I can’t remember where I read this story. The author was reflecting back to childhood, to his or her piano lessons. The instructor spent roughly 50% of their time on the finale of a piece in preparation for a recital. When asked about this, the instructor said, “It doesn’t matter if you make mistakes during your performance. If you make the ending glorious, the audience will remember that.”
I compare that story to some oral presentations and speeches I gave in college and I can see where I went wrong. I spent most of my time learning and preparing the beginning. Same with some dramatic pieces I did working in theater. But with a strong opening and a weak ending, the result is usually a disappointed audience, an unimpressive argument or a failed debate.
I also think about that story when I hear people talking about “the good old days.” I think about that story when old friends get together and always talk about the same events over and over. I am amazed at the number of people that think that the best days of their life are already behind them. I am especially saddened when I hear those same complaints from kids just out of college.
I’ve also heard that my generation (Gen X) is the first generation of Americans that the majority do not believe that their children will enjoy a better standard of living than they did.
What happened? Why the defeated attitude in this country? I’ve heard it said, and repeated it often, that you don’t start getting old until your memories are greater than your dreams.
And we live in a society that despises the dreamers.
So, my message of the day is: It is not too late to make your ending glorious. To finish strong. To strive. To achieve. To dream. Make it your resolution; your mission; your most sacred promise; that you will make your ending glorious.
Looking at my life prior to publishing my first book, nobody would believe that I would be qualified to teach on success or personal growth. The reason I went forward anyway is simple: I know that my future is bigger than my past.
I’m in the process of ending gloriously. Every day I am improving my life in some way. When it’s all said and done, I know that I will have left something behind that will outlive me, and I will hear the words “Well done, good and faithful servant.”
Dare to dream of a great life. Dare to live a life of purpose and significance rather than eking out an existence day by day. Dare to expect excellence in yourself rather than just get by with mediocrity. Dare to rekindle the passion in your past dreams that you’ve given up on. Dare to pursue a new dream no matter what your age or what your present circumstances look like. Dare to conceive, believe, and achieve an ending that will be glorious.