Doing the show was like painting the George Washington Bridge. As soon as you finished one end, you started right in on the other.

Doing the show was like painting the George Washington Bridge. As soon as you finished one end, you started right in on the other.Jack Paar

Yes, it's easy to have a positive attitude at the beach on a sunny day. But can you keep that same attitude on the rainy days, too?

What does that mean?
This quote is from the early days of The Tonight Show (then called “Tonight, starring Jack Parr”), which was then based in Studio 6B, in the RCA building, New York City. At that time, the show had a run time of one hundred and five minutes, or one hour and forty five minutes. That is a lot of time to fill, and a lot of material to prepare for each and every show.

The bridge in the quote, the Washington Bridge, connects Manhattan and The Bronx, and is of a steel arch construction. All that steel must be covered in paint, or risk falling victim to it’s nemisis, rust. Over 500 linear feet of bridge span, plus two large arches, as well as all the bracing, required constant maintenance, meaning painting pretty much non-stop.

Jack was comparing working on his show tot he non-stop effort required to maintain the bridge. That incredible work load is a big part of why the next two hosts reduced the length of the show to it’s present one hour format.

Why are perseverance and attitude important?  
While everyone reaches the end of their run eventually, putting in the effort to make a great product is a worthy goal. While Jack (actually the second official full-time host (see the Bio for all the twists in the evolution of the show), and only put in a five short years before burning out, each of the next two hosts have been in it for the long haul.

As was alluded to in the prior paragraph, the trick is to avoid burning out, to become so fatigued that you just don’t care anymore. You can imagine how unpleasant that must feel. There are techniques for that, but perseverance and attitude are chief among them.

Your life could be viewed as a never-ending slog, as you finish one day, you just get started on the next. Some people feel that way. As you might be able to guess, they’re not the happiest people in the world.

Where can I apply this in my life?
Perseverance counts for a lot. But you can make it easier on yourself if you keep a good attitude at all times (or as close to all the time as you can manage).

Why is attitude an important part of perseverance? Most of us can only hold on for so long before we just gee pounded senseless. However, if our attitude is helpful, we can endure much more than would otherwise be endurable by ordinary people.

Look at any tough circumstance shared by a large number of people. Prison camps, POW camps, famines, floods, all these things have been known to break some otherwise sturdy people. At the same time, people you wouldn’t think could last not only survive, but thrive. This is primarily due to attitude.

Those who look on each new day with a pessimistic attitude, they are going to see it as just another set of trials and tribulations, and gloomily slog forward into their dull, boring, and mind-numbing future. These people tend to have the hardest time persevering when the times are hardest.

Those who put some effort into seeing the bright side, and keeping a positive attitude are typically the best equipped, mentally and spiritually at least, to survive hard times. Which group of people would you rather be around if things were going poorly in your area?

Which camp is more your style? If you’re like me, on some topics you’re more one than the other, and reversed in other places. The question to answer is how to maximize the time you spend with a good attitude and how to minimize the time you spend having a poor attitude.

Grab some paper and write down a few of the times you’ve been caught by a poor attitude, then do the same for a few the times you’ve managed to catch a really positive attitude, despite trying times. Do you see a pattern in either the situations or why you chose a positive or poor attitude?

Take a moment and brainstorm through the ideas and see what you can come up with for methods that emphasize what you already do well, and what you can do to minimize what doesn’t get the desired results. Hopefully that will give you something with which you can begin your experimenting.

Examine the results, and adjust. For the rest of your life. You can look at that with a poor attitude, and consider it a terrible burden, or you can look at it as a ladder to a better and happier future for you. In either case, you are right. And in either case, you will be an example for others to follow or avoid.

I intend to persevere. For the rest of my life. How about you?

From: Twitter, @larryweidel
confirmed at :
Photo by Public Domain Photos

Happy Birthday, Jack Parr. Born on 01 May 1918.

About philosiblog

I am a thinker, who is spending some time examining those short twitter quotes in greater detail on my blog.
This entry was posted in attitude, flexibility, improve, perseverance, setting an example, time and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s