Success 104: How To Persevere

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Success 103: Get To Changing

You need to persevere beyond your comfort level

  • Anything worth the reward does not come easily
    • If it was easy, everyone would be doing it
  • To persevere is to find motivation across a long period of time or across multiple attempts
    • Persistence is really just another word for faith
    • Another synonym for perseverance is resilience
  • Perseverance is an art made of self-love, patience and determination
    • Be kind to yourself and forgive yourself
    • Openly dialogue with yourself about your negative emotions
    • Spend more time learning about what you did wrong
    • Write out everything that you can think of that could have caused the failure
    • Immediately make plans for your next efforts
  • Don’t stop visualizing the end result as a tangible thing
    • Feel, taste, touch or experience in your mind what you want to see in reality
    • Sometimes a five-minute break to regain your composure is all you need
  • Every time you try again, you need to want to succeed as much or more as the last time you tried
    • It’s often simply a numbers game until you succeed, and many people give up right before they’ve attained results

Prepare to face hurdles

  • Hardship is necessary, and it is actually good for you
    • Without hardship, you wouldn’t become stronger and more capable
    • Even as a child, you grew up through hardship, but it was how you used it that changed your thinking for the better
  • Immediately, when you do fail
    1. Keep your morals and values with you; if you leave them they will be harder to regain
    2. Quickly let others who will be affected by the negative consequences know as soon as possible
    3. Make plans immediately to fix things if they are urgent
    4. Quickly forgive yourself
    5. Avoid taking on any other responsibilities or self-analyzing until after the emotional wave of feeling the failure has passed
      • There’s no use in dwelling on what happened, especially if you’re not being rational
      • Don’t look at the score until the situation has played itself out
    6. Love yourself and give yourself a small consolation prize for doing your best
      • Giving yourself incentives will always go farther than punishing yourself
    7. Get back into your routine as soon as the emotional trauma has run its course
  • There are only a few ways of actually dealing with failures
    1. Wallowing in it and undermining any chance at self-confidence
    2. Personalizing it and self-identifying with it instead of seeing it as merely what they did
    3. Learning from it and seeing that there are many opportunities to grow from them
    4. Becoming inspired from it and seeing it as a challenge to be fought and overcome
    5. Blaming others or circumstances for those failings and not taking responsibility
    6. Reaching out to others to get input or feedback
  • Change is always uncomfortable
    • Every change will end opportunities, but is always an opportunity for something else
    • Most people are afraid of change, and they become more rigid to compensate, which renders them ineffective
    • If you can learn to enjoy or tolerate change, everything you will endure becomes easier
    • Naturally, as things change, someone may think of your idea first, but they might not have your own flavor of quality that you can add to it
  • Physical walls you’ll hit
    • Physical exhaustion
      • It often takes every ounce of strength you have to succeed
      • You can go a lot longer than you think you can when you are determined
    • Mistakes and failures
      • Society’s general attitude on failure is that it leads to punishment, which is often untrue
        • Though it may lead to setbacks in school, it rarely translates over into life
          • e.g. a college dropout will have the necessary time to start a successful business
      • Most failures should involve a “duh” moment, but never any self-abuse
        • Failures and mistakes are opportunities for growth
        • Success only seems predictable and obvious in hindsight, but it never actually is
          • This is a big reason why it’s so important to learn from others’ experiences
      • All of the failed attempts are increasing your chances of success
      • Your only true failure is giving up and not finding a worthy replacement
        • It’s not quitting if it’s focusing on a reasonable alternative
    • Resistance against what you want
      • It makes you stronger
      • Science has proven that the work we put into something actually changes how much we enjoy its payoff
      • Inconveniences give opportunities for more enriching and unique experiences
        • The most memorable personal life experiences are where things did not go according to plan!
  • Mental walls you’ll hit
    • Competition from others
      • Competitors can be discouraging, but remember that the biggest competitor is you against yourself
      • Don’t worry too much about what they’re doing except for how you may need to change your strategy
    • Uncertainty about the future, others’ behavior, others’ trustworthiness, etc.
      • When in doubt, pause and reflect on what you’re doing and why you’re doing it
      • If you’ve failed, you need to remember that you’re simply learning ways to not do something, and it’s usually unavoidable
      • There is an inherent risk to everything you’ll ever do, so learn to be happy with the risk
      • Once you’ve gained enough self-confidence, that risk is actually a very fun and exciting experience!
    • Stress, especially stress that can’t be avoided
    • Biological fear
      • Anxiety and worry are unhealthy, but the instinct of fear can make you perform spectacularly if you learn to channel it
      • The emotional state of fear, however, is in your full power to master
        • Often being fearful is simply a cynical approach to an adventure
        • Without living in fear, most of life becomes a bit like an engaging game, with more fun in playing it than in winning
    • Dissatisfaction
      • Sometimes you will succeed, but you won’t let yourself celebrate
      • Don’t let regret rob you of happiness
      • To downplay victories will dampen any momentum your success would have provided to move forward
      • One easy way to overcome this is to keep a journal and go back to read entries periodically
  • Social walls you’ll hit
    • Humility
      • Most of the hardships that come from failure often come from self-conceit and a sense of entitlement
      • By believing that nobody owes you anything, it’s a lot easier to handle when something goes wrong
      • Success is about service and not selfishness, which means that you need to place others’ needs before your own
    • Rejection
      • Of all the opportunities you’re going for, you only need to get one hit or one fortunate break
      • The desire to be liked and loved is inside all of us, and as a result nobody likes rejection
      • Fight social pressure and do the things that nobody else is willing to do
      • If you’re surrounded by negative people, you will never succeed until you replace them from your life with positive ones
      • Your actions will talk much more loudly than anything you can say
    • Loneliness
      • You will feel lonely sometimes when nobody is around to share in your initial successes
      • However, if you have a legitimately good set of goals, your ideas will very likely change history if you keep going

