"Hope" And "Try" And Nike
There are two good words that are damaging because they are practiced/used too much. The first word is "try" and the second is "hope." The truth is that neither of these has anything to do with where you and I live - in reality. While you definitely should have a "good attitude" you must realize that about the problems and difficulties of life, "either it happens, or it doesn't - either you do it, or you don't!" Problems are real, while "hope" and "try" are in our imagination and not real. As a corollary, it is wonderful to have a positive attitude and persevere, to meditate and be prayerful in your efforts to change. Always give and seldom ask to receive.
Both "try" and "hope" are like alcohol and only safe in small non-addictive doses. Stay determined and positive but the truth is: Either you do it or you don't; either you behaved correctly or you didn't; you either ate right or you didn't; you either exercised or you didn't; you smoked or you did not smoke.
Do not develop a bad attitude and stop caring one way or the other. Keep a good, positive attitude, look to improve, but stay focused in reality with the determination to do what you know you should, exercising adequately, drinking clean water, eating a high fiber/low fat low refined foods diet, not smoking - or at least do the very best that you can. Whatever you do, there is only reality. "Do" is in reality, "try" and "hope" are imaginary.
There are no excuses, explanations, relationship to happiness or tragedy that permit you to do what know you should not, or to believe that the world is different from what it is including all of its unfairness/unhappiness/hostilities or anything else you might "wish" or "hope" or "try" to change. It is the way it is, and you will or won't change things or yourself. Do what you can, but don't trick yourself into believing that "hoping" or "trying" has anything to do with what actually happens. Save miracles for your dreams and those who are ill. I "hope" you win a $1,000,000 - but either you do or you don't. Stay positive, but don't let your adult and reality-based mind wander off into your immature and unreal imagination.
Your freedom, and that may sound a strange word here, will be defined by your accepting these ideas. If you do not accept these ideas, then you will forever be subject to the moods and wishes of others outside of yourself or chance. The history of the human race has been to seek as much freedom as possible. It is important not to abuse this freedom by becoming confused and unhappy, basing your life and determinations on "hoping" or "trying." Do not try to be perfect, just do the best human and reasonable job. But, don't become confused by putting your thoughts and beliefs in the wrong place. Keep up the good work, keep a positive attitude, go for it, and obtain as much relief/support as you need, but like Nike, "Just Do It."
H. Robert Silverstein, MD