The Manhattan Project--2016 A to Z Theme

Always a work in progress--welcome to my blog...

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Paired P-words

Persistent Patience
          I learned to juggle when I was ten years old.   For years I had watched my parents practice for hours as they polished up the juggling act that they regularly performed before audiences.  On summer nights after my father came home from his day job, they would practice their routine repeatedly until it was too dark too see and the lightning bugs emerged.  He was striving for perfection and he persisted, not always patiently, but with diligence.

           Eventually my younger sister learned to juggle and begin winning numerous talent contests with an acrobatic dance act that incorporated her juggling skills.   I was content to learn to play the violin and had no interest in becoming part of the juggling act.

            Then, when my cousins came to visit one summer, they learned to juggle.  That was the incentive I needed.   I did not want to feel left out.  I shut myself away in my parents' bedroom for hours and practiced until I too could juggle three lacrosse balls.  Patience was a necessity and persistence was the key to learning the juggling skill.  Soon I too was a juggler.

Praising People

          When I debuted my newly acquired juggling skill to my family they were all surprised that I had secretly learned to juggle on my own.  My father was thrilled and praised my accomplishment.  I felt proud about what I was now able to do.  He and I both knew that I was going to be integrated into the Juggling Jackson act.

           My dad could be a hard taskmaster because he was serious about the Juggling Jacksons becoming the best.   It made perfect sense.  We were paid to go before crowds that expected professional entertainment. We did not want to look foolish or give the act a bad name.   Like my parents had done when I was a young onlooker, now they and my sister and I practiced the new act repeatedly in our small living room in San Diego, California.   Praise of our achievements, promise of the opportunities to come, and a bit of strategic bribery pushed us onward to perfecting the act.

          A performer basks in the adulation of audience applause.  This became a main driving force for me from my first stage appearance.  This is the praise that a performer thrives on the most.  Of course, making money was another big encouragement.   Here I was just a kid and getting paid $25 per show--not too shabby in the early sixties.  And we'd always get rewarded after each show with a dinner at a fancy restaurant.  My father knew the value of providing incentives.

         The money, the incentives, the audience, and the positive words are all forms of praise.  Right now I'm practicing in my living room to hone my writing act.  Hopes of money and incentives are aspired, but for now it is you as my audience and your sweet words of praise that encourage me and keep me going.

           We all need this encouragement and it is likewise good for us to praise each other.  The compliments elicit smiles from our hearts and a sense of well-being with our inner selves.  If we must criticize, then it should be to instruct and help others to improve upon what they do.  Tearing others down doesn't help them or you.  Praising other people makes them look good, but it makes you look even better.

             Are you receiving encouragement through your blogging efforts?    How do you encourage other bloggers?    What have you accomplished in your life through persistent patience that has gained you praise?



  1. A wonderful example of perceverence and praise, I try to praise othere's writing especially those who have only a few followers.
    I myself have had much encouragement from fellow follwers yourself included, I did get praised when my book was published which to me was an achievement I worked hard to do.


  2. What a lot of sense you speak. I find fellow bloggers generally encouraging and welcoming and I try to reciprocate in like vein.

  3. Fascinating post, Arlee. I really feel like I'm getting to know you through these posts.

    I would say that though blogging can be a real time waster, it has been the one thing that has kept me going. I'm not the most patient of people and in the past I've given up on things too soon, but the support and encouragement of so many people keeps me motivated. I hope that in return I am doing the same for other writers.

    Ellie Garratt

  4. I've only been blogging a couple of months but I'm finding it very rewarding already. Getting comments on posts especially, even if it's just to say Hi, or to tell me I'm wrong, really makes a difference. It's nice to know someone's reading what you write, even if they don't agree with it.


  5. Yes indeed, blogging has given me the confidence to put forward some of my verse. The kind and helpful comments I have received have been a help and an encouragement.