Find ways to keep trying again

  • Give yourself a rest after every attempt
    • When you need to rest, treat it as a break from the struggle
      • Everyone needs to rest to recharge and recuperate
      • However, you need to bring out tenaciousness and focus to come back into the fight
      • Most people become imbalanced either by never resting or never jumping back in
    • Without resting, your natural urges and desires can lead to something deconstructive
      • Trying to force yourself into what you don’t want to do
      • Berating and condescending yourself or others with self-made sayings and mantras
      • Making gigantic mistakes by losing all sense of finesse or purpose behind your action
      • Permitting any mental neuroses to take hold and drive you into a reinforcing negative vicious cycle
  • While resting, get your attitude straightened before the next attempt
    • Keep the big picture in mind
      • Think about the stories that you will be able to tell after you succeed
      • Fight the urge to think that the end of the story comes with the next failure
      • If you need to, sabotage your current comfort zone to force yourself to not have a backup plan to fall back on
    • Keep an honest perspective of yourself in the grand scheme of things
      • If you fail, often that’s simply mediocrity, which is rarely something anyone else cares about
      • You’re not alone in your struggles, and any problems you have are nothing in comparison to someone else
      • You might need to quit, and there’s nothing wrong with giving up if you’ve done your very best
    • Keep a positive attitude
      • Staying positive is necessary to be resilient and tenacious
        • This positivity must come from your own genuineness, not something you feel you ought to do
      • Convert every negative thought into a positive one that created its opportunity, even if it seems silly
        • The simplest way to stay positive to see the good thing that was necessary for the failure
          • e.g. the reason you lost the race was because you had qualified to even get into the race
          • e.g. you were turned down for the date with that attractive person because you got the confidence to ask them
          • e.g. the reason you’re complaining about losing the interview is because you’re not worried about your health
      • Regularly re-examine your goals after you’ve rested and before you’ve tried again
        • Make your goal smaller in order to attain it more easily
        • Examine the purposes you have behind the goal
          • Sometimes your purpose will completely change, meaning that your goal will need to change as well
        • Look at what you can sacrifice to make your goals happen, or ask yourself how far you really want to go with your goal
        • If you decide to drop it after trying for it, you will be doing it because of a more important purpose
      • Find creative new ways to attain the same goals

