Persistent | We All Are | But We Don’t Realize Yet

By Oivas | Improving Your Life | 1 May 2021


Persistence | An Introduction

The issue with words like persistence, perseverance, commitment, and the likes is that most of us would have heard it in the most negative scenarios. And that sets us up to be a bit resistant to the terms. I say most since there is a blessed minority who understand the terms from the right perspective.

I am sure most of you are confused about what I have said so far. But let me ask you this – when was the first time you heard the term persistence with reference to you? Again, try to think of the earliest. If you got it and if you are like most, then most certainly it would be falling under the following two categories:

1. You were asked to be persistent in your effort by your teacher, coach, a parent, or someone in authority OR

2. You were chided for not being persistent

Am I right? Chances are I am. But some may find it difficult to go back to find the first instance. No problem. Here is another question for such readers. When I say persistence, what do you feel? Or what is your assessment of yourself on being persistent?

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If you feel great, then you are that blessed minority that I was referring to. However, most would feel dejection, disappointment, anger at self, sadness, and other negative emotions. What do these negative emotions signify? That we are not persistent and hence hate to hear the word in the assessment of ourselves.

But what we need to ask ourselves is if these are the right emotions to associate with persistence.

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Persistence And Emotional Drama | Words With Feelings

I stopped short of using the word “trauma” and hence replaced it with “drama”. If you are like 90-98% of the people, you believe that you are not persistent and you are, therefore, bad. But that is farthest from the truth. In a moment, we will see why. Before that, let me talk about the science behind words. Let’s start with a story some call myth while others believe to be true.

This is the story of a tribe on the Solomon Islands. The island has a strong green cover which also forms a source of wood/timber for the indigenous population. However, some trees are centuries old and therefore enormous in size. Breaking them down the traditional way would take days, if not months. But the indigenous population has found another way to get the trees down.

They gather in groups around the tree and start cursing it. This continues for a few days, and after that, they leave the tree alone. And lo and behold, the tree does wither away and die. And within days, it either breaks and falls or has become dry enough for the people to chop it off easily.

While some may have problems believing this, there is another simple experiment to try out at home. Take two potted plants, preferably of the same kind, and keep them away from each other. Ensure that you give the same amount of water, sunlight, and fertilizers. The only difference will be that you will speak lovingly with one plant and with utmost hatred and keep yelling at the other plant. Do it once a day and continue for a week. You will be surprised that the plant that was the recipient of your love grows steadily while the one at the receiving end of your hatred starts withering away. Remember, both are getting the same amount of water and sunlight. The only difference was your words; more importantly, words with feelings.

So, what do both the above examples tell us? It tells us that words have power and more so when said with feelings. And the power of words works on us as well. If you understood this, let’s get back to our word ***persistence***. Your response to the word depends on how you heard it the first time.

What do I mean? I mean, if you were chided or the person yelled at you that you were not persistent and hence not good at something, then chances are you attach a “negative connotation” to the word “persistence”. Not only that, every single time someone talks about persistence, you feel that that is exactly what you are not. And that is the problem with most.

I also said that you are not persistent is farthest from the truth. How do I say that? Let’s look at it too.

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I Am Not Persistent | A White Lie

Most of the human population believes that persistence and all positive traits are something God has reserved for a small percentage of the human population. It is an elixir that is not available for all.

But here is the truth. ***We are all persistent, but some of us are persistent on the wrong ideas.***

If I ask you whom you would call persistent? You may say:

- The one who exercises every day come what may

- The one who does his office work/studies sincerely, come what may

- Is always energetic towards getting a job done

- Never gives up

And so on and so forth. And these are the reasons why, according to us, some are persistent while some are not. But I would disagree. All of the others are persistent too. In what?

- In not exercising every day or exercising some times

- In not getting the office work/studies done every day

- In staying low on energy and slipping on getting the job done

- Find creative ways to give up

Does that make sense? As I said, we all are persistent. Few of us are persistent on the right things, while most of us are persistent on the wrong things. ***But doesn’t that give you a good feeling?*** You have realized that you are persistent too. Now you only have to be persistent on the right subject.

I am sure that is a better mindset than thinking that we were not persistent at all. Wouldn’t you agree? I am sure you would!

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Being Persistent | The Right Way

The question is, why do I need to be persistent the right way? Because, by choice, we are allowing ourselves to live a diminished and fruitless life. This fruitless life affects not only us but also our kids, our families, our neighbors, and our society. Don’t ever play down the impact we have on our society. We owe it to ourselves to be the greatest form of what we can be.

