“You only fail when you stop trying” – really?

“the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”   Albert Einstein

I quite like a good motivational quote and have used many over the years.  Here is a list of some of my favourites ..

  • If you want to fly like an eagle, don’t mix with turkeys
  • If there’s no light at the end of the tunnel march down there and light the bloody thing yourself
  • If you want something you’ve never had, you must be willing to do something you’ve never done
  • A ‘mistake’ repeated more than once is a decision
  • Where focus goes, energy flows


deadflowerOne I wish I’d heard earlier in life is ‘When it’s over leave – you don’t continue to water a dead flower’. I can look back and think of careers and relationships I had where I gave them my all, when even a paramedic couldn’t have brought them back to life.  So why did I feel the need to keep trying to breathe life in to these things when I should have just walked away?  Because I would have failed.

I’d already failed – failed to notice what was best for me, failed to see time had passed me by, failed to recognise when to get the heck out of there.  Good lessons come out of these situations but what should have taken weeks to sink in took years – years I won’t get back.


So my advice to myself these days is when things aren’t working and I’ve given it my very best shot then stop trying, fail sooner, there is such a thing as TOO LATE so if it’s not right then recognise it and do something different.

‘Shoot for the moon, if you miss you can still play with the stars’.

by Anita Jeram
by Anita Jeram






6 thoughts

  1. I’ve always hated quotes like the one in the tittle. What if you are simply (for whatever reason) not capable of doing something? You could drive yourself crazy trying over and over and failing over and over. It’s ok to fail as you say, sometimes it’s a very good thing to accept that, so you can move onto something else. I think the problem with certain quotes is that they need a specific context in which to make any sense. I do love the one about lightly the bloody tunnel yourself – haha!


  2. i am finding these things so true as time passes. It’s painful. Who was it that said ‘time is the fire in which we burn’….


  3. I haven’t heard any of these quotes before and they are all simple and true messages. A bit like yourself, I wish I’d heard “When it’s over leave – you don’t continue to water a dead flower” earlier in life. This really resonates with me and I must have brought my dead flower back to life using fertiliser as well. Sometimes it’s worth persevering to achieve your end result. 🙂


    1. Thanks Lucy. I’m an avid gardener and spent many a time trying to cajole and revive something I planted in the wrong place. I agree with you it is worth persevering for the end result, I just need to ‘plant’ myself in the best place to achieve it – which is where I think I may have been going wrong 🙂


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