No 9. Changing Lives through Dancing
By David Earl Woodbury
Friday, February 27, 2015
Never Give Up!
Being defeated is often only a temporary condition. Giving up is what
makes it permanent.– Marilyn vos Savant 1946-NA
There is a sense of exhilaration that comes from facing head-on the
hard truths and saying, “We will never give up. We will never
capitulate. It might take a long time, but we will find a way to
prevail.”– Jim Collins, from his book, Good to Great
Every strike brings me closer to the next home run.– Babe Ruth
I attribute my success to this: I never gave or took any excuse.– Florence Nightingale
The day after we signed our lease for the Arthur Murray Dance Center of Santa Monica,
I had 10 workmen in the studio at 8 AM the next morning.
The electricians were working in the back of the new studio. At 8:15 I was startled as Carlos came running up to the front yelling in Spanish and dripping wet from head to toe. I ran to the back and Carlos had cut through the building’s water main and the space was flooding!
We were all yelling and the men began pulling out ceiling tiles and looking for the cut off valves. We turned every valve we could find off and finally the water stopped. The back of our now ballroom was flooded, the walls were ruined, and carpet was damaged, and water was flowing into the building’s basement.
Being my mother’s son, I stopped everyone and paused. “Is everyone OK?” I asked.
They all said yes. The plumber began his assessment to fix the pipe. I said “Let’s thank God we are all OK and continue our work.”
That was in the first 15 minutes of the build out. In 33 days, we were done with paint, plumbing, electrical, flooring, music and furniture and we opened Arthur Murray in Santa Monica.
Did I give up? NO! Was I shaken, YES. Have I felt defeated at times? I think that with so much responsibility, we all feel defeated every once in a while. But I did find a way to prevail and make it happen.
Has the studio grown? Why YES! We are 100% better this year over our startup year. Has it been fast enough for me? I plead the 5th on that question.
This is my reality. I am accountable and not a victim. Everything in my life has led to this moment in time for me. The good, the bad. The challenges and the victories, all have made me the successful man that I am today. I do not have excuses, I have opportunities and open doors wherever I look. It seems that every day I enter the studio, something wonderful happens each day to make our studio even more fantastic than it already was. My great partners, our incredible staff, and our beautiful students.
Life is short. We are breathing; we have food, a place to sleep, faith, family, friends. We are all so blessed. No, I will not give up, today, tomorrow, or in the future.
Never give up, never give in. Be a lighthouse for those around you. Be the leader and mentor that others are looking for. Become a hero for someone who needs a boost and a friend to someone who needs guidance.
Never give up.