  6. I've been trying to juggle on and off for a few years and I can almost do it now, thougb without Persistence and diligent Practice I'm hardly Proficient at it.
    My blog has its faithful followers, of which I am Pleased and Proud.:O)

  7. This is a lovely post, I found myself saying Yes, yes, yes and Yes! We all need encouragement, and to know we're being heard, even if it's just by one person. I hope I say words of encouragement, but I'm barely keeping my head above water at the moment, and not getting about as much as I'd like.

    I've received some feedback that has really encouraged me to complete the A-Z challenge, even though part of me wants to call it quits, but I'll see it out. Each post takes hours, checking for confidentiality, clarity etc - It sure is taking persistent patience! I only know I've got it right when someone comments meaningfully and thoughtfully.

    Sorry, didn't mean to get carried away, but it was good to share with someone who understands. Sue@traverselife(Workplace bullying)
    Thankyou for your encouragement, I really appreciate it.

  8. I've received a ton of encouragement! Everyone's been supportive, and I've tried to give back any way possible.

  9. Great post, Lee. Hard work, patience and persistency can lead to great results. Your artistic experience is an awesome example. And now, your challenge as a writer.

    Praising people is important. I have seen some of the new bloggers getting motivated and posting such interesting stories. The A-Z challenge has definitely been an amazing experience. In my case, I am so thankful as readers have been so supportive. There's a few of them encouraging me to publish my A-Z collection of stories. Isn't that nice?


  10. Great write & wise words:-) It's great to see comments on the things I blog, it helps keep me going. I have my own reasons for blogging but to have feedback that others like it just makes me look forward to doing it everyday. I also love to do that for others! Stop in & read P is for Purple

  11. So THAT explains the picture on the top of the your blog! Although, I'm quite sure I could've figured it out maybe not? I'm kinda dense).
    I am not blessed with that talent, although I have been accused of being a "one-ball juggler."
    By the way, thanks for the A-Z Challenge. It's been a great experience and, to quote a phrase, a challenge. Luckily, I've learned the beauty of the delayed post. In fact, I was able to post a week's worth of blogs in advance. But, now since I'm down to three, I need to get cracking so I can finish.

  12. The praise of a positive comment certainly does boost the spirits. :o) When I entered the world of blogging, I decided early on to leave only positive feedback. If I harshly disagree with a post, I feel it's better to leave no comment rather than a snarky one. So far, this strategy has worked well for me.

    And I'm so thankful for all the friends I've made in the blogging community. There's a wonderful group of people out there in Bloggerville. :o) Happy Tuesday!

  13. I am fascinated to learn that you are a juggler and violin is included in your musical talent. It makes me feel like I know the person behind this huge movement of wonderful community of people cherishing and praising people, better.

  14. What a fascinating life you have lived!

    Getting my Master Knitter's Certification taught me Patience, Persistence, and humility. When I quit assuming that I knew it all and was too important to do things their way, I did badly. When I took the time to learn what they wanted and do it their way, I produced vastly better work.

    I try to practice praise every day, and strive to be a consistent commenter. But I do tend to run on, don't I?

  15. Hi Lee, fantastic post, I feel like I know you a little better everytime I have a read :) I had the same experience learning to stilt-walk. I was terrified of heights, but needed to learn for a paid act, so gradually I overcame this, and learn to perform fire whilst on stilts. It took time!

    As for blogging, I know I'm only on my second month, but some of the comments and feedback have been the most valuable support that I have ever received, and I try to repay my debts taking time to read and comment all these wonderful people. I agree that any criticism should be constructively given, in order that the receiver can use it to perfect their craft, whatever that may be!

    Thanks for a great read and for your comments at Dodo and CLL!

  16. This writing blogging community is incredibly support and I have received tremendous encouragement from them. Persistence is one of my main characteristics, but not patience, unfortunately. I am extremely impatient. But I do stick with things that are important to me. It took me 10 years from start to finish to get my memoir published, including going back to school for four years to get a college degree.

