Perseverance… an excerpt from the soon to be released book:
Motivation for the World, One Word at a Time by Gary A. McAbee
Perseverance is one of those nebulous terms that mean different things for different people. The true definition is to go on in spite of opposition. Opposition can also mean delay: your dreams, vision, and goals are all being delayed, so how long will you persevere? I firmly believe that people misunderstand perseverance because they do not properly associate as something associated with timing. The most common theme that runs with the concept of perseverance is knowledge of when to give up versus understanding of when to hang in there. I guess we can say it is an awareness of what you consider your pain threshold. How much discouragement, opposition, and delay can you take mentally and physically? Simply put, only you know when enough is enough, except when you don’t know when enough is enough!
Boxers step into a ring with supreme confidence until they get hit. Then, they realize they are in a fight! If they are losing the fight, they know they have to do something to make a comeback, or at least hang in there until they can recover. But what happens when the hits keep coming? At some point, the question of perseverance shows up in one way or another. Can they achieve their victory when it seems so far away? Put yourself in this position. I am sure your thoughts would be about survival, fighting back, or accepting defeat. Only you know where you are in that thought-process as the hits keep coming. Sure, you think you would make the right decision, but how many times have we seen boxers knocked silly because they hung in there too long?
Perseverance is a learned behavior that you must quantify. In other words, we need to put some form of time-limit on our ability to persevere. This has nothing to do with actual time. Going back t the boxing analogy, our boxer friend does not say he will last until 2:32 of round 8. Instead, he might say I can only hold out for a few more hits provided I cannot make a comeback. He can’t put a specific time on giving up, because things may change. He might be able to land a punch and change the fight in an instant. By the way, so can you! Just when you think you can no longer persevere, it happens! You are back on your feet and your come back and road to victory has begun.
This is a direct result of you knowing when enough is enough, except when you don’t know. I cannot (and should not) tell you if and when to give-in because I do not know you! You are a complex being who possesses a unique set of talents and abilities. Your levels of perseverance are different than mine, regardless of the situation, current status, or our stations in life. Again, this is one of those simple concepts when you read it, yet it can be so challenging to put into practice in our daily routines. We must be able to create some universal guidelines for perseverance that could potentially lead to success.
I will let you in on a secret; I put something here on your road to success. This book was laid out with perseverance purposely placed in this spot. The reason for this is the ease in which people tend to give up. It is easier to give up instead of going forward, especially if going forward requires enduring some form of distress. This is why you must define your success by starting with your eventual victory in mind. From there, build faith, start to dream and develop your vision. The objective is to be so thoroughly invested in the previous steps, that perseverance will be easier and maybe even unnecessary. I cannot tell you when to persevere or how long to persevere. I can only tell you to follow the process in the midst of opposition as you build your definition of success!
Affirmation: I persevere so that I can overcome all challenges on the way to becoming more successful each day.
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