Today is another one of those days. You know the kind? Where you realize—or should I say RE-realize?—a specific truth in life. Yoda’s Truth: Do. Or do not. There is no try. It’s a truth that is often masked, hidden, and pushed out of sight from ourselves. There’s a funk in my blood: apparently many of my “Do Not” blood cells have been replaced with “There Is No Try” blood cells. And the result is an increased propensity for risk, but—mother, don’t worry—of the healthy variety.
Matte-black Doc Martens. Respectably shaved stubble. Lucky socks with the stitched pattern of a Kraken attacking a galleon. Ironed pants. White dress shirt with subtle purple pattern. Crisp, sharp purple tie. I’m a Dapper Dan man. The word enthusiastic comes to mind, as the former adjective, nervous, is pushed from the forefront. Dozens of elevators carry people vertically inside the tallest of glass and steel. Floor 57 pressed, ears pop in the ascent—very weird—doors open to a carpeted lobby.
An interlude of The Empire Strikes Back variety…and Zuckerberg’s words of wisdom…
[Luke sees his X-Wing is about to sink into the bog]
Luke: Oh, no! We’ll never get it out now!
Yoda: So certain, are you? Always with you, what cannot be done. Hear you nothing that I say?
Luke: Master, moving stones around is one thing, but this is… totally different!
Yoda: No! No different! Only different in your mind. You must unlearn what you have learned.
Luke: All right, I’ll give it a try.
Yoda: No! Try not. Do… or do not. There is no try.
[Luke tries to use the Force to levitate his X-Wing out of the bog, but fails in his attempt.]
Luke: I can’t. It’s too big.
Yoda: Size matters not. Look at me. Judge me by my size, do you? Hmm? Hmm. And well you should not. For my ally is the Force, and a powerful ally it is. Life creates it, makes it grow. Its energy surrounds us and binds us. Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter. You must feel the Force around you; here, between you, me, the tree, the rock, everywhere, yes. Even between the land and the ship.
Luke: You want the impossible. [sees Yoda use the Force to levitate the X-Wing out of the bog and gets flustered when he does it] I don’t… I don’t believe it!
Yoda: That is why you fail.
The biggest risk is not taking any risk… In a world that changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks ~ Mark Zuckerberg
Before my appointment fetches me from the lobby, I need to remind myself of something—last minute mental Hail Mary Pass to the end zone. Not sure if you can call it a personal mantra, but the words look like this: “If you never try, that’s the same as someone saying ‘NO!'”
In reviewing past narratives (which I like to do occasionally), I have found similar notions in Challenging the Unknown, Unrealized Potential of Tomatoes, A Life Unlived, and Seedlings of Change—the latter of which reflecting a similar afternoon endeavor, like today, occurring 40 days ago. Clearly, this is a work-in-progress concept that I’ve been working on for quite sometime, indubitably fueled by my three-week, cross-country road trip.
So here it is, my personal philosophy (with some awesome formatting to visually accentuate my point):
- if you do not try for something, you are guaranteed to fail;
- if you try for something and someone says that you are not qualified or capable, then at least you tried, and that’s better than never trying in the first place;
- if you try for something and you have succeeded, then Master Yoda would be proud of you. That’s for sure.
The locked doors open. Mister Pressed Shirt and Crisp Tie walks forward: “Hi, are you Brian?”