Today I had the privilege to observe several young people pushing hard to conquer their particular tasks at hand, only to come away feeling as if they failed. I think that we can all relate to pushing so hard to have a desired outcome and feeling disappointed when the outcome is other than what was desired. We feel deflated. Whether it was a boy missing what he perceived as an important shot in a basketball game, or a first year cheerleader feeling discouraged that she is not as good as the others, or the skater feeling the pressure to perform perfectly, it is not difficult to resonate with these familiar feelings. When you feel as if you are giving your all, trying your hardest and still not succeeding, it takes a toll on you and you begin to look at life through the glasses of despair. Let the truth be known. If you are truly trying your hardest, you cannot fail. Sure, the outcome may not have been as desired, but you persevered and learned lessons that will remain with you for years to come. You came away recognizing that there are battles in life that you must fight, knowing that you will win some and lose others. Be willing to persevere. Make a promise to yourself to always keep trying until you reach the place you wish to get to. Do not allow discouragement, disappointment or despair to rob you of the success that you deserve. Praise your continued efforts. They will pay off as long as you stay the course.