Sunday, August 5, 2007


Persistence: It's natural to focus on bad breaks, but it shouldn't prevent us from giving it the old college try.
Only too often, I hear people use the expression, "But with my luck..."
"But with my luck, things won't go that way." "But with my luck, it will rain." "But with my luck, I can't help but fail." Occasionally, I find myself using that expression. And that can be a bad habit to get into.
Most of our good fortune doesn't just fall into our laps. Oh, sure, now and then someone wins the lottery or unexpectedly inherits a large wad of money, or even comes out on the long end at one of the local gambling casinos. But such occasions are rare. These are definitely the exceptions to the rule.
Usually, success and happiness begin with thoughts and daydreams, which we build into plans and schemes. As we build these "air castles," we often begin to foresee various problems that could arise should we begin building the real structure." We would be foolish not to look for such snags and begin thinking about solutions for them, should they arise. But if we are too easily discouraged and consider these problems as barriers to our progress, and as insurmountable, we will most likely let our golden dreams fall to the ground.
It's so much better to keep the dream alive. To keep the faith. And to keep our eyes open. A successful baseball batter doesn't just close his eyes and swing, but follows the pitch all the way in to the plate. If we see potential problems in our future, and consider them as challenges rather than roadblocks, we often can find solutions for them.
Thomas Edison's idea for the incandescent light bulb was a great one. Something that could benefit all of mankind for many generations. But its success depended on its inventor's persistence. He was forced to try almost every imaginable material before he found one that did not burn out immediately. But he did not consider these attempts as failures. He listed each as a success. With each burned-out bulb, he felt that he had successfully proven one more material as being unacceptable. And he continued looking for the one that was. He remained in the laboratory and created his own "luck."
One old fellow I know doesn't care too much for listening to others' sad tales and sob stories. Or hearing them tell about the negative things that are certain to happen "with their luck." His usual reply is ungrammatical, but short and to the point: " Them's the breaks."

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