[[quoteright:203:[[ComicBook/XWingSeries http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Do_better.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:203:[-Yes sir, Captain Fel, sir. And when I defect to the New Republic, sir, and become one of its [[AcePilot best pilots]], I'll remember that.-] ]]

->''"No! Try not. Do, or do not. [[TropeNamer There is no try.]]"''
-->-- '''Yoda''', ''Franchise/StarWars: Film/TheEmpireStrikesBack''

It's more than a TrainingMontage -- this [[TrainingFromHell is hard work]]. The hero needs to get to a new level of ability, and fast. Thankfully, he has just the hard-nosed master to teach him. But the hero just isn't up to speed: He never quite lands that punch, his chi flow is too far off to channel that spell, and the master is thrashing him in the process.

Then the hero stops and the master gives a brief line that lights a fire in the hero: [[Film/TheMatrix "Stop trying to hit me and hit me!"]]/"If you aren't good enough, give up and stop wasting my time," and whoosh. He has it. He lands a blow, he casts the lightning bolt, etc. The master quips, "Beginner's luck," or "Not bad," and launches into another attack (usually demonstrating that the Hero still has some way to go). We cut out and the next time we see the Hero, he has mastered the technique.

An abbreviated and harsher version of a RousingSpeech, it is often accompanied by a reminder of what the Hero is fighting for, usually (but not always) framed in a way that insults either the Hero or the person/thing he is trying to save. This is done to get the Hero angry enough that he'll temporarily forget whatever mental hang-up is preventing him from getting this trick right.

There is some TruthInTelevision here; often the mental hang-up is self-doubt - if you don't believe you're capable of performing a given act, it's much less likely that you'll be able to do it. WhenYouSnatchThePebble...

This is also closely related to [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muscle_memory muscle memory]] and the CentipedesDilemma; many complex actions are dependent on subconscious rather than conscious action - putting too much concentration into some tasks actually makes them ''harder'' to perform; swimming, riding a bicycle, and of course martial arts.

The keystone of TrainingFromHell and TheSpartanWay. Related to HitMeDammit and sometimes DontThinkFeel.


[[folder:Anime And Manga]]
* Everything Ichigo does, ever, in ''Manga/{{Bleach}}''.

[[folder:Fan Works]]
* Defied in Chapter 8 of ''FanFic/ThisBites'':
-->'''Soundbite''': ''I'll…'''try…''''' ''(DeathGlare)'' '''Quote Yoda''' ''AND DIE.''

[[folder:Films -- Animated]]
* Used by Master Shifu in ''WesternAnimation/KungFuPanda'' when he finally figures out how to train Po. Makes sense, really, since he - at times - seems just a [[strike:gallon]] [[IncrediblyLamePun half-pint]] of green dye short of being Yoda.
* ''Disney/{{Mulan}}'' has the titular character taking her father's place in the army, and failing miserably in training. After Shang essentially tells her she's too weak to make it, she becomes determined enough to do what no one else could. Retrieving the arrow atop a pole while wearing heavy weights around her wrists, from there her abilities are shown to be better than everyone else in the army. This also seems to inspire the rest of the trainees into TakingALevelInBadass.

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* Silent Bob tries to quote this in ''Film/ChasingAmy'', but Jay punches him in the arm before he can complete it.
* ''Film/TheKarateKid1984'':
-->'''Miyagi''': Now, ready?
-->'''Daniel''': Yeah, I guess so.
-->'''Miyagi''': Daniel-san, must talk. Walk on road, hm? Walk left side, safe. Walk right side, safe. Walk middle, sooner or later, ''(makes squish gesture)'' get squish just like grape. Here, karate, same thing. Either you karate do "yes", or karate do "no". You karate do "guess so", ''(makes squish gesture)'' just like grape. Understand?
* In ''Film/KillBill Vol. 2'' Pai Mei tells Black Mamba, in response to her inability to punch through a thick board at close range, "It is the wood that should fear your hand, not the other way around! No wonder you can't do it; you acquiesce to defeat before you even begin."
* In ''Film/TheMatrix'', Morpheus's "Stop trying to hit me and hit me!" line he delivered while sparring with Neo.
* Yoda's force training of Luke in ''Film/TheEmpireStrikesBack". Oddly, this subverts the very trope it names, as Luke fails to rise to the occasion of using the Force to move his sunken X-wing out of a lake. This highlights the problem; Luke doesn't believe he can do it, and because he doesn't, he can't. He gives up until Yoda demonstrates how badass he is by raising the X-wing out of the water.
-->'''Luke''': ...I don't believe it!
-->'''Yoda''': And that is why you fail.

