persistence and commitment

 

Persistence
Pursing Excellence In Everyday Life
ŠLee Wise 2002,2003

I "PLACED"...

I couldn't believe it -- I placed.  My first swim meet. 

I felt GREAT!! 

In fact, I felt so great that I decided to join South Bend's 
local AAU swim team. 

Me, an AAU swimmer. 

The more I swam the more I was enjoying myself. I could see myself "winning." 

A PROBLEM

One problem: I also made the freshman football team. 
Normally, that would not be a difficulty except for one 
thing ... 

I knew I couldn't be excellent in both sports.

A DECISION TO FOCUS

I said -- 

"I'm going to swim and that's it.  No more football." 

And that's exactly what I did. 

For the next four years I swam. I swam during the normal 
swim season and I swam in the summer. 

I was relentlessly persistent. 

LET'S STOP AND THINK

Persistence is a combination of these forces working 
together. 

*Our desires. 
*Our commitment. 
*And a series of decisions to act. 

Persistence is the "fuel" that propels us toward achieving 
what we value most in life. 

I KNEW WHAT I WANTED

Back to my story. 

I had a *strong* desire.

I wanted to win. I wanted to be on that starting block, 
hear the gun fire, hit the water ...

And win! 

I MADE A COMMITMENT 

But I knew it would take one thing: commitment. 

I made the commitment to work like crazy because I wanted to *excel* at my sport. 

And that's exactly what I did. 

I FOLLOWED UP MY COMMITMENT WITH ACTIONS

Day in and day out I swam. 

I took a job in the summer with my coach at a local country club so I could work out under his guidance *before* my actual work day began. 

I decided to swim when I felt good.
I decided to swim when my gut hurt.
I decided to swim -- period. 

AND I LOST! 

Yep, I lost. 

I didn't get first in state. I lost to the same guy by a 
tenth of a second two years running. 

I didn't like the second place medal at the time. I have to 
be honest about that. 

But... 

I have also come to realize something: I *was* in 
the top three. 

Why? 

Because of persistence. 

There is great value in being persistent. I took the time 
and effort to develop one of the talents I have been given. 

LET'S REVIEW 

Remember the three "forces" of persistence.

1. A strong desire.
2. A firm commitment.
3. A series of decisions to act. 

GIVE IT A TRY 

Persist

Don't kill yourself trying.
I call that nuts. 

But do try! 

Persist 

*Focus on what you value and desire. 
*Make a commitment.
*Decide to act. 

Then ... 

Take one or more simple steps of action toward that goal 
which is SO important to you.

Do it today. 

Yours for a day filled with beautiful moments in time,


Lee 

P.S. Why not take a moment -- just a moment -- and renew or reinforce a decision to work of something that is
of great value to you? 

May I encourage you to never give up working on the aspects of your life you value the most?

-------------------------------
Lee is a seminary administrator, has a part-time business 
at home, and writes two motivational ezines: "A Beautiful
Moment In Time" and "Hope For Daily Living." Permission 
is given to distribute article. This paragraph must be 
included. Email: Lee@seariches.net
Link: http://www.seariches.net


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persistence and commitment - sports illustration