We judge ourselves by our intentions. We judge others on their actions.
One thing that I hear a lot of as an instructor is a lot of promises. I am usually polite enough not to laugh at someone who is very sincerely promising that they will study hard and do well on their work. Everyone feels like they can do more, if they study. Sadly “my heart was in the right place” isn’t particularly a good defense. After monitoring how much students actually work, versus the amount they report they work…. lets just say that I have developed an appreciation of hyperbole.
Good intentions are literally worth nothing.
If good intentions were all that were needed, then every aspiring student would turn out be a Nobel-Laureate. By the same token, every penitent abuser would never again lash out against a spouse, or any philandering politician would never philander again, or every addict would stay clean… but intent is not the same as action.
Anyone who has studied a bit of neuropsychology could back this up! The act of imagining an activity activates much of the same centers of the brain as real action does. It is no wonder that people tend to judge themselves based on their intent. As soon as a person starts to act on their intentions then any number of complications can get in the way, and that is a crucial difference. When distractions, minor obstacles, or actual crises will arise to distract this becomes the real test: whether a person will continue toward their goal or if they end up procrastinating. Procrastination is just a manifested conflict of interest in ourselves, whether it means that a person’s actual goal is different from what they stated, or if someone just doesn’t feel they are capable (or even worse, not deserving).
If you want a good self-esteem: do something.
Action is what is necessary. Don’t talk about doing something, do it. Do your soul-searching with your hands.
Incidentally, one of the phrases that just pisses me off is “communication is the key to good relationships.” This upsets me because people take it as a complete statement, as if there is nothing else. Communication is important, but commitment speaks louder than words. Communication may show you a direction, but putting in the time, sweat and tears is what really counts.
It’s the so called ‘normal’ guys who let you down. Sickos never scare me. At least they’re committed.
Ah well, at least I get to fail students who consider thinking about doing homework is just as good as actually doing it.
… and that is education.