“Most men fail because they quit too soon. They lose faith when the signs are against them. They do not have the courage to hold on, to keep fighting in spite of that which seems insurmountable. If more of us would strike out and attempt the ‘impossible,’ we would very soon find the truth of that old saw that nothing is impossible …. Abolish fear and you can accomplish anything you wish.”
C.E. Welch, business executive
While paging through a small booklet of inspirational quotes, this one jumped out at me — probably because I’ve hit a rough patch in my novel revision: I’ve had some major life issues to deal with and had to put my draft aside. I’ve misplaced my momentum, to put it mildly, and picking up the pieces seems like an overwhelming job. Maybe, like me, you need to jump start a project. Let’s deconstruct C.E.’s advice and see if it helps:
Keep going: Don’t quit too soon. I don’t know about you, but the break I’ve taken has made it hard to get back in the saddle. I have another project I’ve been working on a bit and I’m almost tempted to put my novel aside for a while. To my mind, that would be quitting: It would be letting it slide into “Neverland” — a bad idea!
Keep the faith: Even though the “signs are against” me right now, I’m going to ignore them. Faith, to me, is a belief in things unseen, and I believe in my work. I believe it has value and I know how mightily I’ve struggled to make it stronger, better, and truer. So I’m going to have faith that my story is meant to come to fruition, faith that I can finish it and get it out into the world, despite all appearances to the contrary.
Keep fighting: Find courage and hold on. “If more of us would strike out and attempt the ‘impossible,’ we would very soon find the truth of that old saw that nothing is impossible.” Someone, think it was Audrey Hepburn, once said that hidden inside the word “impossible” are two other words: “I’m possible.” I love that! If we keep fighting, if we keep pushing forward step by step, then what seemed impossible will become possible, then probable, then predictable — and we’ll get where we need to go.
Abolish fear: Here’s a great acronym for F.E.A.R.: False Evidence Appearing Real. What a relief to realize that fear is often just a paper tiger — a barrier of our own making that we can leap through if we can see it for what it is.
OK, here’s our recipe for getting out of our ruts, however deep they seem to be: Don’t quit, believe in our work, keep fighting toward completion, and forget about our fears, since they’re not really real. We can do this! Write on!
* This is the post I lost the other day (see Extraordinary Perseverance) and reconstructed. I’m happy to say, I think it’s better than the original. Hope you find it helpful!