Sunday, January 28, 2007

Persistence and Determination

Those words have been playing in my head a lot lately. I have been thinking about how to get stronger at go and how to keep on studying and improving.

Let's trackback to when I was a little girl. My father worked as a manager, and his company always seemed to be very big into using motivational quotes. Once in a while, he would bring some home and give a lecture on it to us kids, which was in a way always interesting.

One of those times, he brought home a stenciled paper about persistence and determination.

Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence.

Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent.

Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.

Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts.

Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.

(Calvin Coolidge)

He sat me down and we talked about it. He explained to me the meaning of the word omnipotent. He told me the story of how he started out repairing type writers at a small company and somehow made his way up, during the days of the first computers, to a management position at IBM. He gave me a lot of examples where persistence and determination were very important.

For some reason, this has been a quote which has guided my life since then. I recently realized that the same is true in go. Yes, you can have talent, but you still need hard work and a sense of direction. There have been go players who were said not to have much talent, but persistence and determination made them into top players anyway.

It is interesting how something I learned as a little girl is still making a major impact on me. It is what keeps me doing go problems day after day. It is what makes me take a deep breath and review a game seriously, even if I feel like never looking at it again because of the stupid mistakes. It is what makes me sit down to seriously study a joseki, after I screw it up yet again.

My father has passed away, but his teachings still influence me. To show my persistence and determination, I'd better go and study some games now, instead of just blogging about it ^^


Maggie said...

Did you take those pictures yourself, they are sooo lovely. Plus what a great dad you had. Well I learnt about persistence and determination recently. I was constantly giving up in all that I did until I decided to learn how to swim 'butterfly'. You can read my story in my blog. THANKS FOR SHARING THAT EXPERIENCE. Miss Maggie

NannyOgg said...

Thank you.

Yes, I made those pictures myself, I love having spring bulbs in my garden and see the tulips and daffodils come up after all the snow.

Woohoo, butterfly stroke, good for you.