If Nothing Changes, Nothing Changes

Only I can change my life ~ no one can do it for me.

Life is about change.  Without change, without variety, without some stress in Life, all will stultify and diminish.  Without change there can be no growth, and without growth and development all things will wither away and die.

I will not meddle with that which I cannot mend.  ~  Thomas Fuller

But, as the Serenity prayer tells us, there are some things that we cannot change, some things that have to be accepted, and the wise learn to know the difference.  I can think of a myriad of people, places, and things I cannot change.  In reality no one  can change another person, unless that other absolutely wants to change.  This is why it is mostly pointless trying to talk to most addicts in an effort to make them change their ways.  This is why many relationships, and many marriages, end in failure and recriminations. This is why there are wars.

A while ago I resolved to stop trying to change others and instead decided to work on myself to become a better person.  That is now my lifetime’s project, and it doesn’t always go smoothly.  Sometimes it doesn’t work at all.  Sometimes I make progress, and sometimes I go backwards a couple of steps or more ~ it’s like a man walking into a gale, sometimes he wins and sometimes the storm wins.  In the last few days I think the wind won more than I did.  In the last few days I went with the wind and my negative emotions, and that meant I really staggered in the wrong direction.  In other words I totally fucked-up, again.  For me, going with the flow is usually the wrong choice.

Life will do it’s best to deceive you.  You may get knocked down, but you must always get up again.  The mark of a really great boxer is not that he never gets knocked down.  A really great boxer can get knocked down, but he will always get up again.  And that’s up to and including Mohammed Ali in his all prime and pomp.

Our greatest weakness lies in giving up.  The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.’  ~  Thomas Edison

The English language is filled with wise sayings, allegories, parables, and proverbs.  As you would expect a lot are by Churchill; ‘To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often…’  Then from Scotland we have the allegory of Robert the Bruce and the spider, which gave us the saying; ‘If at first you don’t succeed, try, try, and try again…’  But we also have almost the converse of that saying…

Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.  ~  Albert Einstein.

The Goddess knows I have been there often enough ~ every time I took a drink I expected it to be different from the last time, and it never was.  But, somehow I usually got away with it.

Back in my illustrious career in banking I once went into a meeting on Madison Avenue with no ideas and nothing but blank pieces of paper in my briefcase.   I had got good and drunk in the Plaza the night before, so I both looked and felt far from my very my best.  But I stood up in front of the board of the world’s biggest advertising agency and tried just one more time.  I told them not what they wanted to hear, but what I wanted to make happen.  It worked.  The thing is I didn’t give up, and I didn’t try to change anything except myself.

After that almost debacle I resolved to make a big change by giving up banking for good.  It was the wrong change ~ I should have given up booze for good.  Back then I didn’t have enough serenity within me to even think about being sober for life.

Right now, today, all I try to do is be the best Jack Collier I can be, sober.  That is difficult enough for anyone.  I realise that life is difficult and painful.  I know that the causes of my problems and pain are my own cravings, lusts, and the blaming others for my faults.  I now know that I can’t change others and I can’t change what happens to me, but I can change what I do, and how I react to people places, and events.

I know that the warrior’s road to freedom from continual distress, pain, and suffering is through self-discipline in body, mind, spirit…  and that’s a hard road to walk in honour, honesty, and truth.  I try to always walk that road, and often I fail.  But, at least I try, and perhaps not one in ten men even do that.

The world and the sky is ours if we want it enough.


jack collier

14 responses

  1. The difficult part is recognizing when what you are trying to do has been the same thing over and over again. Sometimes, I think I’m trying something different when in fact I’m just trying the same thing just wrapped in a different package. It is baffling to see the same results over and over again not realizing I’m being fooled by the packaging. What I’m finding lately is the Universe has a way of forcing change if I don’t do it on my own. Sometimes the signs given by the Universe are so damn confusing until it finally slams the blasted sign down on top of my head! Time to find a different way but not sure what needs doing differently. Do you ever feel like you are on a treadmill you thought was going forward to only discover it wasn’t moving at all or it was in reverse? *so tired* I’m so grateful to you Jack for your posts. It lets me know I’m not the only one and it isn’t gender or age neutral. ❤ ❤ ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sometimes we have to stop fighting with the crocodiles, and get on with draining the swamp.
      ❤ ❤ ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Indeed it is our journey, our choices and ours to change anything. Never give up is the powerful message I take away!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Many of life’s failures are people who did not realise how close they were to success when they gave up. ❤ ❤ ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That is a powerful and important reminder I read from you today!


  3. This is so true, Jack. I am reminded of the Japanese proverb: Fall down 7 times, get up 8. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s a good proverb. Hugs and love to you. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Wow, this is a good piece. From all of your writings I can tell how much you’ve changed, in a good way. I’ve never met you but I can see and feel that you’ve got a kind heart, a great personality, and I absolutely agree with your statement, to never give up. Try and try again! I needed to hear this today, thank you for sharing this. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey, I’m so glad that I connected with you. Always, I write what my heart tells me is needed for today. ❤ ❤ ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you! Your posts are great, I’m happy I got connected with you too! ☺️

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Your inspiration is important. I can’t imagine how hard it is for you to keep struggling to be better. I see you as a good man, a man who thinks, and a man who cares. Those are traits I know are appreciated by more than myself! Bless you for being aware of who you are, for taking the time to grow, for not staying safe in a box or rut, and for being you. When you are too focused on the struggle, I feel you miss the greatness already there in front of the mirror.
    Hugs, my dear friend. xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m just a guy filled with flaws and insecurities, but I can lift my eyes to the far horizons and walk with courage towards the sun-lit upland meadows.
      Thank you Kris.
      Much love to you and yours.
      ❤ ❤ ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. One of the blogger poets I follow used this phrase. Dimples in the flaws. I see dimples in you. (do you HAVE dimples????) Bits of joy filled spots that shine and bring happiness.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Behind every dark cloud the sun still shines ❤ ❤ ❤


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