“Better nouveau than never.”
The person behind this quote is allegedly no one other than Groucho Marx. The famous comical genius that delighted television and radio audiences for the 1st half of the 20th century had a unique way of compressing millennia of human wisdom into a simple phrase.
If you have ever questioned the meaning of this simple but cheeky play on words, you are not alone. Today, we take a closer look at how this quote applies to this day and age, and how you can use it as a mantra to build confidence and escape your comfort zone.
What did Groucho mean to say?
Groucho Marx was a multi-talented artist that looked for innovation in every aspect of his professions like writer, actor, and comedian. Through his adventurous spirit, he pushed the boundaries of large-public entertainment and tested the waters for entire generations of artists and entertainers that followed him.
This play-on-words groups together the French word for “new” (nouveau) with the old saying “Better late than never,” which many people use to boost their courage when taking a step into the unknown and finding out where their limits stand.
Every time you attempt to do something that takes you out of your comfort zone, you bring something new into your life. You may be applying for a new job, trying to conquer your romantic interest or simply trying to score from a difficult position in a sports game.
Whether your attempt is successful or a complete failure, it still brings something “nouveau” into your life. The experiment brings you experience. It teaches you something new about your limits, your potential, and your skills. It shows you which skills you need to improve, and how far you have progressed until now.
How to add more “nouveau” to your life
It is never too late to bring “nouveau” into various areas of your late. You should never shy away from the opportunity of finding out who you are and what you can achieve with a simple step out of your comfort zone.
Everybody has their curiosities about how their lives would be like if they tried a new profession, learned a new skill, studied a new language or asked that cute barista out.
Without the courage to act upon your desire, your object or subject of interest becomes a fantasy. The fear of failure builds overwhelming mental barriers that strengthen with the passing years until you rule out your chances of success completely.
Instead of succumbing to desperation, you should remind yourself that “nouveau” is and will always be better than never.
Buck up and apply for a new job. You may find your true vocation or discover that you are not built for it.
Try learning a new skill, one that you have always dreamt of mastering. It may open the doors to a hidden talent or show your limitations.
Go ahead and ask that barista out. You may discover the love of your life or that you are completely incompatible and that you were barely having a fleeting crush.
This quote from Groucho Marx is good life advice that you should try following in almost every aspect of your existence to try and obtain a positive result. After all, it comes from a man that tried his luck at a “nouveau” marriage three times throughout his life.