There are many words or slang in the English language that either annoy me, bother me or trouble me.
I thought if I had to see or read a post with “Bae” in it one more time, I’d vomit. If there was ever a contest for dumbest slang words, I’d nominate that one. There are of course others that could make the list.
Then there are clever words that were kinda amusing as I watched my daughter in law use the word “clutch”
She would use it in a situation and ask my son or myself, “did I use it right?” that alone was entertaining.
( for the record, it means exactly what you need, exactly when you need it)
Then there are normal words that trouble me when I go to write them ’cause I feel like a first grade kid again having to think them through….. “Am I spelling it right???”
Restaurant, Wednesday, February, Rhyme, Rhythm and a plethora of others make me slow down my typing skills. ( for the record, I just had to very carefully, methodically, type those out 😉 )
And they let me have a blog………
But there is one tiny little, easy to spell, almost innocuous word that can always trouble me.
It’s defined as …. “To make an effort or attempt to do something”
Now you’re probably sitting there tossing down your morning coffee rubbing sleep from your eyes wondering why I’m over here hating on such a tiny word.
Maybe because when I hear the word used it comes along with conditions.
I’ll try to be there…..
I’ll try to get the time off…..
I’ll try to call…..
I’ll try to make the meeting….
I’ll try to come by…..
I’m going to try and go to the gym….
I’m going to try and get up earlier to workout….
I’m going to try to eat better…..
Are you seeing it? when you use the word “try” you’re leaving yourself an out, a way to commit but still escape responsibility or follow through if you decide you’d rather not.
If someone tells me something and they use the word “try” in it, I’ve already dismissed them as not being serious about what’s being discussed.
They are giving themselves a way out.
They are going to “attempt” or “make an effort” to do something but there’s a strong probability it won’t happen.
Hey, I’m not pointing fingers. I’ve used it before too. Maybe that’s why I can say this, maybe I see it a bit more clearly.
Do or Don’t.
Do or don’t. Skip the “try”.
Yes, I understand it requires commitment to go in one direction or another but at least it’s decisive.
But let’s take it out to our commitment to ourselves. When we say we are going to “try” and eat better, start an exercise plan, go to the gym, get to the doctor etc. we are giving ourselves an out, a way to escape from the self inflicted torture we are setting ourselves up for.
Exercise can be work, hard work.
Losing weight involves making different choices and learning to eat better foods and perhaps leaving some behind.
Going to the doctor who is going to tell us that we are over weight and need to lose some for our health convicts us. Well, hopefully it does and you listen and take steps to change things.
The whole process promises to make us… uncomfortable.
No wonder we throw in the word try when it comes to lifestyle changes.
To try something is to accept the possibility of failure. If you set out to do something, the possibility of failure doesn’t enter your mind.
I remember after I had finished my ( I think, third, half marathon) the thought came to me that now was the time for a full.
At first, I dismissed it as craziness and endorphins from running my best half yet.
The idea persisted. But gosh, that’s a full 26.2 miles of hoofing it along on my own two feet!
That’s a pretty long way.
It didn’t take much for me to commit to it. I knew it was time. I knew I was ready.
I signed up and found the training plan I wanted to use.
It hit me one day not long into my eagerness to pursue this new adventure.
The dialog went something like this….
“What, and I mean WHAT are you thinking?? 26.2 miles!” ( this would be my logical brain speaking)
My free spirit , not sane part of my brain responded, “Yeah, I know. I get that. It’s pretty long. I can do this.”
Logical brain… “you’ve not really thought this through. You are trying something you’ve never done. It’s long. It’s hard. What if you fail? What if you can’t do it?”
That brought me up.
I was trying something I’d never, ever considered in my life. I must be insane. Who signs up for a 26.2 mile run???
What if I couldn’t do it? What if logical brain really WAS right?
You know what I did?
I stomped logical brain down, never let myself consider again that I couldn’t do it or would fail at it, trained my butt off, and ran my first marathon that year on one of the hottest November days Texas had seen.
It was brutal. But I finished with the goal to do one again the next year.
I had never been more physically wasted, tired, drained ( physically and emotionally) ever in my life.
It was exhilarating.
Taking on and training for a marathon, it gave me the confidence I could do anything, that I can try anything and that I can take on the world.
I did another marathon, and then a 50k. If you’ve followed me for awhile then you know I also have gone on to do a duathlon and am training for my second this year.
I would have accomplished none of that if I hadn’t been determined and just set out to do it.
I never allowed the idea of failure to come into my mind again. Training and then doing it made me victorious no matter what. It really comes down to our “state” of mind, what we believe, what we focus on.
I never approached it as I’m going to “try” because that would give me an out, a way to say, “hey, this is hard, I’m old, I don’t have what it takes, but at least, I tried!”
No. I know I would’ve hated myself for caving into such things.
I would challenge you to remove that word when you approach new or challenging goals or plans in your life.
Contemplating a new exercise or a new goal? Maybe you are going to find healthy recipes or join a class.
Think of how you use the word “try” in general, but specifically when it comes to new challenges. Don’t allow “try” to be your escape hatch.
With a different perspective you might find yourself removing obstacles and doing amazing things you never thought you’d accomplish.
Have you thought like that before? Have you thought you’d “try” something fully knowing you might not commit to the process?