Martin C. Boire
June 22, 2023
One of the purposes of life is to get better at getting better.
Not to be better. Not to get better. To get better at getting better.
You need to understand that you are not required to make every decision correctly or to make no mistakes. The design is that you learn from your mistakes. And in learning from your mistakes, to then learn which principles should be governing your decisions. And in that process, you will become better, and more efficient at getting better, and not leave this world in the same poor condition in which you arrived.
My mother, Virginia Cheatham Boire, who died at an early age of 52, occasionally told my brother Stan and I, “you just don’t want to die a fool.” I found no image meaningfully conveying the point of this discourse and so used a photo of some who form a part of my story.
This process of continual improvement continues throughout your entire life, assuming you engage in it. So many are stuck in the mud and do not. “That’s how I do things.” “I do it my way.” “That’s just how I am.”
American author Henry David Thoreau expressed this thought in Chapter II of his novel Walden, in which he said he did not want to come to die and find he had not lived.
Doc Reynolds, my Scoutmaster back when scouting was something, was once sitting with my brother and I by a campfire late one night and told us one of the most important things he had ever learned in life was that when he saw someone doing something better than he did it, he took that and made it part of him. That was profoundly liberating because as a teenager trying to figure out who I was, it freed me from the young man’s insecure attitude that if your idea is threatened you are threatened. And knowing that made it easier for me to practice incorporating better practices and decision-making habits into myself. And the more I did so the easier it became to improve, instead of being a stick in the mud going through life saying things like “well that's how I do it.”
Here is hint of how to implement the process in one context: “What we want to do is succeed here, so let's go with her idea because it's a better idea than mine.” You both win, and so do those intended to benefit by that project you are all working on.
Now, some reading this will hear this message, but allow themselves to be lead away, enticed by promises of effortless happiness.
Some will hear and try, but when the going gets tough, will stop.
Others will hear and try, but become confused by life’s pleasures and riches and not mature.
But some will hear it, practice it, and become everything they were meant to be when they were put here.
Such is the opportunity of your life.
It will be what you make of it. And no one can do it for you.
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