Do or Do Not - There is a Try

(Jesper) #1

I never understood “Do or Do not - There is no Try” - besides the Yoda Quote… obviously (And I do like Yoda ;-)) .

If it’s something I have never done or explored before… I’m TRYing. I’m TESTing. That’s one of the reasons I sometimes exchange the word “test” with Try, Consider, Explore…etc. Depending on the context’ position in the Cynefin model, we try a lot of things to learn from trying.

Is it something UK/US English language use thing not to use the word Try to much? Rather than saying “I will try to remember that” - I should say “I will remember that”. I’ll do that then

I’ve seen the Yoda quote with regards to motivation - a "just do it" kind of thing. Would it be better to go with Pippi and say “I have never tried that before, so I think I should definitely be able to do that

(Kristine) #2

Hi Jesper! That quote was my moto some time ago. The way how I understand it:
Do it with commitment or don’t do it at all. We do not need someone who is just trying and not really taking responsibility about the actions.

Does it make sense?


(Jesper) #3

Thank you @kristine. That is a good elaboration. I’m still puzzled by “just trying”, reading that trying new and going outside a comfort zone is not appreciated. But that’s just me ranting :wink:

“If You Judge a Fish by Its Ability to Climb a Tree, It Will Live Its Whole Life Believing that It is Stupid”

(Kristine) #4

I get it.
You understand “to try” as leaving comfort zone. Many other understand it as - it is ok if i will fail, I am not really doing this, just trying.

“I will do my best” vs “I will try to do my best”

Because of our discussion checked it in dictionary:


Learned a lot of new meanings! Thanks.

(Chris) #5

Yoda said that to Luke about “unlearning what you have learned”. It was about shifting his whole mental framework to give proper value to his training because he didn’t see that moving stones and raising his X-Wing out of the swamp were one and the same, and his certainty about defeat was blocking his progress. “Do or do not” means that there is only utility in success - this is an either/or proposition that doesn’t benefit from partial achievement from trying (“there is no try”).

Another way of looking at it is that it’s a movie scene trying to emulate a kung fu movie student/master relationship and the semantic juggle looks like the wisdom of reframing a problem through a mystical koan.

(mir saadat) #6

Hey Guys, New to forum.
Even I do not get this Quote when few months ago one of our clients used it in meeting, not sure was that a motivation or de-movtivation.

If there is no TRY, then none will do it.

Although, I believe that we should take full responsibility of the TRY we are going to do.
Not every person is self motivated, they need a push and a backup if something goes wrong. No one wants to leave the comfort zone until they are pushed.

(Mark ) #7

The “try” can be seen in different forms.

“I am going to try and do this to the best of my abilities” or another similar statement “I tried my best, but just missed the mark”

“I am going to try and do this, but I cannot promise good results”

These are just a few of the statements where you hear the word “Try” and are all valid. None are negative. None suggest that they are attempting to do something without passion or determination. They are simply stating a fact that in some cases, they are stepping outside their comfort zone, but where knowledge maybe lacking, they need to heed a warning that they may not be successful.

They are still Doing!

I see trying as a kind of practice.

“I think I’m going to try to play football” is as acceptable as “I think I’m going to play football”.

The try statement suggests that they may have never played football before and thus lack the knowledge if they can actually play it at all, let alone if they are any good at it. Once they have “tried”, they may not like it, or they may find they are not very good at it. They could decide to carry on practicing and just “do it”, but that doesn’t mean they will still be any good at it, dependant on who you compare their skills to.

So for me, trying something is letting others know you are stepping outside your comfort zone, you are going to give it your best shot and you are ultimately going to learn something new, simply by practicing.

I hope this makes as much sense as it did in my head! :smile:

(Kristine) #8

I asked Google where it comes. From Yoda!

“Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980) Quotes on IMDb:
Luke: All right, I’ll give it a try.
Yoda: No. Try not. Do… or do not. There is no try.”

(Peter) #9

In my opinion there is a language-specific “problem”. In German the word “try” means “ausprobieren”. That includes a huge amount of uncertainness. We will use for every kind of doing, that has to do with getting knowledge about functionality, risks, whatever, the word “testen”. It implies need purpose the get new information about the object you try to test. (<- quite ambiguous… ;-))
Im German language we have another problem: “testen” and “prüfen”. “test” and “check”. German standards are keen on “Prüfberichte” - “check reports”. But they mean “test reports”.

(Robert) #10

One of your clients used it in a meeting?


The Force is not strong in this one, I think.