When I was in college, one of my best friends posted this quote on her dorm door...
"If at first you don't succeed, redefine success!"
There are too many reasons in life to become discouraged. I'm not even going to attempt to list some - let your imagination run wild! I'm sure you can come up with at least one.
Growing up, everyone used to say that old adage: "If at first you don't succeed, try, try again." I admit, I get that "blah, blah" feeling when I hear that one. But I like my friends quote, and it pops into my head often. It could easily say, "If at first you don't succeed, don't get depressed, just redefine success." I think it's important to look for success even in...I hate the word, but here it is...failure. Sometimes our goals are unrealistic. Sometimes what we are capable of accomplishing in our lives at various points changes. Sometimes we have to lower our expectations of what we are able to accomplish. When I was pregnant and in the new baby stages of life this was essential for me.
I have realized in the last year though that when we are able, it can also be healthy to raise our expectations of what we can accomplish. When I was in the checkout line at Walmart a few weeks ago one of the headlines on a random magazine said:
"BE A SUCCESS STORY"
Just reading that made me laugh, and I realized that I wanted it. I want to be my own success story. This last year I've been trying to rediscover myself, to do things that a long time ago brought me joy. I've also been exercising, and I can honestly say that I actually like it now. I didn't think that was possible, but I do. It makes me feel better, and on cold days - makes me warm before I go to bed. Even when I'm tried, I find myself thinking, "I should exercise." I used to think people were nuts when they said things like that, but now I think it! I like challenging myself and enduring and finding a sense of accomplishment in that I didn't just quit, and that I can keep succeeding in my own life, even if in a small way.
I love the quote from the movie A League of Their Own when the coach, played by Tom Hanks, says:
"If it wasn't hard everyone would do it, it's the hard that makes it great."
Many things in life are that way. Many things worth doing anyway. Following the example of Jesus Christ is hard sometimes, but it's the hard, in part, that makes it great. Being a mother is a hard job, but it's also a great job. Sometimes it's the challenge of doing something and then overcoming that makes life worth living. The hard things are the most rewarding. The hard things bring the greatest sense of accomplishment. The hard things make us stronger. The hard things are greatest.