Motivation to embrace a different path

 Today’s blogging prompt is “content that motivates you.” I have always tried to see life as a great adventure, despite all of the setbacks that I experienced along the way. I haven’t always succeeded. I’ve been overwhelmed at times. I didn’t understand that FAIL meant “first attempt in learning.” I thought that failure was forever and that it defined who I was. Back in April, when everything was shut down, I wrote about my struggles with self doubt and failure in a blog post titled: “Pennies from Heaven.”


Failure is not the end of the road. It is a detour. When you fail, you just need to take a different route. And you need to be motivated to get on that new path. But when you find the right words that motivate you to let go of the failure and embrace that different path, you’re well on your way to adventure. Here are some of the quotations that I’ve have motivated me to explore interesting and, sometimes, unusual places. 

“Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.” — Robert F. Kennedy

This is the Thomas Hardy house in Racine, Wisconsin. It was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. It was a prairie style house, built on a steep bluff overlooking Lake Michigan. It was supposed to be much bigger, according the the original design, but, by request of the owner, the house design was scaled back. Building a house on such a steep bluff could have resulted in dramatic failure, but, for Frank Lloyd Wright, it was a risk well worth taking.
I took this photograph in July 2008, while I was on the Witness Against War walk. Since then, the house has been completely restored.



“Life is a banquet, and most poor fools are starving to death.” –Patrick Dennis

This church is called “The Smallest Church in North America. It’s in Townsend, Georgia. It has enough seating for a congregation of twelve. I think that it’s quite cozy and attractive. It’s really going for the gusto to build such a tiny church and get a congregation for it. I saw that church during a September 2018 walk in coastal Georgia. 

“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I — I took the one less traveled by.” –Robert Frost

This is the Margaret Gallogley trail behind Assumption Cemetery in Grand Island, New York. It is a trip to the past, when all of Grand Island was forested. The land was purchased by the Western New York Land Conservancy, to be maintained in its wild state in perpetuity.


“Wilderness is not a luxury but necessity of the human spirit.” –Edward Abbey

The different path that I took included this creek in northern Illinois. I feel that I have truly chosen the road less traveled by. My feet have been sore, and my energy was not always there, but the adventure brought me joy and a sense of wonder at the beautiful places that I’ve been able to explore.



“Oh, the places you’ll go!” — Doctor Seuss

This is another Frank Lloyd Wright house, called Graycliff, located in Derby, New York, south of Buffalo. It was designed to be a summer home for Darwin and Isabelle Martin. Darwin Martin was an executive in the Larkin Soap Company. The couple spent most of the year in their home in Buffalo, also designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. Unfortunately, with the stock market crash and the Great Depression, the couple had to abandon the house in Buffalo. They returned regularly to Graycliff until 1943. It was sold several times. Both houses fell into disrepair and they were both restored and are now open for visitors.


“I believe that if one always looked at the skies, one would end up with wings.” –Gustave Flaubert




4 thoughts on “Motivation to embrace a different path”

  1. I really admire the way you look at life as an adventure! I usually say, "it's an adventure!" with the same tone I use for "it's an experiment!" and both times, I mean something like "who knows what will happen, and who would choose this lack of certainty if they didn't have to." 🙂

  2. Life is an adventure for me to Alice! I've always told my grands that when something doesn't turn out the way they except, it's not failure it's just a learning experience. Take the right path and the adver will continue.

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