Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Creativity Tips: Father Knows Best

When I graduated from the University of Missouri, my father gave me a note with this quotation from Calvin Coolidge:

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. The slogan "press on" has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.

I woke up this morning and thought, "Daddy was right."

It's so easy in today's instant-gratification world to expect immediate results, and be disappointed when we don't get them. But the wonderful thing is, with persistence, we can realize amazing results.

I'll give you a personal example tied to the lessons learned from my two years of exercising. Time matters. I am seeing dramatic shifts in my appearance, strength and flexibility -- and it feels like they just instantly happened! Last week, I didn't look like "this." Today, I do.

Of course, it didn't happen instantly. It took years. It took persistence. Who'd have thought?

Same thing with creative endeavors. I haven't written my Great American Novel yet because I haven't had the persistence to stick with it. Heck, I haven't even been persistent with my poetry -- publishing takes time. You have to look up names and contact info, send it out in the right form, send it out again. And again. And again. I want a quick email and YES!

Yet, I know, the world is full of writers who sent their manuscripts out hundreds of times before hearing YES!

So, here's the thing. Unless -- until -- you stick with it, whatever it is for you, you have no idea what you might achieve. No idea how incredible your accomplishments can be. Start today by embracing the concept that you're in it for the long haul. Be persistent. Be determined.

Press on, my friends. Press on.

1 comment:

Hedy said...

Some wise person once said..."the difference between try and triumph is the "umph".