Tuesday, January 27, 2009
So, I was looking for inspiration for a blog today. I thought if I looked up some quotes about inspiration I might get inspired. The first one that struck me was:
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit”
Wow! Thanks for smacking me cold upside the face Ari my man. What do I repeatedly do? I come to work, eat, surf the World Wide Web. Are these the things I’m excellent at? There not necessarily the things I want to be excellent at. I want to be excellent at writing, acting, and creating wonderful things. So according to Aristotle if I want to be excellent at them I have to do them more. Oh man, where am I going to find that kind of time? I guess if these are my passions I need to make the time for them.
Let me see what the next quote that struck me can teach me:
“Motivation will almost always beat mere talent.”
-Norman R. Augustine-
This rings so true to me. Have you ever known someone who just wouldn’t stop talking to you about something, no matter how many I don’t care vibes you sent out? That’s passion; it could be for a book, television show, or just a great idea they have. I imagine someone with a movie pitch that they think is great trying to sell it to the studios. First time out they get the door slammed in their face. Second time the result is the same. Eventually they pack it in and give up. What about the guy who doesn’t give up? Who treats every slamming door as incentive to move on? I just feel like his passion will eventually find an equally passionate ear to listen and act on.
Maybe my lesson here is not to quit. Not take the first distraction or put down and use it as an excuse to stop doing what I’m passionate about. After all, if it’s truly a passion shouldn’t I really not be worried about trivial things?
Excellent, time to move on to my next quote:
“The greatest mistake you can make in life is to be continually fearing that you will make one.”
We’re all going to drop the ball every now and then. Sometime were going to be short of the mark but we can’t live our lives fearing those times. If we do we might very well miss the joy of hitting the mark. Some of the best feelings I have had were when I knew I had done or said the best thing possible.
For example, right before Christmas a woman came into the Gothic. She said she needed some suggestions for books for her granddaughter. She had no idea what was popular these days but knew she wanted to encourage her with some good books. She was directed to me by some of the other staff here. I went over and picked out 7-8 strong titles. I figured she would pick 2 and I’d never see her again. Boy was I wrong. She bought all 8 titles and I saw her again after we reopened in January. She actually came seeking me out, stopped me and thanked me for the help. She said her granddaughter loved all the books and they were perfect. Well that’s a feeling I’d like to have a few more time I tell you.
Had I never taken the chance of recommending those titles I would not have experienced that wonderful joy. Obviously, it could have gone the other way. Her granddaughter might have hated those boos, or read them already and disliked them greatly, or even not been her style. Honestly, I never thought about that scenario though. I just recommended books I was passionate about, like City of Ember, Inkheart, and Kingdom Keepers. I knew they were great books so the thought that someone might not enjoy them didn't cross my mind.
On to my last quote, the last lesson of inspiration:
“Do or do not. There is no try.”
-Yoda, character in the movie The Empire Strikes Back-
Trying things indicates the possibility of failure. I should not try to find more time to write, I should just write. I shouldn’t try to finish reading this book; I should just plow through it. I’m an excuse maker: “ I didn’t have the time.”“I forgot.” or my favorite “I haven’t got around to it yet.” My excuses are standing in the way of my progress at things I enjoy.
That’s not a bad truth from a little green Muppet.