No matter what my dad did, he did it well.
I don’t mean it did it perfectly. But he did his best. Even when he was being a goofball. Even when he told corny jokes. Even when he tried to imitate Chief Illiniwek’s toe touch.
He expected the same from me. I rarely felt it as pressure. He imagined (aloud) I could do just about anything I dreamed. I knew that wasn’t true, and I’m pretty sure he did, too, but his point was to let imagination expand possibilities instead of prematurely building a drop ceiling of reality. There would always be time to analyze and plan.
If I was going to commit to something, I needed to give it my all.
If I was going to spend time on something, I needed to use that time wisely.
It was okay with my dad (and my mom) if I was average or below average at something…unless more was within the realm of possibility for me if I was willing to give something my best.
The example and expectation (without pressure toward perfectionism) to do things well was a gift.
I hope to pass it along to others, because that’s what encouragement is about. Without spurring others to consider the possibilities, we too easily stymie them. And there’s enough discouragement available to everyone nowadays. Unless we’re willing to consider the impossible is possible, unless we’re willing to approach everything with hope and perseverance, we’ll miss out.
I’d rather try and get farther than I thought than stay where I am.