These calluses upon your hands are a love story, for they tell of the strength of your heart and how you worked so hard to make life good. (Angela Abraham)
Last week I spoke about gratitude. This week, I’m onto calluses. We know calluses to be the hard things that form at the point of friction in parts of the hands or feet that are often used. We know callused toes and fingers.
Today I want us to think about these calluses though not from an obvious physical standpoint. Do calluses form psychologically? I believe they do. I believe they form the same way that habits form. Through repeated behavior. Sometimes they can be painful but useful (think of the athletes and string musicians) and at other times, they can just be painful (a story for another day).
The story that you are about to read, is what I believe to be a perfect example of repeated actions that eventually bear fruit.
Thomas Edison (by Ruben Aster)
Edison was born in Ohio in 1847 and showed an early interest in science and technology. As a young man, he worked as a telegraph operator and began experimenting with electricity in his spare time. In 1876, he established his own laboratory in Menlo Park, New Jersey, where he and his team of assistants conducted numerous experiments and developed a number of important inventions.
One of Edison’s most famous and enduring inventions was the light bulb. At the time, most people used gas lamps or candles to light their homes and businesses, which were dangerous and inefficient. Edison set out to find a better way to light buildings, and after years of experimentation and failure, he finally developed a practical electric light bulb in 1879.
A key moment in the development of the electrical light bulb was the discovery of a suitable filament material. Edison and his team experimented with a wide range of materials, including bamboo, platinum, and carbonized thread, before finally settling on a filament made of carbonized cotton. This discovery was important because the filament had to be able to burn for a long time without breaking, and the carbonized cotton filament was able to do this.
Edison’s journey to invent the light bulb was a long and difficult one. He conducted thousands of experiments and made numerous prototypes before he found a successful design. He famously said in response to a question about his missteps
“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work. — Thomas Edison”
So what do calluses have to do with perseverance? Well, one is a consequence of another.
Your foot will not have calluses if you don’t walk.
Your fingers will not have calluses if you don’t put your hands to work.
If you are 100% without failure, you have not worked at nor tried anything.
Your attitude towards everything determines whether you move beyond the callus. Both physically and psychologically.