* The children's story of ''The Little Engine that Could'' also illustrates this mindset: "I think I can, I think I can, I think I can... I thought I could, I thought I could," etc.
** An expected subversion in a ''ComicStrip/TheFarSide'' cartoon, with The Little Engine looking the worse for wear, leaning against a building with a beggar's hat in front of him, and a sign reading "I thought I could, I thought I could..."
* Richard of the Literature/SwordOfTruth is restricted to this to prevent him from being a total GameBreaker.
* In ''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire'', Jon Snow tells Sam to be brave.
--> '''Jon:''' I can't command you to be brave, but I ''can'' command you to hide your fears. You said the words, Sam. Remember?
--> '''Sam:''' I... I'll try.
--> '''Jon:''' You won't try. You will obey.
* In ''Literature/HarryPotterAndThePrisonerOfAzkaban'', Harry repeatedly tries and fails to summon a corporeal Patronus. He only gains the ability to do so [[spoiler:due to a StableTimeLoop; the first time around, he witnesses what he believes to be his father protecting him from Dementors with a corporeal Patronus. When he re-experiences the moment, he realizes his father isn't going to show up to save him, but realizes he was/is there and therefore ''can''. Dumbledore points out that he has thus discovered an element of his father inside himself. And having done it once, he can do it ''whenever he wants'' - For the rest of the series, he thus has access to an ability that usually qualifies one as an ''Auror''.]]
* In a hilarious exchange in the original ''Literature/TheMysteriousBenedictSociety'' book, the crabby [[MeaningfulName Constance Contraire]] snaps this at George "Sticky" Washington when he uses his nervousness as an excuse for the fidgety gestures he makes that she mistakes for gestures that are supposed to indicate test answers in their cheating on the tests created by the BigBad of the series, Mr. Ledroptha Curtain.
-->'''Constance''': Every time you have a ''real'' itch, I get the wrong answer.
-->'''Sticky''': Sorry, I get itchy when I'm nervous. I'll try to do better.
-->'''Constance''': Don't just ''try''. ''Actually'' do better.
-->'''Sticky''': Hey, my fidgeting isn't the only problem, you know! It would help if you had practiced your Morse Code at ''all''!
-->'''Kate''': Now, children. Let's not quibble about who's to blame. Blaming is ''wrong''. The important thing is to get along with one another, so we may have better success ''cheating''.

[[folder:Live Action Television]]
* Averted in the final episode of season 1 of ''Series/{{Andromeda}}'' where Dylan demands of his XO Beka Valentine that 'All that matters in life is that you try, promise me you'll try.' as she confesses she isn't sure if she can make it to the overrun command center of the ship.
* Peter Petrelli's training in ''[[{{Series.Heroes}} Heroes]]''.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* Yuthura Ban of ''VideoGame/KnightsOfTheOldRepublic'' mentioned something that sounded like the dark side version of this; just another illustration of how Jedi and Sith are NotSoDifferent.

* In ''Webcomic/KillSixBillionDemons'', trying to use the power of a Key of Kings is doomed to fail: it takes a moment of absolute certainty. Effectively it involves bluffing the Universe into believing that it's wrong and your version of reality is correct, and the Universe has no patience for a BadLiar.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'': Toph's attitude to Aang whilst learning [[DishingOutDirt Earthbending]] is a definite "There is no try" attitude: "If you're not tough enough to stop the rock, then you could at least give it the pleasure of smooshing you instead of jumping out of the way like a jelly-boned wimp!!" This is because each of the bending discplines requires a particular quality in the bender, in this case stubborn, willful hard-headedness.
* From the ''{{WesternAnimation/Animaniacs}}'' episode "Taming of the Screwy".
-->'''Dr. Scratchansniff:''' Okay, I'll try.
-->'''Mr. Plotz:''' Trying is not good enough, Scratchansniff. '''DO IT!'''
* ''WesternAnimation/StarWarsRebels'': Examines the trope when Kanan tells Ezra "Do or do not, ThereIsNoTry!" and Ezra retorts that it makes no sense: "How can I ''do'' something if I don't ''try'' to do it?" Kanan admits he always had trouble with that one, too, but "Master Yoda sure used to say it a lot!" Later they come back to the mental hang-up explanation for the advice. Kanan will not ''try'' to teach Ezra the ways of the Jedi, he ''will'' teach Ezra the ways of the Jedi.
** It later gets a CallBack when Sabine must learn how to use [[spoiler:the darksaber]] and is hesitant for a number of reasons, one of which is that she doubts she can even wield it and only promises to try her hardest. Ezra's response is "Don't try, just learn.".