54. Make an effort, not an excuse

“I think I’ve already mentioned my Uncle Ted — he was a great guy and I really missed him. Although he was one of those practical types, he was always coming up with sayings, you know, pieces of wisdom, mottos to live by, that sort of thing, which I suppose he’d heard sometime somewhere and because they made sense he must have kept a mental file of sayings to bring out if one fitted the circumstances.

“Like he once said, after I’d made a blunder, something like how I should ‘forget the mistake, but remember the lesson’. It was that sort of saying that I’m talking about, usually old-timey but a lot of them made sense… I think I only realised that much later, when I was remembering back to the days when Uncle Ted was around.

“One that came back to me recently was ‘make an effort, not an excuse’. At the time I was doing just that, going at things in a half-arsed way and just making excuses for myself for the obvious fact that I wasn’t getting anywhere and just going through the motions.

“But the thing is, once I’d pulled myself together and really put in, in a wholehearted way, it really did make a difference.”

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