Social Question

Shield_of_Achilles's avatar

Are these phrases truthful, or does effort really not pay off?

Asked by Shield_of_Achilles (1906points) January 28th, 2010

Reach for the stars, your life had no limits and you can be what you want
If you try hard, you can get what ever you want

I always thought it was a bunch of BS.
Who is right about this?

Edit: Note: This question was inspired by the song Trigger

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

33 Answers

jordy240's avatar

of course it’s bs. My parents also told me a fairy came and collected my teeth and left money under my pillow.

mowens's avatar

Anything is possible. It truly is. Brick walls that stop you from obtaining your goals aren’t meant to keep you out. They are there to keep the other people out, and are also meant to see how bad you truly want something.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

no, my parents told me to get married and become a doctor. it’s the same thing every Russian female immigrant child hears. I got married, divorced the guy they liked…married again someone I liked and didn’t become a doctor.

SeventhSense's avatar

Whatever you imagine will be what’s right.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@SeventhSense hah, after I read your comment I saw that NBC star shoot by…you know from the 90s when they did the whole ‘the more you learn…’

DominicX's avatar

I don’t necessarily recall those specific phrases, but my parents have always been supportive of me and indicated that I could do whatever I wanted, that there wasn’t something I “had” to do based on my gender or anything. Glad to have been raised that way. When I was little I always wanted to be a teacher and I’m still considering it as a possibility to this day.

As for the whole “you’ll achieve anything you set your mind to” thing, again, I don’t recall being told that specifically, but my parents never told me the opposite either. Let’s just say I got the vibe that they were optimistic about me.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

My dad would tell me things like this.He was right :)

DominicX's avatar

This reminds me of a quote of Homer Simpson to his children: “Well, kids, you tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is: never try.”

Shield_of_Achilles's avatar

Beer is the problem and solution to all of life’s problems

borderline_blonde's avatar

Yeah, my parents told me that I was capable of doing or being anything with my life. They’ve continued this attitude, but I think why it was so beneficial was that they’re also supportive of me no matter what I do, so long as I’m happy. It’s always made me feel good knowing that my parents genuinely believe in me and think I’m capable of doing anything I set my mind to.

Your_Majesty's avatar

They never told me about such thing. I realized what’s right and what’s best for myself.

Steve_A's avatar

I never got told anything like that, but my other grandma (passed on now) told me do what you want, and do what you like, clothes,music whatever it may be! something along those lines…

Truer words were spoken.

njnyjobs's avatar

One thing’s for sure, most parents only have their children’s well-being in mind.. . . so when they give out their life’s stories, it’s always best to listen, you’l never know when the information may come in handy.

Seek's avatar

My parents told me “Get your ass out of that chair, and your head out of that textbook, until you’re done with the housework and dinner is on the table. What, do you think you’re better than us? You’re not. You never will be.”

No, I don’t have attachment issues at all. ~

Cruiser's avatar

Both my parents hammered that into my thick skull and it did pay off. I believe in it 100% and hammer it into my kids thick skulls and they are doing very well thank you!

susanc's avatar

My parents said, “You’re going to boarding school. Goodbye.”
When I was in art school, my father said, “You couldn’t paint your way out of a corner.”
When I divorced my first husband, who had unilaterally decided never to get a job and never to have children, he said, “Don’t expect me to help you out; he was a perfectly good husband.”
When I fell in love later in life, my mother said, “Well, don’t marry him.”
When my two boys from this marriage called my mother from a day’s ride away on a very arduous motorcycle trip around the USA, she told them it wouldn’t be convenient for them to come by.
By the time my mother was dying of leukemia, I’d earned an foolish little MA in psychology. Suddenly she said, “My doctors don’t care about me, but you’re a professional, so they have to do what you say. It’s up to you to save my life.”

aprilsimnel's avatar

@susanc – I’m so sorry you went through that, but glad you persevered!

@Seek_Kohlinar- I feel you. We can look to @susanc‘s example how to get past such a thing. What our parents say and don’t say reflects their reality, not ours. Isn’t that great?

lonelydragon's avatar

No. It would’ve been nice to hear those things (untrue though they may be). Instead, I learned more from what my parents didn’t say about me…

life_after_2012's avatar

My parents never talked to me that way. they said things lik ” Damn it did you call your p.o ” and ” your school called ” . I love em to death for it too.

YARNLADY's avatar

No, those platitudes are designed to encourage people that those who try are the only ones that will succeed. They go way too far. My favorite one is “To find the target, shoot, and wherever the arrow lands, call that the target”. The point is that you must shoot to get anywhere.

susanc's avatar

@YARNLADY Will you be my new ma? that’s totally so wonderful. I’m going to raise me some new kids and teach them that from the get-go.

@aprilsimnel They said other things too. These are just some of the ones that were in direct contradiction to “You can do anything you set your mind to.”

aprilsimnel's avatar

@susanc – I got those mixed messages and contradictions as well. It was so confusing and upsetting at the time.

SeventhSense's avatar

Well with that attitude he’ll never get out of bed granny mcgrumpy. :P

Self_Consuming_Cannibal's avatar

Well, while it all sounds well and good, I could wish I was a dragon and it won’t happen. It’s something people say to give us hope and make us feel better, but in the end, hope is for people who are going to be let down.

SeventhSense's avatar

Lose hope and you lose life…
but with that screen name I guess you’re not reading any Norman Vincent Peale

Self_Consuming_Cannibal's avatar

It doesn’t hurt to fall when you’re already down, but if you get your hopes up and then fall…well, welcome to pain.

SeventhSense's avatar

These phrases came from the actual experience of people who manifested them in their lives.
Of course all of the phrases are true but it takes an individual to plug in to their own essence. They are not passive but secured through the personal manifestation of ones highest truth and often through great sacrifice. Anything worthy is from applied principles diligently applied. In other words hard work. But work with insight into ones own process and not simply striving. Yet even through fatalistic repetition we find what does and doesn’t work. .behind every great man is one who failed many more times than he succeeded.

Put down the violin and pick up another instrument. Just because we get hurt doesn’t mean we give up or lay down. Life is only found in the getting up. All else is just self absorption. We are all infinitely more capable than what we imagine.

Work like you don’t need the money, love like you’ve never been hurt, and dance like no one is watching.”
Satchel Paige

Self_Consuming_Cannibal's avatar

It’s not the violin I’m playing, it’s the fiddle. lol

But no seriously, which do you find worse:

Thinking something good is going to happen and then being disappointed


Already knowing something bad’s going to happen and being prepared for it?

Seek's avatar


There’s nothing wrong with being prepared for the worst, but living as though it’s already decided to happen is nothing more than a major bummer, and a waste of life.

If you’ve already decided on failure, you have no chance of success. I’d rather have disappointment sometimes, than to never have success.

Self_Consuming_Cannibal's avatar

I guess I’m really misrepresenting myself. I don’t feel sorry for myself and I haven’t decided that the worst will happen, just that it probably will.

I have just learned not to get my hopes up. It’s a lot easier to deal with disappointment if you think it’s going to happen as opposed to thinking it won’t happen and then it happening.

SeventhSense's avatar

Already knowing something bad’s going to happen and being prepared for it
As one with a distinct predilection towards pessimism I can say that the problem with this is it becomes a self fulfilling prophecy. It’s imbalanced and unfair to ones self. More honest is to say it may fail or it may succeed. Or there is something here I’m missing and the difference could be the difference between failure and success.
Finding our blind spots or our resistance is the challenge.

Answer this question




to answer.
Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther