Let’s talk a little about the word that probably pops up most when researching leadership literature: “Persistence.” It is said that if you try and try again, you will eventually get it right. If you keep trying, things will eventually go your way, or you will ultimately start performing better. Right?
The thing about persistence is that it not only includes “trying again and again,” but also that you should prepare in between tries, too. This is the most crucial part, yet most people don’t do it.
As babies, we started off by lying down flat for a few months, observing others, and processing their movements. We learned that others were moving around and observed how. We knew that we also wanted this kind of freedom. After “collecting knowledge” on movement, we tried it ourselves and started making attempts. The result was crawling. None of us crawled on our first attempt; instead, we tried, observed, learned, and implemented with our next effort.
The same goes for walking. We tripped over things and fell a few times. We adjusted our speed and balanced it out.
If we did not learn from each fall, changed our plan, and adjusted our methods, none of us would be walking today. We would have given up on walking long ago.
Fast forward to today, we tend to forget this principle in situations where it is most needed. With each attempt at something, we need to take in information, process and understand it, implement it, and THEN try again. Living in our modern “microwave world,” we sometimes forget that with success, comes (very) hard work.
You have to understand that you have only really tried once you have exhausted absolutely all avenues! This means doing research, gaining knowledge, understanding the information, processing what you have learned, revising, and implementing. And that only counts as one try. If you have failed, you go back to the drawing board and start the cycle again!
We can no longer afford to give up easily. Employability has become competitive, and living a good life has become expensive.
We owe it to ourselves and our families to be (properly) persistent.