In the movie, The Empire Strikes Back, Yoda says to young Skywalker, “Do or do not. There is no try.” “Try” is such an odd word. It implies action without completion. The meaning lies somewhere between “I’ll give it some thought” and “I’ll give it my best effort.” Of course, “attempt” is only one of “try’s” many meanings. You can also “try” a legal case, “try” a new product, or “try” someone’s patience. No matter what the meaning, when you use the word “try” the outcome is in question.

That makes sense when the issue truly holds an element of doubt. Lawyers put forth their best arguments, but the final result is up to the jury. Consumers test a new brand to see if it meets their needs, ready to go back to the old stand-by if it doesn’t. Children see how far they can push their parents’ patience without suffering the consequences. But…when it comes to a accomplishing a goal or completing a project, simply attempting it isn’t enough.

Accomplishing a challenging task requires, expectation, intention and commitment. When you reach for the stars, do you EXPECT to get there or think, “it would be nice if I could?” Do you INTEND to realize your dreams or just hope they somehow come true? Do you fully COMMIT to your goals or are you prepared to give up if the going gets tough?

Anyone who has accomplished anything great has had the “can-do” attitude Yoda was teaching his frustrated young pupil. They didn’t “try” to hit the target they DID it! Along the way they may have tested many methods, but there was never a lack of commitment to the ultimate goal.

That’s what I think about every time I begin a new project. I am reminded once again that it’s actions, not attempts, that create results. It’s what I do, not what I try to do, that makes the difference. “Do or do not. There is no try.” That’s good advice whether you’re a Jedi Knight, the president of an international corporation or a freelance writer/voice over talent working from home.


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Bonnie Morét is an award-winning photographer recognized by The Georgia Council of the Arts as "an exceptional representation of contemporary Georgia art work." Her photography is featured on Georgia Public Broadcast's Georgia Traveler. Her exhibitions include Fifth Annual Exposure Awards at Musee du Louvre in Paris, France, Art Takes Miami at Scope Art during Art Basel Miami, Metro Montage XIII at the Marietta/Cobb Museum of Art, World of Water at the Georgia Aquarium, Open Walls at Black Box Gallery in Portland, Oregon, Wholly Georgia: A Look at the Effects of Southern Religious Culture, sponsored by the Art History League and Georgia State University, at Mint Gallery in Atlanta, Georgia, 6x6 at the Rochester Contemporary Arts Center in Rochester, New York, @Phonography: Dialogue in the Wireless Age, at 3 Ring Circus in New Orleans, Louisiana, and About Lands and Lives of the Civil War at the 6th Cavalry Museum in Ft. Oglethorpe, Georgia. Her photography appears in Modern Luxury/The Atlantan, Jezebel Magazine, and hangs in the executive offices at the Georgia State Capitol as part of the Art of Georgia exhibit. Corporate clients include Atlanta Ballet, Atlanta History Center, Chanel Cosmetics, Christian Dior Cosmetics, Sharp Mountain Vineyards, PM Realty Group, Granite Properties, Road Atlanta, Patrón Tequila, StubHub, CBM Records and The Washington Auto Show.