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Always Walk Forward

Colin Stuckert

“I am a slow walker, but I never walk back.” 

Abraham Lincoln

What I planned on writing about today was walking. So I went to the quotes area of goodreads.com and searched through quotes from the keyword “walking.”

Then I stumbled on this quote, which isn’t exactly about the benefits of walking. It’s about life and moving forward. It uses walking as a symbol for moving forward in life. 

Ok, I guess I’ll just go from here. (Make sure you start walking every day if you aren’t already.)

So what did Lincoln mean by this quote? Well, first of all, we need to understand a bit about Lincoln and the way he went about things.

The man had a steely resolve and kept moving forward no matter the setback. In fact, his path to becoming President was wrought with tragedy and failure.

Let’s look at a timeline of his professional career:

  • 1831 - Lost his job
  • 1832 - Defeated in run for Illinois State Legislature
  • 1833 - Failed in business
  • 1834 - Elected to Illinois State Legislature (success)
  • 1835 - Sweetheart died
  • 1836 - Nervous breakdown
  • 1838 - Defeated in run for Illinois House Speaker
  • 1843 - Defeated in run for nomination for U.S. Congress
  • 1846 - Elected to Congress (success)
  • 1848 - Lost re-nomination
  • 1849 - Rejected for land officer position
  • 1854 - Defeated in run for U.S. Senate
  • 1856 - Defeated in run for nomination for Vice President
  • 1858 - Again defeated in run for U.S. Senate
  • 1860 - Elected President (success)

That is 29 years of progress. Progress would be a tricky word in this case as this progress included 3 successes and 12 failures. It doesn’t look like “progress” at all now does it.

What did he do? He kept walking forward and never back.

Keep walking forward.