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Persistence: Guaranteed success!

Posted by happypizza on November 18, 2007


by Bob Proctor

If you were to choose just one part of your personality to develop that would virtually guarantee your success, I’d like to suggest that you place persistence at the top of your list.

Napoleon Hill, in his classic Think and Grow Rich felt so strongly about this subject, he devoted an entire chapter to it. Hill suggested, “There may be no heroic connotation to the word persistence but the quality is to your character what carbon is to steel.”

Think about it:

If you took a quick mental walk down memory lane and reviewed some of your accomplishments in the past–large and small–you would have to agree that persistence played an important role in your success.
Napoleon Hill studied many of the world’s most successful people. He pointed out the only quality he could find in Henry Ford, Thomas Edison or a host of other notable greats that he could not find in everyone else was persistence. What I found even more intriguing was the fact that Hill made comment of the fact that these individuals were often misunderstood to be ruthless or cold-blooded and that this misconception grew out of their habit of following through in all of their plans with persistence.

Milt Campbell is a good friend of mine. He and I have shared many hours together discussing the very topic of persistence. Milt was a Decathlete in the Olympic Games held in Helsinki, Finland in 1952. His goal was to capture gold for the US. Unfortunately, another fierce competitor who had taken home the gold four years previous in London wasn’t satisfied with one gold, Bob Mathias wanted two; Milt had to settle for silver. That did not deter Milt one bit. He had formed the habit of persistence and four years later in Melbourne, Australia, Milt won the gold medal, earning him the title of the greatest athlete in the world.

On numerous occasions Milt has said, “There were many guys in school who were far better athletes than me, but they quit.” I can recount story after story about individuals who overcame obstacles so great, but only did so because they dared persist. These individuals are no different than you and I.

Where does it begin?

Ultimately persistence becomes a way of life, but that is not where it begins. To develop the mental strength–persistence–you must first want something. You have to ‘Want’ something so much that it becomes a heated desire… a passion in your belly. You must fall in love with that idea. Yes, literally fall in love with the idea and magnetize yourself to every part of the idea. At that point, persistence will be virtually automatic.
Persistence is a subject I have studied all of my adult life and I can tell you one thing I know for certain: very few people ever, mentally or verbally, say to themselves… this is what I really want and I am prepared to give my life for it, and thus, they never develop the persistence to achieve it.

Persistence is a unique mental strength; a strength that is essential to combat the fierce power of the repeated rejections and numerous other obstacles that sit in waiting and are all part of winning in a fast-moving, ever-changing world.

It is generally believed that a lack of persistence is a consequence of a weak willpower. That is not true. A person could have a highly evolved willpower and still lack the persistence required to keep moving forward in life. In more cases than not, if a person lacks persistence, they do not have a goal that is worthy of them, a desirable goal that excites them to their very core.

Four Simple Steps:

In closing, let me give you four relatively simple steps that will help you to turn persistence into a habit. These steps can be followed by virtually anyone.

1. Have a clearly defined goal. The goal must be something you are emotionally involved with, something you want very much. (In the beginning, you may not even believe that you can accomplish it–the belief will come.)
2. Have a clearly established plan that you can begin working on immediately. (Your plan will very likely only cover the first and possibly the second stage of the journey to your goal. As you begin executing your plan, other steps required to complete your journey will be revealed at the right time.)
3. Make an irrevocable decision to reject any and all negative suggestions that come from friends, relatives or neighbors. Do not give any conscious attention to conditions or circumstances that appear to indicate the goal cannot be accomplished.
4. Establish a group of one or more people who will encourage, support and assist you wherever possible.
What do you dream of doing with your life? Do it. Begin right now and never quit. Be persistent.

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