Periodically revisit and analyze your performance based on your goals

  • Find out your status right now
    • Keep your big goals in mind, and ask how your short-term goals line up with your long-term ones
    • What you’re doing
      • What can be improved?
      • What are you doing that you shouldn’t be doing?
      • What aren’t you doing that should be done?
      • Are you enabling others’ success through your actions?
      • How personally engaged are you with your goals?
    • How you’re seen
      • What do others think you are doing?
      • Are you effectively marketing yourself?
      • Are you building networks wherever you go?
      • Are you doing what you said you would do?
      • What should you be doing?
    • Make a self-crafted performance review
      • Skill/proficiency in doing what you’re setting out to do
      • Having adequate knowledge to do it
      • Ability to handle the burden of doing it
      • Steadily improving and becoming more efficient
      • Communicating properly with others
      • Handling things independently
      • Handling things cooperatively as a team player
      • Willing to take on more responsibilities
      • Consistent/reliable
      • Having good judgment and common sense throughout it all
      • Behaving fairly towards others
      • Gives timely feedback and clarifies boundaries
      • Hands off responsibilities appropriately
      • Disciplines properly when applicable
      • Takes steps to improve the group dynamic of wherever you are
    • Look at the positive moves you’ve already made from the past, and what you need to do from now
      • Over time, you will see steady improvement, which should inspire you onwards
      • When doing this, don’t be afraid to reassess why you’re doing things and what your long-term desires really are
  • Be realistic
    • You’re not going to accurately predict yours or others’ performance
      • If you’re less skilled in something, you are more likely to overestimate your abilities and underestimate others’
      • If you’re more skilled than average, you’re more likely to underestimate your abilities and overestimate others’
      • Often the simplest way to put this bias to rest is to measure your performance with numbers
    • No matter what you do, there will always be more work and more challenges ahead, and they will never be all done
    • Eventually you’ll run across a handicap of yours, and you will need to find a new creative way around it
  • Often, you need to do this because of post-traumatic growth
    • Some behaviors spur post-traumatic growth
      • Forgiving and learning to resolve the past
      • Seeing and accepting personal limitations and losses
      • Accepting the pain inherent to a vocation
      • Responding positively to failures and setbacks
    • There are some clear signs of post-traumatic growth
      • Priorities will change and you’ll be unafraid to do what makes you happy
      • You’ll feel closer to friends and family
      • You’ll understand yourself better and know who you really are
      • You’ll get a new sense of meaning and purpose
      • It becomes easier to focus on goals and dreams
    • Four major kinds of strength contribute to post-traumatic growth
      • Physical resilience, which shows in not sitting still
      • Mental resilience, which shows in focus, determination and willpower
      • Emotional resilience, with three positive feelings for every one bad one
      • Social resilience, which is the ability to connect with others
  • If you keep revisiting the same problem, you could have an addiction, and the 12 Steps are designed for liberation from that
    1. Admitted you are powerless over the object in question, and that your lives has become unmanageable
    2. Come to a belief that a power greater than yourselves can restore you to sanity
    3. Make a decision to turn your will and your life over to the care of God
    4. Make a searching and fearless moral inventory of yourself
    5. Admit to God, to yourself, and to another human being the exact nature of your wrongs
    6. Become entirely ready to have God remove all those defects of character
    7. Humbly ask Him to remove your shortcomings
    8. Make a list of all persons you’ve harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all
    9. Make direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others
    10. Continue to take personal inventory and when wrong promptly admit it
    11. Seek through prayer and meditation to improve your conscious contact with God, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out
    12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, try to carry this message to other addicts, and to practice these principles in all your affairs

Once you succeed at all, don’t forget where you came from

  • You’re not going to sabotage yourself when you’re trying, you only sabotage yourself when you’ve reached your peak and start growing complacent
    • As time progresses it gets easier to succeed, since successful people are more likely to succeed
  • Sometimes when you out-succeed others it’s tempting to gloat, but it will hurt you in the long-term
    • You’ll forget the sacrifices other people made for you
    • You forget the humbler beginnings you were in
  • Don’t sell out yourself
    • You should do what you love, not what you feel will give you the most money
    • This can become extremely difficult if you become an overwhelming success
  • Make greatness something anyone can achieve
    • It can be easy to try to corner the market on it, but the best contribution you can make is to give it away for free
    • Try to make every person you meet better off for having met you
  • Try not to consume yourself into anything that will destroy you, which is harder to do the more you succeed
    • The abuse of money or power
    • The abuse of sex and sexuality
    • The abuse of alcohol, drugs and other substances
    • An embittered attitude from all of the hardship you’ve had to face
  • It takes years to build a great reputation, but only one poor decision can destroy all of it
    • A legacy and reputation is far more important than money, since it can influence beyond yourself
    • If you have to justify it to yourself and hide it from others, it’s likely a bad idea
    • If it’s a big decision, wait on it for at least 24 hours

You will not accomplish this alone

  • You naturally become the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with
  • You will need to create a network to support you in your endeavors
    • Mentors who can guide and instruct you about the best path to take
    • Coaches that give you more specific direction in your day-to-day life
    • Peers to share successes and have a natural competitive spirit with
    • Subordinates and mentees to share time and devotion with to pass on the experiences
    • Associates that can provide you with knowledge, resources and additional connections to attain what you want
    • Miscellaneous people who give you new input, new ways of seeing things opportunities to learn
  • People respond to others’ successes in a few ways
    • Jealousy/Spite
      • Bitterly resents someone, and subsequent successes fuel the fire
      • Stay away from these people entirely, the problem is them and they will spread negativity and mental problems everywhere they go
    • Negative Competition
      • Tries to outperform the other person out of conceited selfishness
      • Coexistence is possible but challenging, and sometimes they will become rivals
    • Praise
      • Gives credit for the accomplishment, ranging from apathetic to positive
      • Most mentally well people do this, and it’s best not to dwell too much on it
    • Positive Competition
      • Tries to imitate the person
      • This is the highest form of flattery, and these people are often worth having in your life
  • Learn how to hand off tasks to people that aren’t subordinates
    • Friends and associates can more readily or capably perform some tasks better than you
  • This should be a diverse group of people
    • They should be from a diverse variety of backgrounds to keep you well-rounded
  • Your big break is going to come when someone wants to take a chance on you
    • The hardest success to achieve is the first one of any given set
    • When you’re suffering most is when people see what you’re really made of
  • Don’t seek praise, seek criticism
    • The best people in your life are the ones challenging you to grow, not the ones who affirm you
    • You will need constant feedback to understand where you should go
  • You might be able to achieve results to a point, but you need others to really turn anything into something worthwhile
Next: How To Get Along With Others