5 rules o f Persistence​

img_4881In life, you really have to get things done, not just for yourself but others. People count on you and believe in you. It can be selfish to dim your light when others draw inspiration from it.

  1. There is more than enough abundance to go around, so don’t discredit your ideas.
  2. The 100 days of rejection challenge.
  3. Plant seeds and have faith that they will yield results.
  4. A “no” never means never.
  5. Be confident because your mindset matters.

There is more than enough abundance to go around, so don’t discredit your ideas

No idea is stupid, it if is your divinely inspired thought then it belongs to you to tell the world about it. there have been many times where I came up with an idea, thought it was stupid and then just discarded it. Then a similar idea comes along and you think, wow I could have done that. For example, when I was a teenager I used to write novellas about historical figures and what they were like as teenagers. It was fiction but rooted in historical research. My favorite was about Jackie Kennedy Onassis, she was the same age as Martin Luther King Jr., and what if they had crossed paths? I made up friends and adventures, in which they learned valuable life lessons. It was set during World War II, a time when much changed about America and the world.  I realized when Lin Manuel Miranda wrote Hamilton a rap musical about Alexander Hamilton and added a twist on the story of the American revolution. Hamilton is loved by millions and its obvious Lin-Manuel Miranda didn’t think that his idea was too ridiculous to share.

The first lady of my small town recently reminds me of a Les Brown quote, don’t take your ideas with you to the graveyard. The richest place in the world in the graveyard they say, ideas that were never incubated, books that were never written, and courageous intentions that were never manifested. It’s chilling every time I hear this, a reminder of our own mortality.  Why not live out loud, be bold and make an impact on everything and everyone we encounter? I often say that we are celestial beings having a human experience. why not you? Why not put it out there, no one is going to steal your ideas and if they do, it will never be implemented the way you would do it. People have a hard enough time following through with their own plans let alone take the time to see a half baked version of what you’re doing through to completion.

I cannot emphasize enough the power of abundance, to think that someone will steal your idea or hate you for it, means you are operating from a place of lack. Abundance means plenty or a very large quantity of something. It is the innate tendency of nature to grow and become more. It is the tendency of the life force to produce more and create more of everything. To attract abundance into your life, you need to feel abundant. One way to do this is to halt self-deprecating humor, “I’m so broke” or “knowing my luck” jokes aren’t funny. I used to make fun of myself all the time for being “directionally challenged” I would get lost all the time. If the party started at 6, I’d get there at 8 after taking an unplanned detour through Canada. But I didn’t realize I was attracting this sort of thing into my life. Now I make a conscious effort to not joke about being late or getting lost. Not knowing where things are is a simple fix, look at a map. I completely shocked my mom when I could describe how to get somewhere she hadn’t been to in a long time but I was often in the area. “Oh yeah just take 94 east to 696 west to Schoenherr Rd.” I’m proud of you she said in awe.

The 100 days of rejection challenge

I recently stumbled upon a Ted Talk by Jia Jiang and he talked about getting over being rejected. In life, we face a lot of rejection, in love, career and work, and simple lifestyle things. These are the 100 days of Rejection Therapy that started it all. His goal was to desensitize himself from the pain of rejection and overcome fears (check out his TED talk). This reminded me of an old adage, ask and you shall receive. If you want something, go after it. but sometimes we forget how badly it hurts when things don’t work out. The pain, the embarrassment, the effort and what feels like wasted time. Often we regret that we tried at all. I felt this when I ran for a vacancy on the city council I wasn’t selected. It wasn’t my first attempt at running for office but it stung like rejection. Kind of like the time I told Steve Starnes I had a crush on him in middle school and he flat out said he didn’t like me. These things suck.  But if we really want to live boldly we embrace these rejections and move on. Develop a thicker skin.

Jiang spent 100 days asking for random things and getting rejected in the process. In the west, we tend to live in a world of instant gratification. When the reality is things are often hard-fought and don’t come easily. Rejection should be something we all learn from, its okay to be a bit crestfallen. But when you’re done licking your wounds evaluate what can be done better. People always say try again, but I say take inventory. Now that you have tried, is this what you really want? Or is there something that aligns better with your visions? Analyzing your goals after a defeat makes you more certain of what you want and what you don’t want. Keeping a positive momentum going in the process.

Plant seeds and have faith in a high yield for your harvest

Maybe you feel like you already have developed a thick skin due to rejection. and you truly believe in yourself. But you aren’t seeing results. You can’t reap if you don’t sow, and you’ve been waiting so long now you’re thinking, “where is my harvest?” It’s coming. Faith without works is dead. We must hold strong to our faith because it is the very thing that leads us towards the things we hope for. It’s the thing that keeps us moving forward, even if that movement seems slow and uneventful. Hard work and anxiety suffer from the law of diminishing returns. In economics, diminishing returns is the decrease in the output of a production process. As the amount of one factor of production is incrementally increased the amounts of all other factors of production stay constant. That’s a scientific way of saying the more you put in the more results you will see. But the way I see it, you have to go for a thing put everything into it and then just let go.

The things that I dont constantly dwell on are the ones that come the fastest. I have applied for programs, grants and jobs and the ones that I worry about every day “I wonder if I’ll get it”, never materialized. Plant that seed, and water it. There is a flurry of activity happening below the surface. So don’t worry, your plants are sprouting and working their way through the dirt. The blessings are on the way. Just keep radiating positive vibrations.      

A “no” never means never

Often it seems no is the most discouraging word in the English language. It shatters hopes and dreams is a source of insecurity and discontent. We will often hold back on doing something or taking an action because of fear of hearing those dreaded words, “NO”. But no does not have to be the equivalent of a dream killer. It can be a means of exposing us to a fresher perspective. A renewed zeal or means of arriving at a different strategy. I often take a no to mean, try harder or convince me. Its as if the person denying the request is saying “No why should I approve this request?” or “whats in it for me?” 

Tying in the concept of 100 days of rejection, Jiang Jin once asked a random person if he could plant a flower in their back yard. They said no, but when Jiang asked why not, the man replied  that his dog would dig it up. The dog destroyed everything in his back yard. The man felt obligated to help Jiang so he told him to go across the street to his neighbor Susan because she loved flowers. Proof that when one door closes another one opens.  

Confidence matters 

you might as well go after what you want, so why not do it like you mean it? Play at life like it plays out in your head. You see your dreams vividly so why not live your life that way? 

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