Developing persistence is a master skill to success. It is easier to relax and do nothing, or just live in our comfort zone, rather than face the uncertainty and discomfort of sailing thru our goals. Plus, the idea of failure and hardship is unbearable.
But if you want to create change in your life and achieve success, now is the time to develop and master persistence. Here are six (6) ways to help you develop persistence:
1. Identify Your Wants and Desires
If you don’t know where you are going, you will probably end up somewhere else. – Lawrence J. Peter
Before you can develop persistence and eventually achieve success, you need to first identify your wants or desires. You can do this by simply writing down specifically all the things you want to have or accomplish. List down all your desires and wants, no matter how impossible they are to achieve in the moment.
2. Determine Your Motivation
Motivation comes from a deep reason why we want to achieve or have something. If you know why you’re doing what you’re doing, it gives you more energy to keep moving.
For an instance, you want to publish a book. Creating a book takes time and patience. If you don’t have enough motivation, a reason why you need to publish the book, you probably can never finish it. But if you’re motivated by the thought of influencing and teaching millions of readers thru your words, only then will you keep pushing yourself to work on finishing the book.
3. Outline Your Definite Action Step
Identifying your wants or desires speaks of what you want to achieve. Determining your motivation shows the reasons why you want to achieve what you want. Outlining your definite action step is necessary to know how you will be able to achieve what you want.
When you know how to get what you want, it makes it easier to achieve it. To know how, it pays to do some research and planning of what needs to be done on your part. Be specific on each step you need to take. Identify at least two (2) ways and plans on how you can achieve your goals.
4. Keep a Positive Mental Attitude
The road to success is not easy, in fact, it’s challenging, this is why only few succeeds. There will be countless times you will be face with defeat and failures that if you are weak, you’ll be succumbing to negative thoughts of fears and doubts.
In order to develop persistence and eventually succeed in your endeavor, always maintain a positive mental attitude, regardless of situation. Keep your thoughts focused on taking action towards your goals. Avoid negative thoughts and feelings for it will ruin your concentration and persistence.
5. Build Your Mastermind Group
Mastermind Group composes of people who can help you succeed towards your goal. Choose carefully who you will trust as part of your mastermind group. If possible, include only those who can give you unbiased judgments and who has positive mental attitude. You can’t afford wasting your time listening to cynical advice and pessimist people. These types of people won’t help you succeed; instead, they will drown your energy that can eventually lead to failure.
6. Develop Discipline and Habit
All your goal-setting and planning will go to waste if you won’t be able to develop discipline and good habit.
Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment. – Jim Rohn
There will be a lot of hindrances that will stop you from moving towards your goal, and without proper discipline, it will be easy for you to sail away. Upholding discipline and good habits can help you stay in the course, even despite difficulties.
If you've ever learned to play a sport or taken up a new personal interest, you'll know how satisfying it can feel to reach a significant goal. As well as learning something new, you've changed yourself for the better. That's an empowering thought!
Good habits lie behind many of these positive changes. The repeated actions – attending a weekly sports practice, for example – help you to build the change into your daily life. In this article, we'll discuss how good habits can help you grow, personally and professionally.
You are more likely to achieve worthwhile goals if you have good habits.
Illustrating this, a 2007 study suggested that we're not motivated by goals alone. In fact, once we've decided upon a goal, we're more motivated – on a day-by-day basis – by the habits that we have set up to reach it, than by the goal itself.
We're also motivated by reflecting on our progress towards our goals. A 2010 study reinforced this: here, researchers monitored people who were trying to form better eating habits. They found that those who were encouraged to reflect on how they were doing, and who adjusted their habits accordingly, were ultimately more successful.
Follow these steps to develop good habits in your daily life, and to kick-start positive change.
First, note down your personal and professional goals. You'll need to develop new habits to achieve these goals, so it's important that you're clear about what they are.
Now choose one goal, and think about the habits that you'll need to incorporate into your schedule to reach it. What do you need to start doing every day to make this vision a reality?
Michelle has always wanted to live in France. Her goal is to learn to speak French, so that she can apply for a role in her company's Paris office. She decides to spend 30 minutes each day learning French.
Find ways to build your new habit into your routine. Block out a regular time for it in your schedule, so that you can give your positive habit your full attention.
It's much easier to establish good habits if they fall during your most productive time of day.
Michelle knows that she's at her best earlier in the day. She also knows that she's usually too tired to focus on learning after work.
She decides that early morning will be the best time to learn French. She resolves to go to bed by 10:00 p.m. each night so she can wake up at 6:00 a.m. In the evening, she lays out her clothes for work, prepares the coffee machine, and makes her lunch for the next day. She also loads some French learning podcasts onto her laptop in the kitchen.
When she wakes in the morning, she turns on the coffee machine and starts listening to the podcasts as she waits for her coffee to brew.
As you progress with your new habit, reflect on how it's working for you. If you're struggling to stick to it, think about why this is. Were you too ambitious? If so, consider setting a more manageable short-term goal to remotivate yourself.
Or, if your new habit isn't delivering the change that you expected, reflect on what's gone wrong. You may need to tweak your habit to make sure that it's delivering real change.
After listening to her French podcasts for three weeks, Michelle realizes that she's forgetting some of the words that she's learning. She knows that she remembers more when she makes notes, so she starts writing new words and their meanings down in a notebook.
A 2012 study showed that it can take an average of 66 days to form a new habit. That makes self-discipline essential.
One way to strengthen your self-discipline is to create a Treasure Map: a collage or visual representation of what you want to achieve. This will remind you why your new positive habit is so important to you. This can be just what you need to get motivated on days when your enthusiasm is waning.
Michelle creates a Treasure Map the night before she begins to learn French. She creates a collage full of pictures of Paris, including a picture of her company's Paris office. She feels excited about the opportunities ahead.
After two weeks of getting up early, she starts thinking about sleeping in. However, when she looks at her Treasure Map, she is reminded of her goal and she remembers how excited she feels about it. This goal is too important to give up on, and she can always sleep in at the weekends. She recommits to her morning learning.
It can be hard to stick to a new habit when you're on your own. So share your goals with colleagues or friends, and ask them to support you. For example, you could ask them to call you check on your progress. Or, if they share your goal, you could meet them each week to support one another and maintain progress.
Numerous apps have been designed to support people trying to develop new habits. For example, Stickk® was developed by Yale economists. It allows you to log a goal, and to appoint a mentor to monitor your progress. A quick search online will reveal similar tools.
After Michelle tells a colleague about her goal, he agrees to talk French with her over lunch one day each week. Michelle feels more energized about reaching her goal now that her colleague is supporting her, and she has a new opportunity to practice what she's learning. In return, Michelle helps her colleague towards his goal, which is to improve his English.
Habits are powerful. They bring about change one step at a time, and they help you ensure that these changes become part of your life.
However, you're far more likely to reach your goal if you make your new habits part of your regular routine. Follow these steps to make good habits stick:
When you decide to establish new habits in your life, focus on one at a time. If you try to overhaul your entire schedule at once, you'll likely get overwhelmed and quickly revert to old behaviors.