Gumption, Strength To Deal With "It All"
Annie Rix Militz said that the only way out of a situation is to go by it. Well, looking at most situations, lives, and realities, for the most part I tend to agree with her. For the most part also, hindsight is clearer than foresight in everyday life. So, you have a clue why I paraphrased and quoted Ms. Annie Militz on this one. When I think of reality, I would love to go by everything “the easy way”, but, sometimes the easy way is not possible, indeed though, sometimes it is possible to avoid the hard way. Here is the complete catch: Sometimes to genuinely grow we have to go by something to genuinely learn it, or we get nothing if we avoid the lesson.
For example, I learned Algebra, Calculus and progressive Statistical Math at an early age. What helped me was doing the older boys homework, and teaching them hypnotic techniques to pass tests and memorize information quickly. The thing was, though, they skipped over the genuine experience of learning the material for themselves like Barry Bonds of the San Francisco Giants or Lance Armstrong of specialized bicycling in the Tour De France skipped over the authentic effort to get their sports records. Sure, the guys passed the tests, but ultimately they attained nothing, really. They skipped over the efforts needed to genuinely “really do it” like Barry Bonds with the steroids and Lance Armstrong with the testosterone doping. Indeed, when called upon to genuinely use the knowledge and “really do it”, taking that sort of “easy way out”, it will be the hardest thing of all. That is where the worst payment comes in, and ironically the best understanding of why it happened comes after the fact.
“After failure, redemption comes with gumption, baby.” my Grandmother Edna Van Porter on my Mother’s side used to say, and I used to be “stupid enough” to ask “What do you average, Grandma?” She used to give me the same answer over and over patiently, as intelligent, realistic and gritty as she was. She was not perfect, but intelligent, realistic and gritty about life having been around the blocks of life and existence in this world a bit with a few marriages and many kids including my own dear Mom.
So, I will tell you my answer to that question then end this article: As long as you can reinvent yourself, there is not any such thing as failure. Genuine quitting and taking the easy way out or cheating is failure, but to put in the grits, sweat, persistence and effort honestly is redemptive gumption and nothing else. The weakest people quit. The strongest people just change approaches and persist. What do you think happened to beauty queen Vanessa Williams anyway? Everyone remembers her more than the beauty queens that were winners for the years before 1984 and winners after 1984 because she had that gumption to persist. Sure, I could go on with already better examples, but I wanted to use a shared example to show that what I am saying is real, gritty and truly honest, real, and deeply meaningful to all. So, I end again with a quote by Calvin Coolidge, former President of the United States of America:
“Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more shared than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is complete of educated derilcts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.”