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Jamie Gruber Blog/Quit Your Job/Why I Told My 7 Year Old to 'Stop Trying'

Friday, November 18, 2022

Why I Told My 7 Year Old to 'Stop Trying'

Lessons we teach our kids, apply to us WAY more often than we care to admit!

My older son was relaxing on the couch watching a show. On the floor sat a spread of legos broad enough to take 3-4 steps and dig one into your foot each time! I had to go upstairs to shower and asked him to clean up the legos quick so we can get going when I finish my shower.

20 minutes later I came down and found him still on the couch with not one lego misplaced from where it was before I went upstairs.

Me: "Bud - come on - these legos need to get cleaned up" Him: "Daddy - I'm trying"


What followed next probably wasn't my best Dad moment. He says that often - 'I'm trying'. At 7 he's still learning the meaning behind words but oh my GOODNESS it's maddening to hear that you're trying when you didn't do anything!!

As you read this, it sounds ridiculous. That smirk on your face is because you may have a kid that has done the same thing - said he/she is trying while having done nothing to make progress.

Funny thing is - we do the same thing!!

We SAY we want to change our lives, quit our job, get in shape. Then we do nothing. We don't build the side hustle, we don't get to the gym. But when explaining to others we'll say 'I'm trying to get to the gym 3x/week' (even though we've gone zero times). Or 'I'm trying to acquire real estate to replace my income' but no deals were reviewed and no offers made.

The lesson for my son was this:
- Trying is DOING and failing
- Trying is NOT intending to DO

If I set a goal to read 5 books this quarter and read 3 - I TRIED to read 5.
If I set a goal to read 5 books this quarter and read 0 - I did NOT try - I intended

I have conversations often with people who are 'trying' to change the trajectory of their life.

They're dissatisfied with work or their business. Often, they have amazing intentions but fear the work it will take for various reasons. - What if I fail? - What will people say about me? - What if what I pursue is not my true passion and I waste time and effort? To which the standard reply is: - Failing is part of the process - Who cares? - You won't know unless you TRY!!!! If you've been INTENDING to start a side hustle, get in shape, etc then do yourself a favor and take one step in the direction you're INTENDING to go. In that moment, you've change from INTENDING to TRYING!! Failure, judgement and uncertainty are natural consequences for those that TRY to grow. Accept and embrace it. Celebrate it! You're taking action because TRYING = DOING! For the 7 year old in all of us, always remember... Trying is not about the INTENT ... it's about the ATTEMPT!

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