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It Does Not Matter How Slowly You Go So Long As You Don’t Stop

Meaning of the quote “it does not matter how slowly you go so long as you do not stop” and why it is important.

If you scroll through Pinterest to look for a motivational quote, you have probably come across this one:

It does not matter how slowly you go so long as you do not stop.
– Confucius

The inspirational quote emphasize the importance of patience and perseverance. It’s a great reminder that growth is not linear.

On the Internet, the quote is credited to Confucius. But did Confucius really say “it does not matter how slowly you go?”

It does not matter how slowly you go so long as you don't stop

The origin of “it does not matter how slowly you go”

In the history of literature, Confucius left a significant mark with his words of wisdom. And they continues to impact generations world-wide. They were put together in a book named The Analects.

Though the exact same words can’t be find in the book, there was a line that reflects the meaning of this quote. In the words of Confucius, he said If you are going to build a mountain, and you stop before adding the last basket of earth to it, you won’t have a mountain. (“譬如为山,未成一篑,止,吾止也.)”

The meaning of “it does not matter how slowly you go so long as you don’t stop”

In his original words, Confucius used a metaphor to emphasize the importance of perseverance. The mountain refers to the difficulties in life. And just like running a marathon, you can only complete the game by running across the finishing line, not stopping a few steps before it.

In short, don’t quit before it’s done. Tough through it however difficult the task it.

Letting go of perfectionism is another takeaway from this quote.

You can’t expect perfection right from the beginning. And experts in every field is once a beginner. If you look at your own journey with a growth mindset, you will be less critical about yourself. And you can put more of your attention on the tasks that you are trying to accomplish.

Thoughts on the quote

While this quote can cheer you up in bad days, we do need to look at it both ways. Sometimes the price of this “just do it and don’t quit” mindset can be huge.

What this quote doesn’t tell us is that sometimes, it’s also important to take a step back. Perseverance is a rare quality. But a wrong direction will take you nowhere, no matter how long you keep going.

So if you are not getting desirable results, don’t stop, don’t quit. But instead of blindly forging forward, why not take a break and see what you can improve?

Maybe you need a new skill. Or maybe some professional advice will help. The point is, you may get to where you want so much earlier if you make some adjustment to your approach. And then you can maximize your potential and achieve your goals.

What’s your thought on “it does not matter how slowly you go”?

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