The Thought for the Day/Louis L’Amour

Man must deal with himself. It is his reality he must face each morning when he rises. He must be, he must move, he must create.
Louis L’Amour
The Lonesome Gods

It’s been a while since we’ve heard from Louis L’Amour (1908-88) in this feature, but long-time readers know he shows up here regularly. Though the critic who said L’Amour might well have benefited from a freshman composition class had a point, L’Amour didn’t have a freshman composition class to attend. He led a wandering, sometimes hardscrabble life until he started selling books, and he was a completely self-taught writer.  Yes, this resulted in stories featuring characters depending on more luck – both good and bad – than a more classically trained writer might have, but it also resulted in writing that produces insights into our human experience that for our money are topped only by Gore Vidal.

It is his reality he must face each morning when he rises…

One of the few original sayings we’ve been able to muster over the years concerns how the biggest obstacle to our success usually looks us in the mirror every morning.

We must overcome ourselves. Literally or figuratively, we must look ourselves in the mirror every morning. Do we like what we see? Do we look ourselves squarely in the eye because we have a full day ahead of making our time serve us? Or, are we not entirely thrilled with what we see and avert our eyes? Do we look away because we do not like the reflection the mirror is showing us?

He must be, he must move, he must create.

If we do not like what we see, it’s easy to change it. Each one of us has the power to say, this is what I can become tomorrow. If we are going to be, we must move and we must create the us that we were meant to be.

We all have 24-hours every day, the only commodity each of us is issued in equal measure and those that get on in this life put those 24 hours to advantage. If we are not happy with what the mirror shows us, all we need is some insights into our talents and the life we were meant to live, some courage to go and live that life and some patience to see it through to the very end. When we do those things we will look forward to looking in the mirror every morning.

The Thought for the Day runs regularly. Gaylon began stockpiling quotes in 1988.

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