If I could give in a single word the missing ingredient that people seem to lack in their pursuit of excellence, or in reaching their goals or avoiding discouragement, it would be perseverance. To define perseverance in its most generic term, it would be described as the ability to ‘keep on keeping on.’ Most people have no idea as to how critical these words are to your success.
How do you continue doing the things that you have committed yourself to doing, when it seems to be no fruit production from your labor? How do you continue doing something when you no longer like doing it?
This matter of perseverance is so critical to life that above all human traits, the perseverance characteristic should be built into the psyche and life of every child. The Greek word for perseverance literally means “staying power”. The ability to remain focused under the pressure is the key while traveling on the road of success. If success is a journey than perseverance is the vehicle used. While you are traveling on any road, there will be some bumps (disappointments) and potholes (obstacles) in the road that you must learn to avoid.
It is easy to start the race with exuberance, but it is not so easy to finish. Every marriage starts with the blissful thought of a couple being together forever, but today approximately 60 percent of them end up in Divorce Court. Every dreamer starts off with the idea that their business concept is the best on the market and that they are going to be on the fast-track to sell tons of their products, only to discover that they produced a ton, but only sold a few. If you think that life is a sprinters paradise, you are sadly mistaken. Life is a marathon; therefore, it should never be viewed as a 100-yard dash.
What happens with a marriage that ended in divorce? This question is easy; rather than preparing for 40 or even 60 years, which takes work, they thought that the marriage would take care of itself and so they made no preparations at all. This is why we have such great starters out from the gates, but very few ever make it to the finish line. They end up making some lame excuse so that they do not look bad in the eyes of their contemporaries. However, what does it matter what other people think when you yourself realize that you didn’t fail because you did not have the right stuff, you failed because you quit.
The opposite of perseverance is giving up. I personally know what it feels like to be in a dark place in life as if you are in a dark tunnel and that you have been traveling for days with no light in sight. It can be hard to concentrate when the darkness literally impedes your view. However, making the conscious decision to move forward is a matter of knowing what you want and how bad you want it. When you are faced with turbulent times is when your faith is tested, your resilience is stretched, and your toughness is brought into question. I know, I know…no one likes to be in this station in life, however, life goes on. What each person has to decide in a situation that seems to have no visible options is does the dream go on, does the marriage go on, or does the business go on.
If ten percent of the population controls wealth, then ninety percent might be scrubbing the bottom of the barrel. Most start up businesses, especially restaurants, fail with its first year, while others may have a window of two to four years. Why? Good question. To be willing to survive tough times, you have to be willing to learn. Learning is fundamental! You can learn a lot by what you go through, but you can learn a lot more by listening to others who outlasted the tough times you are presently experiencing.
Get inspired! Get turned on! Never, never quit because you will never get to see what the end will actually look like. Your dream is worth the fight, and so is your life. Hold on and keep on keeping on.
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