

Nothing comes from nothing
Nothing ever could
So somewhere in my youth or childhood
I must have done something good

I’ve no idea if her character, novice nun Maria, had done good in her youth or childhood. That being said, though, in the refrain she wasn’t even singing about achieving dreams through hard graft, so I’m unsure why I even added the lyrics, or referenced the movie.

The words in that verse by Maria relaying karma had instigated the act of her and the naval captain’s happiness at falling in love. The righter of wrongs repaying her for past good deeds, along as a thank you for teaching it the words to Do-Ra-Me.

The length and quality of these sage-like prophecies can vary from a simple three words like “Hang in there!”, to more erudite offerings like late US author E.E. Cummings’ “Once we believe in ourselves, we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight, or any experience that reveals the human spirit.”

Some quotes from the less enlightened, although equally well meaning, aren’t quite as well thought out. I’m thinking of something like “Don’t worry if your writing isn’t well received, Gaz. You’ve always got your crowd noises and whistling skills to fall back on!” …… Or “The world needs burger sellers too!”

I’m no psychologist, but I guess the key to effective encouragement and influencing is to pitch the advocacy to the dreamer at the right level. For instance, with a sensitive person a more gentle approach is generally required. Alternatively, some individuals respond more tenaciously to tough love; only requiring the receipt of a disparaging remark to reembark on their aspirational pathway.

Telling someone “You’re not working hard enough to reach your goal!” is only one message, but achieves very different responses depending on the thickness of it’s recipients skin. A comment potentially breaking the fragile, while igniting a fire of determination in the more stoic.

From a personal point of view, I can be motivated by either disparaging words or plaudits depending on my mood at the time. A situation I’d guess that makes inspiring me, or avoiding incurring my wrath, a more complex task than those less capricious of behaviour.

My late dad used to try motivate his offspring by advocating no matter what we undertook “Just do your best’. Admittedly, something I didn’t always adhere to, particularly if I didn’t enjoy the task at hand, or it’s a scenario that doesn’t play to my strengths.

I very much subscribe to Steve Jobs thoughts that “If you are working on something that you really care about, you don’t have to be pushed. The vision pushes you.”

Despite finding many of their messages the same, just in different flavours, reading philosophical teachings does help refocus my mind during times of doubt about achieving creative goals.

The main inspirational message that feeds this literary journey being ‘You only regret the dreams you didn’t chase’.


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