  17. I think just by commenting and showing you're actually visiting someone's blog offers much encouragement. I love when I receive feedback and support. I try to do the same for everyone I've connected with via the A-Z. :)

  18. Encouragement is so important. I need it every day and try to give it as often as possible. Hey, you're almost to 1,000 followers. Congrats! in advance.

  19. Ah yes, patience. A quality that is a bit of catch 22, hmm? Like the prayer, "God, please give me patience, and give it to me right now!"

    Teehee ...

    Good selection and post for your "P" entry, Lee. :)

    Marvin D Wilson

  20. I have definitely been encouraged through my blogging efforts and I hope I have been able to pass some of that love on to others.

    Your A to Z Challenge has made that easier! Thanks Arlee.

  21. There is something truly positive about encouragement!

    We all like a pat on the back now and then, especially if we're facing something we're afraid we can't manage.

    It doesn't take much either - I am truly encouraged when I read the comments people have left on my blog and it has a knock-on effect as I then want to encourage others in their endevours!

    So, Arlee - thanks for this post today! :-)

  22. You are a wonderful example of persistent patience and a practically perfect (paired p's and no one is perfectly perfect but you set a high standard)...

    ANYway, I love to hear about your family and today's post was another reiteration of the importance of passing praise and being rewarded.

    THAT feels so good in itself and that's just the start...

    Thanks so much for a wonderful post, as always :)

  23. Hi Lee .. anyone who performs on the stage needs the patience of a saint, the perseverance of I know not what .. and the determination to keep going and succeed. Interesting to read more of your backstory and life ..

    The most important thing is receiving that acknowledgement that people enjoy the performance ..

    So as you and others have said .. the blogging fraternity is really good at encouraging and being supportive .. most definitely found that.

    Cheers - did some child juggling .. but only for fun!! Hilary

  24. Thank you all for your wonderful words of encouragement. I think we can all pretty much agree that this is what keeps us motivated to persist in our endeavors and in turn we should be returning that positive energy to others to keep the cycle of positivity going. Together we can achieve a heck of a lot more than we can all by our lonely selves.
    I encourage you all to keep doing what you're doing and always strive to do it better.


  25. And priase in public whenever possible.

  26. I sometimes wish I had the patience to learn to play the guitar. I know my husband would be thrilled to have someone to pick with daily. I've often thought of hiding away in secret and learning just to surprise him...
    The Golden Rule of Do Unto Others is so relevant in BlogWorld. I appreciate praise and encouragement and I give it whenever possible. It's funny how one simple comment can make your whole day!
    Keep juggling! This challenge has been such a great success!

  27. Here's another 'P' for you - Practice what you Preach - and you do! You are wonderfully supportive to all bloggers! I remember before the challenge began I emailed you and really didn't expect a response because you had so many followers, but you took the time to answer my email, visit my blog, and leave encouraging comments.

    I try very hard to follow your example by visiting blogs and leaving comments to encourage and support others. I appreciate every single supportive and encouraging comment I receive!


  28. Great post! I am so glad I stopped by today! Don't we all need some praise~

    I was going to do a "Pay it Forward"
    type of post, still will, but going to wait, till my anniversary next month!

  29. Really enjoyed your blog. I think it's great that you learned to juggle at such a young age. What a fun skill to have.

    Patience is vital as it's the antidote to anger. The more impatient a person is, the more unhappy they are.

    The great thing about the array of talented bloggers out there is that each 1 is unique. Each blog has a different look [thank you to the improved templates!] but I encounter so many different subjects & styles of writing. In turn, I respond instinctively & I try to add a bit of humor to the comment if the blog subject calls for it.

  30. I do receive encouragement through my blog. It's what kept me writing and moving forward. The friends I have made through my blog has been such a blessing and something so unexpected.

    It has been so long since I have had time to post since my decision to go back to school and become a full time student. This is my new goal that I will achieve through persistence. Maybe not so much patience, but definitely persistence.

