The Paradoxical Commandments- Reposted

I posted this in November 2008 when I was getting about 100 views a day. Thought I might go back to some good posts now that the number of views has increased. Thanks to Melanie Driscoll for reminding me.


Sorry to go all “philosophical” on you but, I think this is important. In a recent post related to youth sports and early specialization ( this time the specific topic was youth winter indoor football) one of my readers and frequent contributors Michelle Hart-Miller, a wonderful person and excellent coach, sounded almost despondent in her response .

“In this society I’m beginning to question making any effort at all.”

My response was to post The Paradoxical Commandments, a series of wonderful inspirational thoughts that have found there way around the world. On some of my worst days dealing with any problem I try to remember the concept of “Anyway”. The Paradoxical Commandments were written in 1968 by Kent Keith and are contained in a book called AnyWay

People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered.
Love them anyway.

If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives.
Do good anyway.

If you are successful, you will win false friends and true enemies.
Succeed anyway.

The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.

Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable.
Be honest and frank anyway.

The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds.
Think big anyway.

People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs.
Fight for a few underdogs anyway.

What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight.
Build anyway.

People really need help but may attack you if you do help them.
Help people anyway.

Give the world the best you have and you’ll get kicked in the teeth.
Give the world the best you have anyway.

I truly believe this is what keeps me coaching. One small victory can offset numerous losses.


8 Responses to “The Paradoxical Commandments- Reposted”

  1. […] The Paradoxical Commandments Reposted […]

  2. These quotes are friendly reminders to live by. I had fun reading each of them. These all boil down to one thing; Always have a positive attitude in any circumstances in life. After all we only got one life to ride so let’s make our journey worth travelling.

    Thanks for posting Michael. I am looking forward to reading your blogs.

    Rick Kaselj
    Exercises For Injuries

  3. Chris mattice Says:

    Since my first days reading this blog – this was the first post I copied AND HAVE RE-read on countless occasions and sent friends when they have felt this way. One of my favorite post of all time. Than you!

  4. […] truly believe this is what keeps me coaching. One small victory can offset numerous losses. –Michael Boyle Category: Motivation […]

  5. 🙂 🙂 🙂

  6. Gary Mathewson Says:


  7. Great post Coach! Reminds me of my favourite quotation of Marcus Aurelius:

    “When you wake up in the morning, tell yourself: The people I deal with today will be meddling, ungrateful, arrogant, dishonest, jealous, and surly. They are like this because they can’t tell good from evil. But I have seen the beauty or good and the ugliness of evil, and have recognized that the wrongdoer has a nature related to my own… and possessing a share of the divine. And so none of them can hurt me. No one can implicate me in ugliness. Nor can I feel angry at my relative, or hate him. We were born to work together like feet, hands, and eyes… To obstruct each other is unnatural. To feel anger at someone, to turn your back on him: these are obstructions.”

    If you haven’t read it, be sure to read Meditations. It’s full of nuggets of wisdom like the one’s in your post above.

    With optimism,


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