Philippians 3:12-14 Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect; but I press on to make it my own because Christ Jesus has made me His own. Brethren, I do not consider that I have made it my own; but one thing I do, forgetting what lies behind and straining forward on what lies ahead. I press on towards the goal for the prize for which I am called heavenwards.
I believe we have all at one point or another set goals with the intention of achieving them within a time-frame, right? Like many people maybe you started out doing great, full of energy and strong but after some time that drive died out and you had trouble getting motivated again. Then this is for you.
You are not the only one struggling with that. So many people are stuck in a similar vicious cycle. They simply find it hard to keep pressing on towards their goals. So many people have gone on special diets and work-out aiming to lose weight. Yes, they may have lost the weight as they intended but gained it back after some time. The big deal becomes refocusing and making a new start over again, no matter how small it may be. Most of us fail to remember that failure is an opportunity to begin again more intelligently and with more strength as Henry Ford said. Have you ever known that failure is simply success turned inside out?
One of the most perfect examples of perseverance is Thomas Edison. He failed a thousand and one times in his experiments to discover the electric light bulb but he never thought of giving up. And still when he made it he could not articulate the unsuccessful experiments as failure. All he said was that he had discovered a thousand and one ways that could not work. Maybe you too have tried so many ways without making it, you might have tried all the possibilities that you could think of but to no avail. Just remember you have found out all the many ways that could not work and you are about to get the right one. Keep pressing on. A time is coming when nature will conform with fate to give you the resources that you need to achieve your goals.
Well, then how do we go about it?
First know your goal and start over by writing it down. Research shows that writing down a goal is a mental process of committing yourself to it. Keep in mind that the bigger your goal the more you have to work to get to it.
Second, make your goal specific. Vague goals make our planning and implementation harder. A good goal should define and make clear what it is exactly that you want to achieve. If your goal for instance is to participate in a 42km marathon, it will be totally unrealistic for a person who has not been involved in it before to target running the whole race on the first day of practice. It makes sense better when you break down your preparation for the race to smaller bits. For example, you can do 12 km on the first day and thereafter increase by 2km each day. Sooner or later you will discover that every small bit you achieve prepares you and motivates you to face the next. Actually, success is equated to just making progress in the desired direction.
Good, we all listen to music and do understand the role it plays in us. Music has for so long been known to open doors in our hearts and shape our lives and value systems.
Mandisa is one of the most inspirational artists of our time. The lyrics of her song ‘press on’ are not only philosophical but also inspirational by design.
She says: when I am alone, when I am afraid. When I have had all I can take; losing my grip, I start to slip away. When I can hear the voice of doubt inside my head screaming loud…. I will follow, I will press on even when the walk feels long. Your hands (God’s) hold me forever through the broken, through the victory…I will praise you through it all and run harder ‘till the race is done. I am going to press on… no turning back.
The lyrics above present to us a person in a serious cycle of loneliness and fear but still finds a reason to keep moving forward and not turn back no matter what comes her way. It is obvious that we will go through hard situations (we all do)- we will be betrayed by close friends, we will face financial constraints, we will look like we are naturally failures, people will discourage us and talk mad about us to the point we may feel like giving up- but just having that never-say-die attitude is more important. Remember if people aren’t gossiping you, talking mad at you nor criticizing you, then probably you are not influencing them. There is enough light at the end of the tunnel as R. Kelly says in his inspirational song ‘the storm is over.’
“When you reach an obstacle, turn it into an opportunity. You have the choice. You can overcome and be a winner, or you can allow it to overcome you and be a loser. The choice is yours and yours alone. Refuse to throw in the towel. Go that extra mile that failures refuse to travel. It is far better to be exhausted from success than to be rested from failure.” — Mary Kay
A man’s favorite donkey fell into a deep precipice. He couldn’t pull it out no matter how hard he tried. He therefore decided to bury it alive. He poured soil onto the donkey from above. The donkey would then feel the load, shake it off, and step on it. More soil was poured. It shook it off and stepped up. The more the load was poured, the higher it rose. By noon, the donkey was grazing in green pastures.
-Obstacles are sure to come, we should learn to manipulate them to our own benefit. They cannot grow but we can grow.
In his bestselling book ‘Going for the Max’ retired U.S senator Max Cleland encourages us by saying we can only go for the max in life if we are ready to move forward and never ever give up. Yes, we can take rest if we must but never should we think of giving up. NEVER.
“Even a rock moves on” – Anthony Liccione.
“Press on. Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.” — Ray Kroc
“It is better to risk starving to death than surrender. If you give up on your dreams, what’s left?” –– Jim Carrey