“Every day is new, with no mistakes in it.”
This is the first of two powerful life lessons I learnt long ago from the novel Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery. I quote it to myself often, especially when I find myself getting frustrated about falling behind in my daily goals and not achieving all I want to.
It’s so easy to beat ourselves up over failing to perform. Not enough words/exercise/networking. Too much TV/bad food/procrastination. There are so many obstacles to surmount when we’re aiming high. Let’s face it: the path of least resistance is NEVER the path towards our dream.
The good news is that even if we find ourselves meandering through a meadow of flowers (aka doing something pleasurable other than doggedly pursuing our goal), the route resets itself the very next day. The next day is our opportunity to avoid being lured down that pleasure-path and to instead tackle that tough climb up the mountain.
I’m not suggesting that procrastination is acceptable. That mindset will have us taking the meadow-path every time, doomed to circumnavigate that mountain, gaze up at the lofty peak for eternity. The only way to climb that mountain is to put one foot in front of the other and sweat it out.
But there is no point in dwelling upon the times when distraction overcomes us. It will happen — our mission must be to ensure it happens infrequently. But when it does happen, there is nothing at all we can do about it after the event, so we must banish it from our minds and focus on what we can control, which is our path on the very next day.
Look forward. Be positive. Take control.
Every day is new, with no mistakes in it. This sentiment, so simply expressed in Anne of Green Gables, really helps keep me positive, enhances my discipline, and allows me to refocus. Somehow it puts everything in perspective.
Yes, I stuff up, frequently. But every day is an opportunity to not stuff up.
(The second life lesson I learnt from Anne of Green Gables is never to hold a grudge… Poor misunderstood and much-maligned Gilbert Blythe. But that’s another topic entirely.)
So does anyone reading this have a tendency for self-flagellation when they fail to deliver on their daily goals? What is your approach to overcoming the disappointment and moving on? I’d love to hear your thoughts…
Addendum 30 May
I thought I’d better check the actual quote from the book, which is:
“… tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it (yet)…”
It’s from the end of chapter 21 – A new departure in flavouring.