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Thursday, January 23, 2014

Archive Thursday: Don't be discouraged.


A word whose definition reads:

The feeling of despair in the face of obstacles.

It's that feeling in the pit of your stomach that says, "maybe you should just give up."

Or the voice in your head that taunts you, chanting: 

"You're just not good enough."
"They're much better than you."
"No one likes you."
"Why are you wasting your time?"
"You'll never succeed in life."
"You're such a failure."
"Look at what you did."

And on and on it goes . . .

When I thought about what topic I wanted to write on next, discouragement seemed like the obvious choice.

You see, as I write this, I'm not only trying to motivate you, I'm trying to keep myself from being ripped to shreds by the talons of discouragement.

Recently, I've found myself struggling to silence the voices in my head that keep me from moving forward. The overwhelming fear of failure and rejection is exactly what the voices of discouragement need to stop me dead in my tracks. When I decided to step away from my career as a teacher and go full steam ahead with my dreams, never had I imagined I would be met with this much resistance. 

Resistance not from the outside, but from myself. 

The constant feeling that my "build something from nothing" dream would end up being just nothing in the end. Sometimes I stop and ask myself, what is it that I'm doing wrong? Am I too critical? Did I say something wrong? Or is it just me?

Have you found yourself in a similar situation lately?

As I contemplated giving up my dream and returning to the comforts of my teaching career, I came across a number of quotes that seemingly steered me back to the right path and I want to share them with you:

 The Uncertainties of Life
 Send your grain across the seas,
    and in time, profits will flow back to you.
But divide your investments among many places,
    for you do not know what risks might lie ahead.
When clouds are heavy, the rains come down.
    Whether a tree falls north or south, it stays where it falls.
Farmers who wait for perfect weather never plant.
    If they watch every cloud, they never harvest.
Just as you cannot understand the path of the wind or the mystery of a tiny baby growing in its mother’s womb, so you cannot understand the activity of God, who does all things.
Plant your seed in the morning and keep busy all afternoon, for you don’t know if profit will come from one activity or another—or maybe both.
-Ecclesiastes 11

 Nearly every man who develops an idea works it up to the point where it looks impossible, and then he gets discouraged. That’s not the place to become discouraged. 
– Thomas Edison

 "Don't let life discourage you; everyone who got where he is had to begin where he was."
-Richard L. Evans
 Never let the odds keep you from doing
what you know in your heart you were meant to do.
-H. Jackson Brown, Jr. 

I hope these few excerpts will inspire you to press on as they have been doing for me. 

The craziest thing is, as soon as we're about to give up, that's when our moment of break through arrives. If we just keep pressing forward past our feelings of discouragement, we will overcome what seems like the end and start living in a new, glorious beginning.