The Cost Of Persistence, by Doug Grady

per·sist·ence (noun): firm or obstinate continuance in a course of action in spite of difficulty or opposition.

“I will persist until I succeed.” -Og Mandino

“Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful people with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.” -Calvin Coolidge

"Energy and persistence conquer all things." -Ben Franklin

The universal power of persistence has been proclaimed in self-help books and motivational speeches for hundreds of years. Persistence, put simply, is a refusal to give up. The talented may give up, the educated may give up, the genius may give up. The persistent one does not.

I am a persistent person. For as long as I can remember, whether in school, sports, or sales it seemed to take me longer than others to gain an understanding of the critical elements of a given discipline. Once I "got it", I would often surpass my peers. I always attributed this to persistence.

However nothing in any definition of persistence speaks to intelligence, innovation, or being strategic. It may be implied that if we continue to push long enough we will explore creative ways to succeed, but this is by no means an automatic element of persistence. Persistence without thought can lead to staying too long in a relationship or job, beating a dead horse, stalking…

When the economy turned in 2007, I was persistent. I pushed. I put myself out there. I went on many sales calls. Companies and industries that previously generated tens of thousands of dollars for my business yielded little or no revenue from my efforts.

But I was persistent. I refused to give up. I made more phone calls and booked more meetings. I tried harder. My "obstinate continuance in a course of action in spite of difficulty or opposition" was undeterred. And eventually... things got worse. I continued to produce dismal results. My company lost more and more money. I became increasingly frustrated. I was persistently sucked into the quagmire of mediocrity.

Recovery of any kind begins with the admission that you have a problem. In this case I had several. It took some time before l began to see the light at the surface of the muck. The turning point came when I finally accepted the fact that what I was doing was not working. My persistence had failed me.

Faith, humility and a re-commitment to growth eventually augmented my persistence. I asked for help. I let go of behaviors that weren't serving me. My book, The Ripple Effect, highlights some of the personal struggles, lessons, and ripples that followed during this very challenging time in my life.

“As long as we are persistent in our pursuit of our deepest destiny, we will continue to grow. We cannot choose the day or time when we will fully bloom. It happens in its own time.” -Dr. Denis Waitley

Professionally, there were lessons to learn as well. I went "back to school" and educated myself on how to survive and thrive in the "new normal." My studies were focused in the areas of:

Online strategy
Social media
Personal marketing
Strategic alliances
Attraction versus promotion
Recurring revenue

In the next few weeks I will be sharing some of the best of what I have learned and applied in these areas over the last four and a half years. If you are not sure whether or not you are opted in for my blog, take a moment to do so now ( And be sure to share this article with the people in your life who can utilize it.

Persistence, like many other attributes, can be a liability. Sometimes we need to slow down and reevaluate. Other times we need to let go of what's not working and do something different.

Persist intelligently.

Author's Bio: 

Doug Grady is President of High Achievers Network. Doug has been studying and teaching the pathways to personal potential for over 20 years. Exciting, entertaining and enlightening are words invariably used to describe his unique seminars and workshops. Doug is also a musician and the author of the book, The Ripple Effect.

"Doug Grady gives you practical, proven ideas and methods you can use immediately, and he presents them in a fast-moving, entertaining and enjoyable style." -Brian Tracy, Author, Maximum Achievement

"Doug Grady has real world information that will make you listen, make you laugh, make you think, and make you money." -Jeffrey Gitomer, Author, The Sales Bible