What is persistence, and why is it important to never give up? Tenacity or determination is really about our ability to maintain and pursue our goals, dreams and live our lives authentically. And for many people, the idea of whatever that simple dream is, whatever that goal is, a lot of us believe that’s unattainable. Part of the reason is the negative voices that are around us. So, for example, if you have somebody who is unsupportive, and your dream is to do something that they don’t feel you’re going to be able to do.
For example, I wanted to be a speech pathologist when I was getting ready to go to college. And my dad did not want me to go into that field. And he talked me out of going to school to do that because his concern was, I’d make no money at it. And at the time, the speech pathologist was making about $30,000. So this timing would have been in the mid-80s. And they all worked in hospitals.
My dad didn’t realize that, as baby boomers age, there were going to be many speech pathologists needed for stroke victims. And that’s the kind of work that I would have wanted to do. And those types of people ended up making $70,000 a year doing in the early 2000s, and not in hospital settings, actually private practices.
The most essential factor is persistence–the determination never to allow your energy or enthusiasm to be dampened by the discouragement that must inevitably come. ~ James Whitcomb Riley
Have a Passionate Vision
So when we give in to those negative voices, either outside of us or within, it keeps us from attaining our goals. So persistence is about being able to move forward with the dreams and the desires that you have. Sometimes it’s about passion. And if I were more passionate about being a speech pathologist, I probably would have just gone to school to do that.
But I was a good girl and did what my dad wanted me to do. So I went after a business degree, which ended up being a complete disaster because I’m not too fond of accounting or economics. And now I have minors in both because I switched my degree, two-and-a-half years into my college life. So I ended up with a Bachelor’s degree in Social Sciences.
So my persistence to get a college degree was my ability to adapt and switch things around and make that particular goal inevitable. I could do this even though I had negative voices telling me what I should do versus my passion for getting a college degree.
Your purpose in life is to find your purpose and give your whole heart and soul to it. ~ Gautama Buddha
Pivot and Adapt as Needed
So part of what helps you do that is to adapt to things. Change is always happening. Whether or not we like it, changes are a constant in life. And when we learn to adapt to what that change is, it makes it easier for us to pivot and keep pursuing our specific goals.
So another way to look at that is to understand that when some circumstances are such that how you thought things were going to end up different is by learning to accept what is. When we accept what is, instead of struggling against it, our fight against it keeps us from actually moving forward because now we’re resisting.
Resistance is a way for the ego to keep us stuck and not move us forward. So the moment we accept what is, whether we like what is or we don’t, but accepting what is happening now allows us to go ahead and say okay. This moment is what is currently happening. How do I go from here to where it is, I want to go? So we can see that next step because we are accepting what is.
The key of persistence opens all doors closed by resistance ~ John Di Lemme
Adjusting to Change
For example, when COVID happened, and my work life changed as everybody else’s did. I went from working 50 hours a week to not going into the office at all. And I was home, in my house for 40 days and 40 nights without going outside. And during that period, several things occurred.
I learned to pivot what I was focusing on. So I could start the podcast Soul Solutions. I could write more. I got ahead in how I was processing and recording the show to make it easier for what it was trying to accomplish.
When we realize that there’s a pivot to take, it’s not necessarily a bad thing. So although COVID globally was a bad thing, that time off allowed me to grow and expand and do something new. So I could adapt to situations and being able to take the next right action. And sometimes that next right action is very simplistic, by accepting what is and looking at the higher situation. And okay, what is the next step to move me towards my goal?
Permanence, perseverance, and persistence in spite of all obstacles, discouragement, and impossibilities: It is this that in all things distinguishes the strong soul from the weak. ~ Thomas Carlyle
When, if Ever Should We Surrender?
Surrendering occurs from a different aspect of giving up. So if your goal is to get a college degree, or your goal is to have a child, and circumstances are such that make that currently challenging to do. It’s not about giving up that dream. It’s not about changing. Alright, since I can’t get a college degree now, I’m going to try something else. Try an internship or something different.
Surrender is accepting what is because it moves us into asking what the next right action is? What is the next small step I can take towards obtaining the dream and the goal? So if you currently can’t get enrolled in college, then look at different opportunities. Look at various internships, different ways for you to grow, or take classes online. There are all kinds of courses online nowadays that you don’t necessarily need a college degree to move forward towards the ultimate goal.
On the other hand, if the definitive goal is a college degree, get your GPA up. Take courses so that you are better at writing, better at math, so that you can get into college more accessible. And then go step by step after those dreams that you want to obtain.
To persist with a goal, you must treasure the dream more than the costs of sacrifice to attain it. ~ Richelle E. Goodrich
Growth Mindset Allows for Persistence
The ability to pivot and accept what is so you can see the next right action comes from having a growth mindset. It enables you to set yourself up for success by having good habits and routines. Hence, we are open to receive the lessons we are to learn by the circumstances of our lives.
When we can adjust our trajectory as we move through life, we can stay on course to create our dreams. This persistence allows us to move forward with confidence, with the inner knowing that we are on track to achieve the goals we have for our lives.
P is for Persistence! Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Wishing will not; Talent will not; Genius will not; Education will not; Persistence is like a Genie that creates a magical force in your life. ~ Lucas Remmerswaal
As we become more conscious of the ability to adjust and pivot when needed, we can create our dreams with our persistence to stay on track.
Do you need support to help you become more persistent in your life? Do you want a strategy to help you overcome the ego’s limiting beliefs and live a successful life? If so, please reach out to me at TerriKozlowski.com, and we can put together an action plan for you to create the life you desire.