    I completely forgot about the A-Z seeing as I signed on back in January. As soon as I realized it was going on, I posted for O yesterday and P for today. Better late than never.

    I love the story of how you came to be a juggler. It kind of makes me want to learn.

    Thank you for stopping by the other day. This is what reminded me of the challenge. Hopefully you'll come back. I know I will.

    Happy Writing.

  31. I always wanted to learn to juggle and had a friend that did it quite well. I just couldn't master it but likely didn't have the patience you did.
    And praise is certainly important in so many areas of our lives, a wonderful source of encouragement and affirmation!

    God's blessings to you Lee!

  32. I think you may be the first professional juggler I have ever known....
    Good story!

  33. Blogging hasn't enriched my life, the bloggers I meet along the way is what does it for me.

  34. I was also going to do patience as my work today; however, changed it to playlist instead.

    Thanks for looking.
    Laura T.

  35. Wow, what a family you grew up in.

    When I give encouragment, I usually try to say something specific, such as, "It is very impressive that you were so motivated that you taught yourself to juggle without anyone helping you," or, "I really find the pairing of 'persistent patience' meaningful and inspiring."

  36. L. Diane -- So true! Part of praise is letting others know about someone else's achievement.

    Rae -- Thank you! You are so right about that Blogging Golden Rule. It's something that I like to keep stressing.

    Brianna - Thank you for doing the great job that you are doing. I sometimes can't keep up with everything, but I do try to be as helpful as I can be.

    Ella -- Anytime's good for a "pay it forward" post and they should come with fair regularity to keep reminding us.

    Lisa M. -- You are so right about the connections between impatience and anger and unhappiness. One can easily lead to the other if we don't keep things in check. And yes the blog array is wondrous and eclectic.

    G -- There's always time to try to catch up in life and it's the effort and thoughts that count. Glad you're here with us and I plan to be back to your blog as well.

    Trudy-- Patience often is connected with motivation. If we really want to do something we are more apt not to lose patience.

    Andrew -- The funny thing is that though I made a living with juggling there are many more amateur jugglers much better than me. It comes down to who you know and the connections you have.

    Fredamans -- I think the act of blogging has helped me a lot, but if not for the other bloggers it would have been a rather empty exercise.

    Laura -- Would have loved to see your take on the topic, but playlist is interesting as well.

    Lucy -- You make such an important point. Just an ambiguous generic compliment is not as meaningful as something that directly pertains to what one has said. Being specific connects directly to the learning process as well.

  37. Hi Arlee,
    Sorry that I've been away so long, I'd like to say that I took a trip to Tuscany but I can't!
    I always imagined juggling to be difficult. And I think it's wonderful that your parents didn't force you. That is good parenting along with the great incentives. Yes $25.00 back then was great!
    I don't know how encouraging I am with my comments but I do try to stay positive. As my mother always taught me, if you have nothing nice to say than say nothing.
    I I guess teaching myself to crochet would be one of my accomplishments that has gained me much praise. I learned it all through reading.
    Love Di ♥

  38. Hey, Lee,

    Interesting story about the family "business."

    Now for bloggers. THE BEST COMMUNITY! Never have I been helped by strangers just for the pure pleasure of helping another human being.

    Most of my teen and adult life was centered around the fashion industry. YOU don't want to know how people in this industry conduct business. Let's just say, I grew up fast at sixteen and literally had to watch my back for sex crazed pervs.

    I entered this community just over two years ago and my soul has been nourished by the sweetness, caring, and talent of this community. In turn I do everything I can to help others on their quest.

    Thank God for all of us.

  39. I heard if you play with winners , you stand a good chance of becoming one yourself.The encouragement I recieve keeps me plugging away with all my blogger friends.

  40. I've had the good fortune of having positive people around me at the most intense times and been able to move forward because of this. Check out my N entry for negativity around you.

