The Sunday Mail
GIVING up is easy. Thinking with your feet as you run away is easier. If you do not persist, you can not win.
There is no prize or pride for defeatism. We all love the stories of rising and rising and rising. Regrettably, life is not a huge grassland savanna. Ups and downs are part of the territory.
True greatness is moving from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm or denting passion and confidence.
Standing up one more time when you have just endured a heavy blow is tough and rough. Nothing great is shaped without abrasion. No one ever said champions do not get hit. Energy and enduring persistence have the last say in all matters of greatness and success.
Never give up. Do not stop trying, even if you are crying. Pain does not invalidate the nobility of your goals.
The passion to start is a great send-off. It is the will to persist long after the emotions of the beginner are gone that creates greatness.
Obstacles, challenges and adversity are all stepping stones to greatness and cousins of success. Hard times are the harness of success and crucible of exploits. Trying times are not the times to stop trying. Untested knowledge is empty theory. Those with MBA degrees and only want to navigate in business when the waters are calm and the tide is low will bear certificates as placards but never become masters of business.
Great sea-men emerge in turbulence. The world is full of people that are waiting for a “free pass” to greatness. Regrettably, we all have to take the staircase up because the easy lift is not working.
Calvin Coolidge, the 30th President of America, knew that this magic ingredient is the raw material of success. Coolidge said: “Nothing in this 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 alone are omnipotent.”
These words need to be recited everywhere because too many people are looking for easy success and greatness without effort. Ambition that is not coupled with persistent and patient work disappoints.
The words of Coolidge must be displayed in every classroom because there are people who think that many letters will replace persistence, strategy and bold action.
No quantity of certificates will replace diligent work, discipline and persistent action. This statement should be placed in every gym and dressing room because there are people who think that talent alone is all they need to win without realising the need for discipled persistent action.
Talent that does not work is no talent at all.
This statement should be on every screensaver because there are people who think that technology can replace the need for persistence, creativity and human effort. This statement must be on every church door, because there are people who think that faith will work without persistent effort. Faith is persistent, focused and demanding work. Faith is not a presumption of veiled laziness. Too many scoff at hard, diligent work and hope to harvest without sowing, persistent cultivation and humble, diligent work.
To reap without sowing is to steal your neighbour’s harvest. This statement must be placed on every farm gate because there are people who love the glory of wearing a farmer’s hat but are not willing to carry the burdensome agony and persistence of the farmer. Like a stamp, stick to the envelope of your dreams until you are delivered to the door of greatness.
Too many people love to sit and imagine that chairs are machines that manufacture greatness. Laziness, regardless of the clothes it wears, will never birth success.
The formula for greatness has three Ps at its centre. These are Patience, Persistence and Perspiration. Great things happen for those who are willing to patiently wait. Rushing a pregnancy will not deliver a full-term baby. Time spent in any womb is not wasted time. Persistence can overcome almost any challenge and neutralise any resistance.
When you knock and keep on knocking, the door must finally open. When you seek and keep seeking, you finally find. You can put your mind to something, courageously do everything it takes, patiently work and update your strategy to get there.
Greatness belongs to those who were willing to stick to the knitting long after quitters had concluded that things do not work and sustained effort is a waste.
Never believe a lazy person’s report and musings: They are usually a rich picture of excuses blown up to avoid responsibility, diligent and persistent action.
Goals are important. Always make them big, bold, exciting and challenging. Match the size of the goals with the willingness to take action to make the goals happen. Your conviction is manifested in your action. Your desire is revealed by your persistence.
Thoughts alone will not help you deliver the baby; some pushing and lots of labour is necessary. Your big goals will always arrive enveloped in persistence and enabled by patient focus. Work is a blessing. Rewards given without working are an oddity.
Sometimes things do not work. Defeat happens but never wear your defeat like a hat. Your defeats should strengthen your resolve and sharpen your spirit. You may encounter many, many, many defeats, but you must not be defeated.
Refuse to let defeat colonise your mind and sap your confidence. Get up more times than you fall. Defeat is the gym of greatness. It is tailored feedback and a wake-up call. All successful people most likely were not born that way. They all have some persistence story to tell. To arrive at greatness, take the vehicle of persistence.
Persist like a mad possessed one. Refuse to understand the narrative of the defeated, despondent and cynics. Resistance enables motion. Keep moving, ever so patiently. No two days are alike. Some days are bright; you wake up with energy and take big strides and feel satisfied when you retire to bed. Some days are bad, hot and bitter. You take action and it feels as though you are stationary or sweating on a disused treadmill, while chasing your tail.
Whatever the experience keep moving.
Do not give up so easily. If you cannot fly, then just hop, step and jump. If you cannot jump, then run as fast as you can. If you cannot run, then walk fast and keep walking. If you cannot walk, then crawl on.
If you cannot crawl, just roll towards your goal. Just do not stop moving and edging forward. If a kilometre is too long, just do a metre at a time. If there is no highway, blaze your own trail. If a day is long, just give an hour to your goal.
Persist like a mad man. Pursue your goals until they are begging for mercy. Never let your situation have the last say.
Persist until you arrive.
Committed to your greatness.
Milton Kamwendo is a cutting-edge international transformational and inspirational speaker, author and coach. He is a strategy and innovation consultant and leadership coach. His life purpose is to inspire people to release the greatness trapped in them. He can be reached at: [email protected] and on WhatsApp at: 0772422634.