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Expert Tips for Perseverance

On the journey to achieving your ultimate goal, whether it be a karate goal like a black belt or one outside the dojo, such as starting a business for example, you will inevitably have times where self – doubt or outside pressures or distractions weaken your resolve – this is perfectly normal. It is important to remember that success does not come at our convenience; it comes at our inconvenience. Anything worthwhile achieving takes time and effort and because of this, along the way we may have numerous occasions where we question our ability or desire to achieve what it was we first set out to achieve.

While we may not be able to prevent these occasional feelings coming on, we can make ourselves aware and set up a plan to help us stay focused – to help us stay strong in tough or down times.

The following are some expert hints from Joseph Galea on the topic of perseverance:

  1. Surround yourself with people who believe in you. These people may be fellow students, teachers, coaches or friends. They will supply you with feedback, emotional support and perhaps even new strategies. Their input will give you new perspectives on your goal and can rejuvenate your resolve.
  2. Enlist the support of your family. By starting out with gaining the support of your family, you will not only have them for inclusion for the “People who believe in you” group mentioned above, but you will also avoid having them sabotage your success for other endeavours in the future. When given the opportunity to be part of your plans, your family will instinctively want to help. Often siblings in families can bring each other down due to the familiarity of their relationship – No harm is meant but it still occurs. Try asking them for support. Mention that you really want to achieve something but the road ahead may not be easy and their support and encouragement would mean the world to you.
  3. Understand that the realisation of your goals is not an overnight thing. Change is a process, not a project. Focus on your intermediate goals, objectives where you will see changes more quickly, such as mastering an individual technique. Before you know it, your bigger goals (such as gradings) will be achieved as well.
  4. Overcome your frustration. Anthony Robbins outlined that one of the 5 key ingredients to achieving success in your life is to learn to handle massive frustration. Every person on the planet gets frustrated at times, especially when we feel we are not progressing, but it is how we respond to this that makes all the difference. Some quit in frustration, while others dig deep and keep pushing. Dig your way out of frustration by setting tiny goals to achieve. Remember that success as a big goal is the consistent achievement of many small goals. Remind yourself what it is you want. Imagine how you will feel once it is achieved.
  5. Focus your goals on the positive, not the negative. This helps your psychological motivation to succeed. It is much easier to succeed when your goal is positive. For example, focus on ‘wanting’  to become lighter and faster, rather than on ‘not wanting’ to stay slow and heavy.
  6. Re-evaluate your goals. Don’t set the bar too high. Start with small pieces of the picture – an achievable goal. There is a saying, how do you eat an elephant? Piece by piece. If your goals are too big you must be able to see this and size them down to something realistic that you believe you can achieve. Pursue your goals in a reasonable and fun manner.
  7. Reward yourself. Treat yourself to something fun when you achieve your goals. Whether they be the small goals along the way or the big goal. It does not have to be something expensive or elaborate – just something you will enjoy.
  8. Follow the peak-to-peak principle. In life, we have ups and downs. We are either up on the peaks or down in the valleys. John Maxwell, one of the world’s foremost speakers on leadership, talks of never making decisions when you are in one of life’s valleys as you have no clear view. All you see is either side of the valley. When people make decisions in the valleys they make poor choices as they lack proper vision or perspective of the situation.

By Joseph Galea

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