Some people seem to get all the lucky breaks, don’t they? While there are probably times and circumstances where luck seems to come into play, nine times out of ten, success isn’t a result of being lucky. It’s just that we don’t see all the hard work and focus that’s gone into it. We aren’t aware of the long hours that someone put into that side business or the additional project that resulted in the promotion. We don’t see others working through the night and giving up fun weekend excursions to make progress on the tasks they've set themselves.
We also don’t see all the failures and setbacks that happen along the way. We don’t like to talk about those, and neither do successful people. As a result, we assume that it was smooth sailing for the person who’s successful. Usually, the opposite is true. We learn best from our mistakes and often make the most progress after a major failure or setback.
When you face a setback or failure, you have two choices. You can call it quits, or you can figure out what went wrong, adjust, and move forward. Can you guess which choice successful people make? That’s right, they learn from their mistakes and get right back to work.
This kind of persistence and discipline doesn’t come easily to most people. It takes effort, and it requires you to build habits that reinforce these skills on a daily basis. Make yourself work towards one of your goals on a daily basis. Don’t give up when you fail or when things simply aren’t working out. Instead, reflect on what you’ve done and what you could have done differently. Implement those changes and get back to work.
Persistence and discipline are the skills you learn. We are not born with these abilities. Some people were lucky enough to acquire them in childhood and others learn them much later in life. But that's ok. I’m here to tell you that they are essential skills and ones worth getting better at if you want to become successful and build the life of your dreams.
There’s no time like the present to start working on that “overnight” success. What can you do today to help you make progress? Go and do that. Then come back tomorrow and take the next step, and the next, and so forth. Get in the habit of doing something every single day to move in the right direction, even if things don’t work out. Getting back on that metaphorical horse right away and trying again is an integral part of being persistent. Keep practicing discipline and persistence, and they’ll quickly become habits that are part of who you are and how you work.