    Hello, Fellow A-Z Challenger
    Here's my latest entry, The Power and Profound Effects of Blogging, . Would love a visit and some comment love.

  41. Thought provoking post. We all can use encouragement at one time or another. Without that nudge from better writers, I might not have had the urge to continue to work towards publication. In turn, I try to help and encourage other writers in my critique group and on my writing network.

  42. loving the people i ammeeting through this challenge

  43. Praise is definitely so important - and positive feedback equally so. Thank you so much for organizing this A to Z Challenge - I've already met a ton of neat new bloggers and found lots of new thoughts to read (and we're barely more than halfway through). It's great to have feedback from new readers, and equally encouraging to find others out there walking the same path we are.

  44. I have to admit blogging has been so different than I thought it would be. I have got more praise and positive feedback from my fellow bloggers than I have from people IRL. It is their praise, support, and encouragement that is giving me the courage to put myself out there and to become a better writer and person.

  45. What a great post Arlee. It really strikes a chord.

    This A-Z challenge has been something else. All the support and encouragement has spurred me on...just to keep hanging in there.

    super stuff

  46. Positively profound.
    I'm very honoured to have a lot of positive interaction within the blogging community. It heartens me to know that it is not just one-way traffic and that my acknowledgement and support of others on their sites is kindly reciprocated on mine.
    I shall continue to encourage and support you, Lee. I'm sure you embrace the ideals of a blogging community where we celebrate the diversity. Indeed, all different, all equal.
    All the best and right on 'Q', I reckon that might just be the next letter in your 'alphabet challenge' :)
    With respect and good fun, your way, Gary.

  47. I'm persistent and need to improve my patience.

    Yes, I'm receiving encouragement through my blogging efforts. I encourage other bloggers by linking to them from my blog, interviewing bloggers of interest and commenting on posts that teach me something new, make me think about interesting subjects or offer a new perspective on something.

    Through persistent patience, I made a short movie that took me 2 years to finish due to casting issues. I wanted to give up on it so many times because I planned to have everything done in 1 month, not 2 years, you know, lol. However, I also wanted to be able to actually finish a project that I started, so that was the driving force that kept me going. This led to me winning my very first award at a film festival....I guess that would be the "praise" part. Maybe? I don't know.

    The Madlab Post

  48. This is a LOVELY post! It's true that praise and encouragement does a lot to motivate people to keep trying. I think it helps me keep writing when I lose sight of the dream of getting published.

  49. This is inspiring stuff, Lee. I know your comments have encouraged me with my own new-minted blogging efforts, and I've been inspired by them and others to try to do more about paying that forward.

    Persistence hasn't been a strong point with me, although I've got better over the years at recognizing what seemed to be working and not actively sabotaging it. My wife has been a huge part of that journey, and hopefully always will be. I've got a long way still to go...

  50. hi Lee:)

    excellent post. i think i'm finally coming out of my shell. met some more new friends and i'm enjoying it more this year. thank you for your sound advice.

    btw...if anybody gets a chance,
    stop by and wish Elaine a happy 29th birthday:)

  51. I encourage other bloggers by praising good work and sharing it with others.

  52. That's a really interesting story and it teaches a great point. I can see you do as you say, and that's a great thing!

  53. I enjoyed your story, you must have had an interesting childhood. As for praise from bloggers, when I started blogging I expected it to be like writing in a journal, but I made it public (mostly out of curiosity). Now I love getting feed back and encouragement, and I try to pass that on. The A-Z challenge was mostly to get me writing regularly but has turned into so much more.

  54. I try to leave encouraging comments on others' blogs, and I love receiving encouraging comments on mine! This wonderful community is so supportive, I feel blessed to be a part of it.

  55. It is really great to get to know you, how wonderful you have such a close net family !

    I try to encourage writers and give them a prompt everyday to hone our skills, doing them too !
    It is very nice to see what others do with the prompts.It brings much joy !

