The concept of perseverance has been top of mind lately. Though it may not be PC to talk politics, I was deeply moved by President Obama's speech and quite a few other speeches (Michelle Obama and the Khan family) at the Democratic National Convention. Even though we may not agree with all Obama's policies or actions, he is a dynamic speaker, brilliant mind and the kind of leader I admire. When he mentioned that “Hilary doesn't quit,” that really stood out to me. Whether you are with Hilary or not, I have to say, that is true. (Michelle agrees too.) Perseverance beyond all odds is what inevitably leads to achievement, because no matter how long it takes, if you are diligent and keep your eye on the prize, success will come in some form or another.
Perseverance is “steady persistence in a course of action, a purpose, a state, etc., especially in spite of difficulties, obstacles, or discouragement.“ I'd like to honor perseverance within all of us and offer a gentle reminder to keep at our dreams, no matter what. There are countless stories could offer on the power of steadfast determination despite all odds.
One of my inspiring clients dreamed of living a bi-coastal life...but there were lots of obstacles in the way. To have one home on the east coast and another on the west coast, is no easy feat for a single, independent woman without a trust fund. To be a high-achieving women in the work force, one must have a long list of positive values...confidence, strength, intelligence, being personable, decisiveness, creativity and so much more. First things first, was her desire for positive change and living with more authenticity and joy. With the support of our coaching work together, renewed confidence led to more respect at work and increased abundance. There was an inner-knowing that she could accomplish this dream. Compared to LA, securing an apt in NYC is rather difficult and many roadblocks pushed her to temporarily give her apartment search a break. But she still had her goal in mind and didn't give up. Months later she tried again and was so excited when she signed the NYC lease and officially achieved her goal of bi-coastal living. I was so thrilled, as it brings me so much joy when I see dreams becoming fulfilled.
Over the years, I have witnessed my clients take leaps of faith and continue on, despite defeat and rejection, to achieve their goals. From being unemployed for months and persistently looking for work in creative ways and finally landing an ideal job, to one entrepreneur being miserable with her current undesirable clients and then standing her power to state her boundaries, attract new clients she loved and slowly, gently releasing the clients that no longer served her. Her personal life blossomed from sheer determination towards positive transformation. She was persistent in the practice of opening her heart, pushing the envelope of vulnerability and existing outside of the comfort zone. She is now glowing in an exciting new career path, jet setting and inspiring others with her effortless grace, style and compassion.
I'm always inspired by my visionary husband. When he has a clear picture of what he wants to create, it's like tunnel vision and he will do whatever it takes and be as patient as necessary, until his project has come to fruition. I saw this with our home, which was a total fixer upper. When we first looked at the house, I was like “hell no” and tried to get out of there as fast as possible. But he had a vision that I could not see. I let him roll with his vision and he designed the building to be a work of art for the neighborhood, eventually we opened a business there for many to enjoy. Everything about that process was difficult and without perseverance & patience, our situation would've been a lot worse...and it was already crazy, enough so that I get threats he'll write a screen play about our lives at that time. It won't be pretty. Me living in a dusty fixer upper in Bed Stuy with neighbors that thought the street was their daily night club, crime abound, a precious newborn & zero sleep? I was in rare form!
During New York Fashion Week last season, I met a stylist that told me how for the last 20 years he always kept pursuing his dream of becoming a successful stylist. He never said no to test photo shoots to build up the beautiful photography in his portfolio, which over time, led to him working with the most famous faces in the world and a spot on America's Next Top Model with Tyra Banks. He was so confident & had such clarity on how he achieved success. I will never forget it. Perseverance was the answer to his dreams and he was glowing.
A story from one of my favorite podcasts “The Accidental Creative” with Todd Henry , my ultimate productivity guru, really resonated with me. One day the guest, who is a film and television producer, was having dinner with accomplished friends, including Academy-nominated film makers. He stated, “The sum of the whole evening was...You definitely need a base line of talent..but beyond that it's all about perseverance. All around the table the conclusion was...If you put 2 actors in a room, 2 directors in a room, 2 writers in a room, 2 producers in a room, one of them has A Level Talent and B Level perseverance and the other has B Level talent and A Level perseverance. Our money is on the B talent and A perseverance guy every time. And that's just a cheesy cliché, that's actually based on real life...what these people have found in his careers.”
Slow and steady wins the race. Despite our modern society of instant gratification and wanting everything yesterday, it's so important to enjoy the journey and just don't give up. I was given this advice when I was informed by an intuitive energy healer I saw who shared--- I have been in a race with myself. It really did hit home because it was true. I see all the amazing work everyone is doing out there and I'd love to be at their pace, but it's not my journey right now. Where I am, is where I'm supposed to be. This newfound wake-up call has given me such a wonderful peace of mind. Acceptance allows me to enjoy the journey and not constantly rush towards the end goal.
How do you persevere in your life? What goals are you looking to achieve and what will it take to get there? One step and time, just don't give up. Living a life of dreams deferred is no fun. Just do it. Please share what you are up to.
Here are some highlights from the Spark Collective Workshop @ Thompson Square Studios. We had such a fantastic group of women join us for a very special evening. I am grateful.