In the classic book Think and Grow Rich, author Napoleon Hill labels the eighth step toward riches as persistence, which he describes as "the sustained effort necessary to induce faith." That seems backwards from the way most of us think about persistence. If you have enough faith, you are more likely to be persistent. But Hill reminds us that if we continue to take action, even (or especially!) through the obstacles, we will see enough evidence to believe. He points out that we must have DESIRE in order to take the kind of action that leads to success. Sadly, so many people are lacking the intensity of desire, which then leads to the lack of persistence.

How about you? Are you one of the few who holds to a commitment and perseveres through the challenges? If you are, congratulations! That sets you apart! If you're not (yet), there are some simple things you can do to create the Persistence Factor for you:

• GET EXCITED about your goal, your life, your possibilities, your strengths! Create the desire and passion which becomes the energy to keep following through, no matter what.

• REFRAME FAILURE. I know so many people who hit a bump in the road, call it failure, and use it as a reason to stop. Read the biography of ANY successful person, and they've had more "failure" than success. For them, "failure" meant they must find a new way to succeed. If you set a big goal, by definition you will have challenges. So welcome those challenges as a natural part of the process.

• HOLD THE VISION. I think that part of the reason that Martin Luther King, Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech was so profound was that he created a powerful vision that people could hold on to and share. We're much more likely to follow through when we see a compelling future ahead. Create that compelling vision for your life and hold it close.

• MAKE PERSISTENCE EASY. I love systems. Why work really hard when you can have a system help you? You can make the Persistence Factor a powerful part of your life by building routines, getting great support, automating your reminders or your steps, and making sure that your beliefs are in alignment with your vision and goals.

Persistence: it may be the biggest factor between success and failure, between seeing yourself as a powerful creator of your destiny, or a victim at the mercy of life's whims. Persistence is actually pretty easy: it's just a step at a time, a choice at a time, a refusal to take your eye off the prize, and ultimately, it's the path to making your best dreams come true.

Author's Bio: 

Karen Van Cleve is a Personal Coach, Professional Speaker, and creator of the "Do It Yourself Brain Surgery" program. You have amazing, untapped potential to overcome disempowering patterns of thought and action, and boost your brain power for improved results. Visit Karen and learn more about your amazing brain at or email