Passion develops Perseverance
Maya Angelou said, “You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it.”
Perseverance isn’t about sheer will; it is a teaching tool that helps us better understand who we are by showing us the things in which we are willing to fight and sacrifice to obtain or achieve. Perseverance speaks to your identity because it makes clear the things in life that are important to you. Perseverance is our building block.
Below is a list of the characteristics that I believe separate those who persevere and exhibit resolve from those who give into the fear of failure.
Action Steps for Perseverance:
- Engaging the moment – Living a life of perseverance is not simply saying, “C’est la vie.” It is not a mere acceptance of circumstance, but the application of experience. You should use your life lessons to help shape your ideology, morals, ethics, and how you take action in the world. Accepting the lessons of the past helps to overcome the fear of failure and allows you to concentrate on the here and now. While you should use this wisdom to experience the present, trusting in perseverance will also allow you to overcome the unpredictable roads ahead.
- Accepting change – C.S. Lewis is quoted as saying “to be in time, means to change.” It is a part of life. It is inevitable. From what I have observed of those who seem to exhibit strength in perseverance, it almost seems like change is welcome. Maybe they just have a better understanding that growth accompanies change. Maybe, from their point-of-view, living a life without challenges isn’t living at all. Whatever the reason, the people that I consider to be mentally tough are also the ones who are most willing to step out of their comfort zone. Coincidence? Absolutely not.
- Take responsibility – John Burroughs said, “A man can fail many times, but he isn’t a failure until he begins to blame somebody else.” Wow! I don’t need to add much more to that. Persevering means taking responsibility for your failures. Don’t shift the blame to others, but look for the ways in which you could have done better. Learn, grow, but at the same time learn to recognize when things were outside of your control and don’t beat yourself up over the things that you could not change.
- Learn from your mistakes – I believe the quote that “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results,” is attributed to Albert Einstein. While that’s obviously not the technical definition of insanity, the quote does ring with some truth. I think we all have that friend or acquaintance that just seems to keep screwing up in the same ways time and time again. That’s the exact opposite of perseverance! Persevering isn’t just pushing forward; it’s moving forward with accumulated and calculated wisdom. It’s digging through the trash of past mistakes and developing the treasure of your future!
- Never give up – Okay, so this is kind of an obvious aspect of perseverance, but I grew up in Raleigh, North Carolina where Jim Valvano’s “Don’t give up…don’t ever give up,” inspired many long before the V Foundation had the global recognition it has today. I think that it is important to remember that perseverance doesn’t just mean pushing forward after failure. Perseverance also means pushing through adversity. Be tenacious. Obstacles threaten most successes and the great achievements in this life are great because of what was overcome to claim triumph. Push forward, keep your head up, and never, ever give up. Galatians 6:9 tells us, “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”
The Journey Principles book offers a practical life-changing approach to healing, awareness, and restoration through your own personal journey.
In your service,