In a recent segment of A Minute with Maxwell, where Leadership Authority, Dr. John Maxwell extemporaneously speaks on a word sent in by a subscriber, the word was “Try.’
Now, this is an interesting word because, first, like many, it has different meanings and connotations. Also, like most words, it triggers different meanings and contexts based on the belief system of the individual.
I thought that – as always – Dr. Maxwell handled the word with excellence. You can watch it here (and, subscribe to his series, if you’d like. I watch these minute-long gems practically every day. He’s an exceptional teacher).
I’d like to look at three different concepts of the word try:
- Non-Committment. Most of us have, at one time or another, asked someone to do something and they responded, “I’ll try.” Did they ever do it? Probably not. Why? Because they were not committed. By and large, the time one is most “committed to a thing” is at the point of decision. If they’re so uncommitted as to say “I’ll try” at the moment they are asked, it makes sense they won’t be any more committed as time passes. Please understand, unless they are “consciously saying no without having to say no” they might not even be aware of their own lack of commitment.
- “Do or do not. There is no try.” Interesting that this lesson from Yoda is perhaps my favorite movie line. More interesting is that I’ve never actually seen that movie. Actually, I still haven’t seen E.T. either but, hey, sometimes I’m a bit slow off the mark. 🙂 Now, while this example is somewhat related to the above example, it’s not quite the same.This one has to do with the person who truly desires to accomplish something, but perhaps doesn’t really believe it’s possible, or that it’s possible for him or her. And, this was the point of Yoda’s admonishment. Perhaps it’s one of my favorite sayings because I relate to the times I didn’t have the confidence to do something though, in fact, it was very doable.
- Try it – you might like it. This one doesn’t imply commitment or expectation (from yourself). It simply says that, if you are open to a new experience, go ahead and experiment. Try it. It may or may not be something that’s for you, but at least you checked it out.
In the world of personal development, the word “try” is often maligned. And, sometimes for good reason. However, like most everything, it’s probably best to first place it in its proper context. Sometimes, it’s a good thing. Other times, counterproductive.
What do you think?