  56. Blogging, this A-Z Challenge and others leaving wonderful comments is definitely encouraging me forward and inspiring me to see how far I can go. I hope I encourage other bloggers by visiting their blogs and leaving comments too. I have not accomplished much in my life from persistent patience. Neither were strong virtues within me, and without receiving any positive encouragement from others for my attempts, my lack of self esteem took over and I just quit, giving up on myself and my visions.

    Thankfully I have been blessed by additional days to change this pattern. So now I am being patiently persistent in my blogging, my reaching out, my artwork and living my passion/purpose. The payoff has been pure happiness and joy like I have never experienced before. I have been able to meet new people, in the blogging world and in my own community, receiving positive encouragement and inspiration.

    What a wonderful post Lee. Many people, like me, have been unable to follow through for lack of patience, persistence or any encouragement. Great reminder of how important all of this is in order to meet goals.

  57. What a unique experience to perform with your family. I hope you write more about that.

    My blog is fairly new, but I've felt encouraged by some of my visitors. At this point, I've felt a positive vibe from people and that keeps me writing.

    The A to Z challenge has been helpful in finding new readers and I thank you for that! This is building a stronger blogging community :)

  58. Wow! and Wow again! So many meaty, wonderful, and kind comments! I didn't realize so many were accumulating while I was busy visiting other blogs.

    I just want to give all of you a huge thank you for your words of encouragement and praise. I feel so honored to have been visited by each of you and to have been able to read these thrilling comments. And I do mean thrilling! You all a great!


  59. Hi Lee. A refreshing post with a lovely story of the jugglers thrown in. I always admire people who can do this. I can manage it with 3 oranges ha ha. The blogosphere is a great place to both give and receive encouragement and praise.


    L'Aussie Travel A-Z Challenge Posts

  60. I love reading your blog! I may not always comment, but I have learned so much about you! I have never known a professional performer in juggling before. The closest I could say I have come to this achievement is twirling a baton and a flag in marching season. Your writing draws me in every time, so I am sure being rewarded with monetary means is not far off for you!

    I have received praise and support from yourself, and the friends I have previously...and then the wonderful people I have met with this challenge. I can only hope I provide the same for them!

  61. I give high praise for this entire experience! Everyone has been extremely supportive and there has been a strong sense of loyalty. Lee, you and the other hosts set the stage for this warm and inviting group of bloggers. Juggling has paved the way for your ability to make over 1200 participants feel like they're part of an intimate audience. Thanks for everything, Julie

  62. Praising others does indeed make you look better, and it also makes you feel better too. I used to be jealous of other people's accomplishments and would tear them down until one day I realised I was jealous because they were doing what I wanted to do and didn't have the courage to do myself, and they were doing it well. I decided if I wanted to be like them so badly, that I had to get to know them and the best way to do that was to praise their work. Now I'm doing the thing I was so jealous of and sometimes reap the praise of those honest and able enough to say they admire what I do. I'm still surprised when the 'friends' I've supported and who I thought would support me, ignore my work, and those I barely know step up to the plate and start building a friendship with me by telling me they admire what I do. Your blogging style is much to be admired, and if your juggling is anything like your writing you must put on quite a show!

  63. Denise -- The world of blogging is one of the best places I seen where one can find others to compliment and help and in turn put one's own work out there and receive a boost from those who read it. There's a lot of positive give and take here.

    Lydia -- Thank you for your uplifting comment. Baton and flag-twirling are both forms of juggling. Juggling is the manipulation of objects so it can encompass many things.

    Julie -- The A to Z Challenge is normal blogging kicked up to a higher power. I don't think many of us could do this all of the time, but it does provide a greater opportunity for giving and receiving praise.

    Alison -- You make a very important point that is true in so many cases. Envy is a negative emotion and can lead us to destructive behavior. When we are seen to be generous with our praise, encouragement, and helpfulness, we make a better reputation for ourselves. Great observation!



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