The Growth Guide

Trying is Failing and Other Language Choices to Make

Published about 1 month ago • 5 min read

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Trying is Failing

Monday afternoon, I met with some great colleagues, talking about a special project we had to do.

When one of my colleagues was assigned certain tasks, she said I'll Try in response.

My spidey senses were triggered.

I knew what I had to write about this week.

You see, that's how this works. As I go through the week, I listen to what's happening. I think about things on my walks and come up with ideas that helped me on my journey. Ideas I think will help you, the readers.

So, it's Wednesday night, and I'm sitting at a keyboard while my wife says get the newsletter done so I can edit it, and I begin to write.

The Unit

This TV show was good.

I loved watching and learning.

The show only ran for four seasons, which was too bad. It was that enjoyable.

There was one conversation on the show that stuck out to me.

Sergeant Major Jonas Blane is on a camping trip with his daughter, Betsy, when she says I'll try.

He looks at her and says in his deep baritone voice Trying is Failing.

The moment he said it, I got chills up and down my spine because I was at a transition point in my life and needed to make changes.

I know.

You're thinking, what about Yoda

That awesome little green guy said Do or Do Not, There is no Try.

This started a shift in my life.

I started to put more thought and consideration into how I talk to myself.

What you say becomes what you do.

What you do determines who you become.

So, you know I have now eliminated try from my vocabulary, so what other changes have I made?

Well, here you go:

I Can't Do It

When you say, "I can't do it," you're right.

Instead, choose to say, "I'll Do It."

Commit to your success and to achieving your goals.

Strong leaders and successful people say "Yes" and then figure out how to do it.

It's Impossible

The only way to achieve the impossible is to believe It Is Possible.

Successful people set big, hairy, audacious goals and take consistent steps to achieve them.

They don't let others' definitions of what is possible get in the way of their dreams.

I Need More [Blank]

I need more time.

I need more money.

I need more experience.

None of this is true.

You need to start and believe in yourself.

I Will Do It Tomorrow

You will not do it tomorrow.

Tomorrow never comes for those who're waiting for it.

Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow is a mystery, and you only have today—this moment.

I Should…Need To…Have To...

When you tell yourself:

  • I should
  • I have to
  • I need to

You're dictating to yourself.

Nobody likes a dictator, even when the dictator is you.

Instead, use "choose."

  • I choose to read
  • I choose to listen
  • I choose to exercise
  • I Don't Have Enough Time

We all have the same time in the day.

Some people choose how to use it better.

They prioritize what they want to achieve and focus on those priorities.

They read instead of playing video games.

They exercise instead of watching Netflix.

I Can Do It Myself

When you tell others, "I can do it myself," you're saying, "I'm not a team player."

If you want to go fast, go alone.

If you want to go far, go together.

Whether you can do it alone or not isn't the key, it's how much better you'll be together.

I know

When you say "I know," you're assuming you have nothing to learn.

Strong leaders, and successful people, assume they "don't know."

Instead, they ask questions and approach life with a beginner's mindset, always open to learning and possibilities.

I Can't Change Who I Am

People who think they can't change won't change.

If you believe you have the power to change, you will.

A growth mindset is needed to be a solid leader and a successful person.

It is what it is, is Bullshit.

It's what you choose it to be.

So that's it this week, Team, subtle changes in your language are going to change how you behave and who you become !

Seattle, Fractional CFO and Dinner with Friends

We're headed to Seattle for the weekend for a hockey tournament. It's always nice to hit a tournament in Seattle, but two weeks in a row is a lot of driving!

We'll be at a hockey tournament and hope the boys have a blast.

When we're back in Vancouver, I'll talk with a few local real estate development shops about being a fractional CFO or doing special projects. Interesting times. More to come in the next few weeks.

Tuesday night, I'll do what we love. Dinner with friends. Colleagues who I've had the privilege of working with for the last 10 to 13 years.

TGG Podcast

In this week's episode of the Growth Guide Podcast, I talk about having a beginner's mindset.

Humility drives a beginner's mindset. It recognizes that we do not have the answers to everything.

Approach life with a beginner's mindset, always seeking to learn, question, and grow.

Here are some practical steps you can take to embrace the beginner’s mindset:

  • Be curious and ask questions
  • Embrace uncertainty and ambiguity
  • Learn from your mistakes and failures
  • Challenge your assumptions and beliefs
  • Seek guidance and feedback from experts
  • Be open to new experiences and learning things

To hear more on Having a Beginner's Mindset: Listen on Apple and Spotify or watch on YouTube:

video preview

Last Word 👋

I love hearing from readers and I'm always looking for your feedback.

How I'm doing with the Growth Guide. Is there anything you want to see more of or less? Which aspects of the Newsletter or Podcast do you like the most?

Hit reply, say hello, and let me know what you think of the newsletter.

I'd love to chat with you !

All my best,


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The Growth Guide

Clint Murphy

Welcome to the Growth Guide where I simplify psychology, success and money by sharing advice from millionaires, expert authors and my life to help you grow: Personally, Professionally and Financially. Join 26,000+ readers!

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