Over the past years I have observed my dog when he wants to get my attention or is in need of something. He would run to me, then away from me toward his targeted goal. He would repeat this action until I follow or acknowledge him. If I am not speedy in attending to his needs, he would run around the room in a silly fashion, until his needs are met. My Teddy Bear does not give up.
They say that procrastination is the world’s greatest sin. Well, if that is the case, I am not a sinner. Unlike some people, I need to see anything that I undertake, to its final discourse, in a timely manner. I am far from perfect, but I make it my business to create outlines, set deadlines and push.
The art of pushing is called perseverance; which Webster’s Dictionary defines as, ‘persistence in doing something, despite difficulty or delay in achieving success.’ To persevere is to plan with purpose, pursue with power and deliver with intent. However, the steps to success require hard work, determination and sacrifice.
I sometimes think about our ancestors and many of the tough decisions they made, to ensure our existence in today’s world. I think about the slaves and all the troubles, strife, heartaches and torture they endured; always mindful of a ‘deliverer,’ who would rescue them from the slave masters’ whips and chains. Had it not been for their determination, it would be difficult to imagine the state of our calamity.
Here are a few points to remember, if you are to reach your goals:
• Define what it is you want to achieve
• Write it in deliverable terms
• Talk it through and ensure it is realistic and measureable
• Set the target date and deadline
• Do everything in the time frame as outlined
• Keep your eyes on the prize
• Reward yourself for each step taken
• Do not beat up yourself if there are setbacks; take your time, breathe, shake it off and continue moving
• Have someone else to be your conscience; someone who can hold you accountable
• Practice relaxing techniques to perform daily
• If you have to extend your deadline; do so, thoughtfully
• Celebrate when the task is done.
Harriett Tubman told the slaves, “If you hear the dogs, keep going. If you see the torches in the woods, keep going. If there is shouting after you, keep going. Don’t ever stop. Keep going. If you want a taste of freedom, keep going.”
~ Dr. Pam
Point to Ponder: If a mother stops pushing during labour, the baby might be in trouble.
• Askdoctorpam is an advice column that is featured every week in this journal. Dr. Pam is a Clinical Psychologist trained in all areas of mental health. Your letters and comments are encouraged. You may email your letters or comments to firstname.lastname@example.org