The race of life is a marathon, not a sprint. – Tony Robbins
In this week’s episode, we will be unpacking persistence. The idea is that life is a marathon and not a sprint has changed the way I turn up because I want to be in it for the long haul. Rest has become as equally as important as working hard. One of my mottos is life is long, and life is short, and I try to make choices accordingly. I find it helps me stay grounded, live in the moment, and plan for and work towards the future. Persistence is hard work, and at times we need to remind ourselves of our why. Sometimes we don’t feel like doing the things we have committed to, but we want the results.
So how do we persist when we face difficulties or delay in achieving our own definition of success. I like to remind myself of where I started because it helps me to keep on going when it gets challenging and uncomfortable. We can fall into the trap of only celebrating the big wins and brush over the micro wins that got us to where we are. Celebrating provides recognition and can boost our self-esteem.
I wonder if we undervalue taking a break, especially when we take on or place on ourselves an unrealistic standard that we have an infinite supply of energy. I am sorry to burst your bubble (I have already popped mine). We are limited to how much we can achieve until we need to be replenished. We need rest and sleep. Because not getting enough sleep can lower one’s sex drive, weaken the immune system, cause thinking issues, and leads to weight gain. It may also increase the risk of certain cancers, diabetes, and even car accidents. (to read more click here). Sounds pretty important; what do you think?
Another question to ask is what are our timeframes and expectations? Do we place unnecessary stress on ourselves because we “think” we need to be at a specific place at a certain age? I am all for growth and progress, but what happens when these demands start to hinder our ability to turn up in all our capacity and enjoy the journey. We can fall into the trap of living for the one day when and missing out on now.
Here are some things that we can do to remain persistent during this marathon called life:
- Create a vision for our future; this may change as we go on, but we need to focus on something beyond the here and now. This can be done with a list of goals or a vision board. When I started my studies, the college provided a flow chart of the studying journey, and it has been so satisfying working my way through it and highlighting it as I go.
- Maintain realistic expectations knowing that it will be hard at times. Remind yourself why you started and why you are doing it. Make a list of your strengths and what you have already overcome and navigated. We all need reminding!
- Refuel yourself often with good nutrition, movement and sleep. Look at ways to be encouraged and supported along by others the way. Life is not meant to be done alone and on empty.
- Enjoy the in-betweens.
Do the chances of giving up increase if we don’t pace ourselves? Most probably as overwhelm and exhaustion can start to creep in. Sometimes giving up may seem like the only way out when rest is what is required. Other times we may need to change paths; however, I wonder if we do this best when we are not exhausted and depleted. I would love to hear how you have remained persistent? In the meantime, take care and wishing you a wonderful week ahead.