Issue No. 30
I. Why Important
II. Perseverance and Its Applications
III. Developing Perseverance
Perseverance is persistence in the pursuit of an end or in an enterprise undertaken in spite of difficulties, opposition or discouragement. It means being able to handle one's reaction to difficulties, and not get carried away by such emotions or reactions:
1. Clarify Your Values
Without knowing what is truly important to you, it is almost impossible to be truly persevering. One must have a strong reason for keeping on a chosen path. That reason must be important enough to override less important factors that cause discouragement.
Make sure that what you are aiming for is grounded on solid foundations. An objective that is not ethical will create inner conflict in you. Therefore, your aim should be morally sound. It must not cause injury to others. It must not be selfish.
Perseverance alone does not assure success. No amount of stalking will lead to a game in a field that has none. -- I Ching
2. Regularly Reaffirm Your Goal
Once you have set your goal, then continually reaffirm to yourself that you wish to finish the task or reach the objective. Remind yourself by writing it in a place or a notebook where you will constantly see it. Read materials that will enhance your determination to pursue your objective.
3. Create Greater Leverage That Will Increase Your Motivation
Example: Increase your motivation by creating a mental association that will connect sweet and fatty foods to something you dislike. Or reward yourself for resisting sweets, or penalizing yourself for succumbing to it. Make a game out of it.
4. Develop the Habit of Finishing What You Started
Once a person has developed this habit, he has within him a powerful tool connected with perseverance. He will not give up until something is done, no matter how inconvenient.
Nothing is so fatal to character or accomplishment as unfinished jobs. - S. W. Sill
5. Be Aware of Your Fears
Lack of perseverance is often due fear to do something or face consequences. You may wish to learn how to speak in public, but you are always overcome by fear. Conquer your fears, for they are often our own traitors, turning ourselves against our priorities.
All too often people quit when the going gets tough, often when just one more step would have carried them triumphantly to victory. There is one unbeatable rule for the mastery of sorrows and disappointments, and that is transmutation of those emotional frustrations through definite planning. It is a rule that has no equal. -- Napoleon Hill.
Never despair, but if you do, work on in despair, -- Burke
6. Make a Timeframe for Attaining the Goal
. . .It is said that a goal without a deadline is not a goal.
7. Stick Closely to your Timeframe
Your timeframe is your own appointments with yourself. Do not skip them in the same way that you do not miss your appointments with other people.
8. Realize that there is No Failure
There is only temporary defeat. Failure is in not trying to pursue what is worth aiming for. Keep on. Keep at it. Once you know that it is worthwhile, you will not fail.
We can do anything we want to do if we stick to it long enough. -- Helen Keller Success in life depends upon staying power. The reason for failure in most cases is lack of perseverance. Men get tired and give up. -- J R. Miller
Diligence is the mother of good fortune. -- Cervantes
Victory belongs to the most persevering. -- Napoleon
The greatest results in life are usually attained by simple means and the exercise of ordinary qualities. These may for the most part be summed up in these two -- commonsense and perseverance. -- Owen Feltham.
The secret of success is constancy of purpose. -- Disraeli
There are two ways of attaining an important end: force and perseverance. Force falls to the lot only of the privileged few, but austere and sustained perseverance can be practiced by the most insignificant. Its silent power grows irresistible in time. -- Anne Swetchine
Some men give up their designs when they have almost reached the goal; while others, on the contrary, obtain a victory by exerting, at the last moment, more vigorous efforts than before. -- Polybius
Patience and perseverance are essential in the inner fight. The higher self's war with the lower self is a great struggle. Develop these two virtues to a maximum degree and strengthen them by all manner of intelligent discipline and constant exercise. -- Sivananda
The world wants the kind of men who do not shrink from temporary defeats in life, but come again and wrestle triumph from defeat. -- Theodore Roosevelt
Tough times never last. . . but tough people do. -- Robert Schuller
Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination are omnipotent. The slogan "press on" has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race. -- Calvin Coolidge
Aim at perfection in everything, though in most things it is unattainable; however, they who aim at it, and persevere, will come much nearer to it, than those whose laziness and despondency make them give it up as unattainable. -- Chesterfield
The difference between perseverance and obstinacy is, that one often comes from a strong will, and the other from a strong won't. -- Henry Ward Beecher
Never give in, never give in, never never never never -- in nothing, great or small, large or petty -- never give in except to convictions of honor and good sense. - Winston Churchill
Copyright 1995. Permission to reprint is granted provided acknowledgment is made to:
Theosophical Society in the Philippines, 1 Iba St., Quezon City, Philippines
"If five percent of the people work for peace, there will be peace."