Perseverance is one of the key ingredients to accomplishing anything worthwhile in life and professionally. Growth is not always linear: there are usually ups and downs. Sometimes it may even feel like you took two steps back when what you intended was to move forward. At times like these is where perseverance is most useful; it encourages us to keep going. You may not know for sure when you’ll get there or what you will discover along the way, but perseverance will ensure you keep going long enough to find out.
According to Merriam-Webster, the definition of perseverance is:
“continued effort to do or achieve something despite difficulties, failure, or opposition”
Setbacks happen often enough that it is difficult to stay on track. Part of growth is persevering: having the ability to face challenges and move past them. The problems we encounter can either be defeating or empowering. Instead of pushing us to quit, they can help us grow in our capacities as professionals and leaders. Once we achieve our objectives, we will be able to handle more.
Life will always throw challenges our way. The key is to build resilience. We can increase our ability to deal with those challenges so that we are more capable in the end. How can we become more resilient? Experience is a big part of it. With time and practice, you can develop a thicker skin.
There are also practices you can develop that can work specifically for you to increase your ability to deal with setbacks; whether they are meditation, exercise, or hobbies, the choice is yours. Taking a break and dedicating some time for yourself can help you return to your project energized. Little by little, what once seemed insurmountable will no longer be intractable.
The more you practice working through the difficulties that inevitably come with any big project or task, the better you will get at it. Sometimes getting to the other side is not about knowledge or talent. Often, all it takes to win the race is being able to stand the pressure and keep taking actions despite the losses.
There are times when the challenges you are facing may be telling you that the approach you are using is not working. In this case, instead of giving up, reframe the problem. Maybe it’s a matter of being flexible and finding a way to work around the issue; instead of trying to force a certain way of doing things, is there another way to reach your destination that will achieve the same result?
Sometimes we are unconsciously attached to one given point of view. Ask others, as they can often see things we can’t because we are in the middle of the work. If you get multiple perspectives, you will be able to arrive at a better solution to solve the puzzle.
The answer, when the going gets tough, is sometimes not obvious. Part of perseverance is finding a way around obstacles, which may involve experimenting. In this case, it might be worthwhile to explore. Try different experiments that aren’t too risky to see if any of those solutions work.
Keep going. The more you practice, the better you will get. You will grow, and your company will grow with you.