Do Or Do Not, There Is No Try -Yoda

“Mom, Mom, Mom, I just learned the coolest thing in the whole world!” said my teenage daughter obviously thrilled with her new perspective. As a parent, I've learned, albeit slowly, over the course of raising them, that they know everything. All the lessons life has gifted me over the decades, she at 13, has surpassed them in-depth and experience, at least according to her.

Her latest interest/obsession includes the TikTok trending thing called “shifting”. If you talk with her it’s as though her entire life she had this interest, especially with the rich enthusiasm she claims at this moment.

“Tell me more,” I say. The three words when offered from an authentic place can only result in a connection.

“I just need to stop trying, that’s what has been preventing me from shifting. I just need to stop trying.” Her enthusiasm equaled a person experiencing enlightenment, transcendence, or an a-ha moment on steroids.

“I’m listening,” I say.

“You either do or you don’t,” she says so simply.

I ask in return, “Do you know who said that?”

She looks at me baffled I would have any knowledge what-so-ever on this topic. I am quickly reminded this is that teeter-totter moment on the tightrope with teens where a drop of knowledge released too soon and they go running. I quickly backpedal.

“Do you want to know who says that?” My magic card - ask for permission to share. It is a parental life-rope with teens, their buy-in.

Then I wait. Again, it was a slow process for me to learn this... the waiting part. My kids received many years of me asking and then quickly telling or sharing my perspective.

And I wait.

“Sure,” she says.

It’s not a word I encourage the use of in my home. To me, it lacks decisiveness and accountability. It’s not a no, but it most certainly is not a commitment. It reminds me of elementary school when a boy who liked me would pass the folded up piece of paper which I would open and read “Do you like me?” Then three boxes with yes, no, and maybe are listed.

Though “maybe” kept it fun, the proverbial dance of attraction, ambiguity in a good way, is not a yes and it is not a no.

Looking to influence my daughter to interact with more decisiveness, I say in return “ Oh, it's no big deal, let me know if you want to know.”

“Yes Mom, please tell me” she clarifies.

"Yoda. Do or do not, there is no try. Yoda"

She smiled. Our family enjoys everything Starwars. She goes onto explain how our very good family friend shared this with her and luckily she listened, the part about stopping to try. We dialogued about the quote. At one point she asked me for more understanding. My perspective included the ongoing struggle or resistance that is encouraged with 'try'. Once one reframes their perspective to 'do' many obstacles melt away, a momentum begins. I let her know if she is using willpower or force to keep on track with her desires, inevitably the effort proves exhausting. Typically, achievements are short-term.

A few days ago I wrote about me and surfing at sunrise. For 20 years I have been 'trying' which means for 20 years I have been thinking in the sure/maybe state, not a no but also not a yes.

This morning, in my 2021 inspired action to make it outdoors for sunrises when it calls to me, so far 4/4, I grabbed the guitar I got at the beginning of COVID and my thermos of tea. I headed for the pier.

I sat about halfway out on the pier where the boats are lowered into the water. At the time I arrived, this was the right angle to view the rising. There was enough time and chill to keep my guitar in its bag. I opted for several cups of tea. Eventually, I got the guitar out and did the little I know to do for a chunk of time. Should I be surprised all the awesome excuses I have as to why I am not able to play guitar have somehow not resulted in my ability to play? Wouldn't that be wonderful if our ability to justify why we aren't where we desire to be resulted in us getting closer? Newsflash - excuses don't get you there.

At one point a pier maintenance man stopped on his pier-approved vehicle and said "You look like a catalog shot. I have never seen anyone sit there before." He saw a woman, sitting in her beach chair, thermos and teacup steaming, playing the guitar while looking out at the sun and sea. I smiled, knowing that is where I was headed, it felt good.

My commitment to myself and my desires in 2021 is to let go of my 'try' and mindset-shift to 'do'. Though the appearance for others is negligible it means everything to commit fully to me, it will happen. For me, that includes career goals, languages, guitar, surfing, cooking, revisiting some old adventures, a deeper connection to a few dear friends I have allowed the business of life to displace, and time spent in new relationships, the ones that bring me joy.

In my health coaching practice, I support my clients in their desires to do. Are you ready to mindset-shift in one of the 12 key wellness areas of your life? There are three words to initiate a mindset-shift, contact me if you are curious.