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Six Ways to Practice The Art of Tenacity

Starting things was easy. Finishing was not. These are some things I learned along the way to be more persistent and avoid an early exit from the journey.

Tenacity to Success

“Let me tell you the secret that has led me to my goal. My strength lies solely in my tenacity.”

Louis Pasteur (1822-1895)

Louis Pasteur was a French biologist, microbiologist and chemist renowned for his discoveries of the principles of vaccination, microbial fermentation and pasteurization. When I think of tenacity, I think of Pasteur who required a huge amount of persistence and relentlessness in his research.

I need a bit of that.

One truth I know about me is I love to start things. My challenge is that I don’t have the tenacity to complete many of them. At first, I thought my abandoning projects in the middle of them was due to my strength of being a leaner which means I get bored very quickly.

As I thought about this a bit more, I realized boredom was not why I abandon projects. I just give up too soon if I don’t see immediate results. I don’t have the tenacity or persistence to stick to something. 

This is why I stopped doing my PhD, as I kept hearing one’s doctoral research paper would take five to seven years to complete. No way was I willing to be THAT tenacious!

I’ve decided to practice the art of tenacity. Here’s what I think will help me in that practice:

  1. Stay in touch with my ‘Why’ and the passion I feel for it. Be persistent in my purpose.
  2. Set clearer goals with timelines that are longer than I normally would schedule. This is setting the expectation I have for me.
  3. Surround myself with others who practice tenacity and can offer me their wisdom.
  4. Remind myself to leave the comfort zone I have of seeing fast results.
  5. Find an accountability buddy who is also working on a longer-term project.
  6. Adopt a sedulous attitude and take my own advice to “Feel the GULP and do it anyway.”

How do you stay in your game when you want to leave it?

Written by Pat Obuchowski

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