Success demands persistence. Napoleon Hill describes persistence as the combination of willpower and desire, but ruthless, cold-blooded, and other terms may come to mind when thinking of the uber-rich and ultra-successful, the Waltons, Gates, and Buffets of today. In Napoleon Hill's time, it was the Carnegies, Rockefellers, and Edisons.

Others who managed to hang on are counted by Hill among the most affluent and successful people of the early 20th century in the best-selling business book of all time, "Think and Grow Rich." Even they have been called more colorful names for their persistence.

Think and Grow Your Career, Part 9 of 10

Henry Ford was called obstinate for his hard-nosed follow-through. Fannie Hurst conquered the publishing world, but not before she received 36 rejection slips from The Saturday Evening Post. Kate Smith sang for years without money until Broadway knuckled under to her persistence.

Perhaps one does not want to be judged in those terms, rejecting success if it comes wrapped in uncaring and blind ambition. Many have been haunted by the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future, even though they don't resemble Scrooge in the least. Many interpret the demands of Western culture to mean that staying "good" requires remaining impoverished. If the good job or the promotion is attained, suddenly, our morals are suspect, and this becomes the best-of-all reason to give up.

The argument to consider is that individuals are capable of drawing that boundary for themselves. Just because a person aims hard for success doesn't mean s/he suddenly becomes hard-hearted. It is in their power to prevent that.

Some give in to fear. When it comes to a job search or career change, they fear looking foolish for backing a loser, especially when that so-called loser is themselves. They fear ridicule, even if it is behind their backs. They fear letting people down who were supporting them, emotionally and financially. They fear failure itself. It is hard to admit defeat. It is harder to carry on when they appear wrong, especially if their trusted colleagues, friends, and even family members have decided they've lost.

Over the course of 20 years, Hill interviewed and observed more than 200 rich and successful individuals to find a recipe for success. In the book, he offers eight steps:

1. Desire
2. Faith
3. Autosuggestion
4. Specialized knowledge
5. Imagination
6. Organized planning
7. Decision

Step 8, the final one, is Persistence, in Hill's own words, "The sustained effort necessary to induce faith."

In keeping with Hill's philosophy that the only person who fails is the one who quits, what will keep your job search going?

Copyright © 2010, Jeri Hird Dutcher. All Rights Reserved.
Permission to Reprint: This article may be reprinted, provided it appears in its entirety with the following attribution: Reprinted by permission of Jeri Hird Dutcher, nationally certified career coach and resume writer.

Author's Bio: 

For five steps that will help you persist through your job search, visit Jeri Hird Dutcher is a Certified Professional Career Coach and Resume Writer with clientele worldwide.