Whatever you feel in your heart to do, try it, regardless of the outcome. Life is mostly about process, not results. The results may or may not come. That's not up to you. The process is. Entirely. And how much in life is? Trying is entirely, 100%, up to us.
Today, I heard some guy being interviewed on NPR. I listened for 20 minutes and never found out who was being interviewed. But one point he made is worth repeating. He tried what he loved, and with no expectation of success. He poured himself into it. He said that no one in his family had ever caught a break. They were poor and caught in low end jobs. No one had ever succeeded, financially, or in most other ways. But he couldn't help trying to do what his heart told him to do. And he succeeded, wildly. We can rise above our backgrounds. We can. We often do. And our parents, and grand parents, and their ancestors would most likely applaud us, if we're doing it right. But, ultimately, it's all about heart. Do you feel it in your heart? Do you feel like you have to do it? Then do it, regardless.
One of my old childhood friends is a song writer. Some people say he's the best song writer in the history of country music. He moved to Nashville at about age 20. He wrote songs like "The Gambler" and "Forever and Ever, Amen." Years later, I asked him what the competition was like when he got to Nashville. He said that, at the time, he didn't know, but that now, he realizes that about 3,000 song writers live there at any given point. I asked him how many make a living doing it. He said, less than 200. I then asked whether he knew the odds against him when he moved there. He said, "No. But it didn't matter. I had to do what I was doing. It was in my heart. I had no backup plan."
One of the greatest gifts of life is to do what you have to do, whether you think you'll be successful or not. Living who you are - that's the key. Responding to what's in your heart. And that's the secret to a great life.
In the photo today you see my old friend Don Schlitz with Mary Chapin Carpenter, doing what's in their hearts.