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Things that Work and Things that Fail

Posted December 26, 2012 in Advice Column, Boone

As we approach the end of another calendar year, I reflect on the Keep Boone County Beautiful happenings of 2012 and even those from years before.

The programs that work and work well, like the Dragoon River Romp, stand out in my mind.  There are even programs I find didn’t live up to my expectations. Does that mean they “failed?” When thinking of failure, ask yourself, “Is it really a failure if you learned something from it?” I am reminded of a list of sayings, “You’re not a failure if….” I’m not sure who ever gave me the list in the first place or where it started. It was probably one of those emails that was sent to everyone you knew. I’ve had this list for numerous years, and I’m sure it has been expanded some since it was sent to me.
• Failure doesn’t mean you are a failure; it means you have not succeeded.
• Failure doesn’t mean you accomplished nothing; it means you have learned something.
• Failure doesn’t mean that you have been a fool; it means you had a lot of faith.
• Failure doesn’t mean you’ve been disgraced; it means you were willing to try.
• Failure doesn’t mean you don’t have it; it means you have to do something in a different way.
• Failure doesn’t mean you are inferior; it means you are not perfect.
• Failure doesn’t mean you’ve wasted your life; it means you have a reason to start afresh.
• Failure doesn’t mean you should give up; it means you must try harder.
• Failure doesn’t mean you’ll never make it; it means it will take a little longer.

When we started Keep Boone County Beautiful back in 2001, we had no idea where we would go with it. We had an “action plan,” but who really knew if those plans would work? We have tried many programs, and while not a total failure, they didn’t end up being what we expected when we planned them.

Not every program works, but when they do you can really reap the benefits. What if we’d never taken on a new project in 2006 when we wanted to see if we could get people to come out and clean up garbage out of the river? There would still be 20-plus tons of garbage, tires and appliances in our beautiful river and on its banks.

Take a chance. Be a part of a program that saves or helps your natural resources. Who knows, you may learn something. At the very least you were willing to try, and that speaks volumes that your time wasn’t wasted.

Information provided by Lois A. Powers, Keep Boone County Beautiful coordinator.

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