“Effort only fully releases its reward after a person refuses to quit.” Napoleon Hill
Scanning a bookshelf in my tiny office I chanced to come across Think & Grow Rich, a classic by Napoleon Hill. Yes, it’s a primer on wealth in the traditional sense, but it’s really a guide to understanding the laws of success whatever your field of endeavor and Napoleon uses plenty of examples of creatives to inspire and instruct. I opened it to a page I’d bookmarked and it turned out to be about persistence, a quality I certainly need more of and I’m sure you do, too:
“You can Train Yourself to Be Persistent”
“Persistence is a state of mind, therefore it can be cultivated. Like all states of mind, persistence is based upon definite causes, among these are:
a) Definiteness of purpose. Knowing what one wants is the first and, perhaps, the most important step toward the development of persistence. A strong motive forces one to surmount many difficulties.
b) Desire. It is comparatively easy to acquire and to maintain persistence in pursuing the object of intense desire.
c) Self-reliance. Belief in one’s own ability to carry out a plan encourages one to follow the plan through with persistence.
d) Definiteness of plans. Organized plans, even though they may be weak and entirely impractical, encourage persistence.
e) Accurate knowledge. Knowing that one’s plans are sound, based upon experience or observation, encourages persistence; ‘guessing’ instead of ‘knowing’ destroys persistence.
f) Cooperation. Sympathy, understanding, and harmonious cooperation with others tend to develop persistence.
g) Will-power. The habit of concentrating one’s thoughts upon the building of plans for the attainment of a definite purpose leads to persistence.
h) Habit. Persistence is the direct result of habit. The mind absorbs and becomes a part of the daily experiences upon which it feeds. Fear, the worst of all enemies, can be effectively cured by forced repetition of acts of courage. Everyone who has seen active service in war knows this.”
There we have it: a no-nonsense formula for strengthening our “persistence” muscle. Write on!
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