Besides, what is the fun in beating ourselves always when we hear the word “persistent” or “responsible”. Understand that we are already having these traits but only in the not-so-right places. We don’t need to change ourselves (which is more challenging) but just change the events where we consume time (which is easier). For example, you don’t have to keep thinking if you will be able to do the job. You just have to start doing the job. You don’t have to keep thinking that you are not good at exercising. You just have to start walking or jogging, or lifting weights. The idea is, once we change our perspective to something and we stay focused on it, it only takes us 21-days to form a habit of doing it.

In other words, after 21-days we would become persistent in our new way of life. That’s all it takes.

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Persistence | A 21-Day Journey

Now, we start with the advantage of knowing that we are persistent people. The focus is to shift this persistence on the right things. As I mentioned earlier, this is far easier to do. How? Let’s start with one of the ways which we will see in a moment.

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Before that, I suggest looking at areas that we want to improve upon rather than persistence itself as an area to be improved. Let's remember and make it clear in our heads that we are persistent already. We saw the examples in the previous sections. What we are trying to achieve here is to improve ourselves in areas that we feel we need improvement and continue improving. When we see improvement in those areas, we will also automatically realize that we are persistent. I hope you follow.

All that we need is persistence 😊 to go through it every day. Give it a shot for 21-days, and I am sure you would love it.

Here is one of the ways.

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Affirmations

You would have heard of affirmations, and I know it works. What you need to do is to bring some positive feelings to the affirmations. Don’t make it just words but some feelings too. Remember our story of the Solomon Islands? Not just words but feelings of hatred led to the downfall of great trees that stood for centuries. All you have to do is to associate positive feelings with your affirmations.

For example, if you feel that you are not productive in your work/studies, then frame an affirmation saying – “I am super productive in my work/studies,” and don’t just stop there. Say statements like “I am superman at work” or even associate feelings of how you would feel once you’ve completed an “x” number of tasks in a day. Associate all those feelings to your base affirmations. That should do the trick.

Also, frame the affirmations in positive. So, affirmations like “I am not wasting time” will not work. Your mind will be fixated on wasting time instead of being productive. So, use positive terms and associate positive feelings to the word.

Try it out and keep on with it.

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Where Does Persistence As A Trait Stand In Our Life?

One of the things that are common to all individuals is challenges in life. These come in different shapes and sizes, and the ones who can manage them are the ones that make it to the top. ***Challenges are like filters that allow the best to rise to the top while cause the rest to stay down.*** This is not to mean that the rest are lesser in any manner. It is just that the rest refuse to utilize all the traits that make the best. That’s the only difference. ***We all are born to be the best, but our upbringing and environment shape us to be part of the rest.*** In a way, that’s good news because all you have to do is get the not-so-useful learnings undone.

While we are on the topic of looking at the best and the rest, there are few defining traits of the best of the lot. They are dedicated, persevering, persistent, and many other things. For argument's sake, let’s look at these three traits.

Dedication – This trait largely defines people who take unabated actions to achieve their goals.

Perseverance – This trait is portrayed by people continuing actions despite the absence of success. They continue believing success is possible even though it is not visible yet.

Persistent – The visible trait is the ability of people to take action despite challenges and roadblocks in their path.

Fairly straightforward definition, if you ask me. But do you notice that a person cannot be dedicated or persevering without persistence? Can someone be dedicated and yet not persistent? In such a case, either the definition of dedication is wrong, or the person is not dedicated. Similarly, can a person be persevering without being persistent? Again, the same thing. Either the definition of perseverance is wrong, or the person is not the persevering kind.

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What does this tell us? It tells us that persistence is a base trait over which other traits like dedication and perseverance are built. If you are not persistent, then the chances are that you are not dedicated or persevering either. The converse is also true. If you are persistent, you will be dedicated and find a way to persevere. This, therefore, tells me that I need to keep focusing on being persistent in doing something right or good and keep going at it. I will end up developing the other positive traits as well.

Our discussion so far should tell you that persistence as a trait is the embodiment of success or at least the embodiment of the path to success.

Therefore, be persistent and be persistent to be the best. A very high probability that you will achieve it!!

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Persistence | The Base Trait

So, we have seen how persistence can be one of the main traits of successful people. Basis our discussion in earlier sections, we now know that every single one of us is persistent. The only problem is most of us are persistent over the wrong things. Should we be able to change our focus on the right things, our persistence can help us be a lot better human beings and successful ones at that!

That’s what we have to do. Get your persistent trait aligned in the right direction. Get going and get to the top of the world!!

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Image Courtesy:  Arztsamui @ Freedigitalphotos.net | Mohamed Hassan @ Pixabay | GraphicMama-Team @ Pixabay

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Oivas
Oivas

Crypto Enthusiast | Writer | Blogger | Author


Improving Your Life
Improving Your Life

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