If you refuse to quit - you will succeed. We have all heard this basic advice that persistence is your key to success and making your dreams come true. It is your ability to remain committed to your goals, dreams, and aspirations despite many obstacles along the way. Persistence involves applying steady effort to your goals in spite of any difficulty or discouragement.

Putting a continuous effort toward your goals is very important. However, when you are pursuing big goals, like losing weight, overcoming emotional or stress eating, or moving beyond depression or sadness, it can be easy to feel like giving up. Your path to success may seem quite long and even overwhelming at times. We all hate to hear it, but there is no super-easy path to triumph. However, by learning how to strengthen your ability to persist, you can achieve great success.

Consider the idea that perseverance is not something that you are born with, but a skill that you can nurture and develop. To help you develop a solid life-changing decision to keep going no matter what until get you to your goal, follow the tried-and-true tips below.

The Big Picture
Changing your weight or eating habits, learning to cope with emotions or stress, or overcoming depression is a decision that requires you rearrange your life in a major way. The first action step you can take is to develop a long-term vision of how you want to live your life and the large-scale goals that you want to achieve. Write your overall goal down and fill in the details, draw your concept on paper, or create a visual picture board of you living your dream. Taking these actions will develop the potential and possibility of your new life. Encourage your new potential to grow by feeling yourself already living this wonderful new life. Each time you come back to your big picture, you strengthen the bond between you and the potential of your new life. While your potential may grow and evolve, it is essentially unchanging. As such, it serves to keep you anchored to a solid foundation for success, no matter what obstacles you encounter along your journey.

The Little Picture
To turn your big picture ideas into physical reality, it is necessary that you break down your vision into smaller, achievable, daily action steps. Chunking down your overall goal into doable activities helps prevent the feeling of overwhelm or hopelessness. It also moves you beyond wishful thinking. While your big picture goal remains solid and unchanging, revise your daily action steps regularly to meet your changing needs.

Take Action
Decide to take action every single day. This keeps your attention and energy focused on your goal, places your needs and desires on the top of your daily priority list, and allows motivation to expand. If your level of persistence is low, choose any small, doable action that comes to mind. Pick something easy that will allow you to feel successful immediately. When you choose a doable action, follow through, and achieve success, you feel good. When you feel good, you are more likely to stay motivated and keep going. If you cannot think of where to start, step back and review your big picture. Taking action includes simple, yet highly effective strategies like envisioning yourself successful in your goal, giving yourself an encouraging pep talk, or writing down all the reasons your dream is important to you.

Be Flexible
When some plan or action does not work, be prepared to adjust your course. Stay committed to your original destination, but experiment with finding a new way to get to where you wanted to go. Perhaps one path turned out to be a dead end, but look around and see if there is another path. Be flexible and try new techniques and strategies to get where you want to go.

Focus on Your Accomplishments
Keep a checklist of all the successful, wonderful things you did today. Learning to focus on your efforts and accomplishments gets you where you are going. Chart your achievements. If you do not have a tracking process, you cannot see how far you have come. And if you can't see that you are making progress, you are more likely to quit. Develop daily success lists to keep you motivated. The more monitoring you do and feedback you give yourself, the more successful you will be.

Celebrate your achievements often. If you wait to celebrate until you have done it all, you may never get there.

One Day at a Time
What is one thing you can do here and now that will move you one step closer to your goal? Start from exactly where you are in this moment and be willing to take one step at a time. I once found a humorous quote from a "Deep Thoughts" greeting card that reads, "If you ever teach a yodeling class, probably the hardest thing is to keep the students from just trying to yodel right off. You see, we build to that." It is human nature to want instant results. However, your success is a journey. Gain strength from your big picture, and bring that strength into an action that helps build your persistence. What is one action that you can take in this now moment that will keep you on track and moving forward? You don't have jump off a cliff or make a super-human effort. Instead, be willing to be exactly where you are right now, and take the action that is right for right now.

Think of persistence as a muscle that needs training. The next time you hear that little voice in your head saying, "I give up" just remember that that one more try coupled with the actions above might just be enough for you to achieve the success you want and deserve!

Author's Bio: 

Dr. Annette Colby, RD can help you take the pain out of life, turn difficult emotions into joy, release stress, end emotional eating, and move beyond depression into an extraordinary life! Annette is the author of Your Highest Potential and has the unique ability to show you how to spark an amazing relationship with your life! Visit www.LovingMiracles.com
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