Once upon a time, a tiny seed fell into the soil, an event that went unnoticed in the grand scheme of the world.
As days turned into weeks and weeks into months, the seed began its journey of transformation. It sprouted, grew, and eventually became a majestic tree.
This process did not happen overnight; it took countless sunrises and sunsets, periods of rain and drought, times of growth and times of stillness. This is the story of progress, a narrative that reminds us that sometimes, progress may seem invincible, while at other times, it might take just one more attempt to succeed.
In today’s fast-paced world, progress can sometimes feel like an invisible force, powerful and relentless, driving us forward even when we feel like we’re standing still.
We are constantly surrounded by examples of this seemingly invincible progress, be it in the realm of technology, medicine, or social reform. We see cars that drive themselves, surgeries conducted by robots, and movements that are changing the face of societies. It’s exciting, empowering, and sometimes a little bit overwhelming.
Take the story of Mark Zuckerberg, who turned a college dorm room project into one of the world’s largest social media platforms. When Facebook first launched, it was merely a way for Harvard students to connect. Today, it’s a global giant, facilitating connections, commerce, and more. This progress might seem invincible, but it wasn’t. It was a result of countless hours of work, numerous failures, and a consistent belief in the vision.
Yet, there’s another side to progress, one that is less talked about but just as important. It’s the progress that happens in small increments, the kind that’s often unseen and unrecognized, the kind that happens when we decide to try just one more time.
Consider the story of Thomas Edison. It’s said that he made 1,000 unsuccessful attempts at inventing the light bulb. When a reporter asked him how it felt to fail 1,000 times, Edison replied, “I didn’t fail 1,000 times. The light bulb was an invention with 1,000 steps.”
Each of those attempts, each of those failures, was a step towards progress. It was Edison deciding to try just one more time that led to one of the most transformative inventions in human history.
Or take the story of J.K. Rowling. She was a single mother living on welfare when she started writing the Harry Potter series. Her manuscript was rejected by 12 different publishers before it was finally accepted.
Each rejection was an opportunity for her to give up, to decide that maybe her dream of being a writer wasn’t meant to be. But she didn’t. She kept going, she kept writing, and she kept submitting her manuscript. It was her decision to try one more time that gave us one of the most beloved series of books in recent history.
What these stories teach us is that progress, whether invincible or incremental, requires a blend of resilience, determination, and a touch of audacity. It’s about believing in the potential of that tiny seed and providing it with the sunlight, water, and nutrients it needs to grow.
It’s about being okay with the times of stillness, recognizing that they’re just as much a part of the growth process as the times of rapid change. And most importantly, it’s about having the courage to try just one more time.
As we navigate our own journeys, it’s important to remember that progress is not always linear. It’s not always big leaps and bounds. Sometimes, it’s small steps and tiny victories. Sometimes, it’s not visible to the naked eye. And sometimes, all it takes is one more attempt.