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The Perseverance Circle to Success

All of us would agree that to achieve a high level of success in any worthwhile goal requires that we stick with it and persevere.  Perseverance can be difficult as we have discussed before, many obstacles can get in our way.  However the Perseverance Circle shows the importance both of support from others and our own actions.

Perseverance CircleLets say we have decided to take up a new activity, or we have found a cause that we feel strongly about.  We get started learning a new skill, or we want to find a way to cure a disease.  At first we are excited and put a lot of energy into the activity.  We may make some progress, when support comes and encourages us to continue.

As we continue we gain more knowledge and take more action by practicing our new skill.  The more action we take the better our skills become.  The better our skills become the more passionate we are and the more we want to learn and to do better.

The more we learn the more we take action and practice.  The more practice, our skills and passion grow from these new found skills.  The circle is in motion, and with the support of friends and family every step of the way (knowledge, action, skills, passion) our perseverance pays off in success.  Your personal success may be found in your home and family relationships, in your job or education, in a hobby that we have or in a service to your community.  No matter where it is, it is likely that you had great support along the way and you stuck with it long enough to be good or even great at your new found skill.

One final note on skills and passion for young adults (or even older folks).   We hear people talk about what they will do for a career when they grow up and some will tell them to follow their passion.  Then of course we might say I am not passionate about anything.  If you have ever felt that way, start something that you can develop skills in and the better you get at the activity – your passion will grow and you may have just found a skill that may lead you to a career.  But only if you have perseverance.

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Helping children succeed through perseverance

imagesAll adults have goals and so do children.  The child’s goal may not seem to have obstacles as large as our own – but they are obstacles nonetheless.   Helping children reach their goals through perseverance may also require that we help them to understand 4 unseen obstacles that get in the way of both children and adults.

Let’s begin with a goal a child may have of wanting to be able to ride a bike with their friends.  At the moment though they do not know how to ride and they may be getting very discouraged about not being able to ride.  The quick answer is – they need to practice.  But there are four things that may block them, that we can help them understand and overcome.

  1. They have not set a date to reach their goal of riding their bike.  Not setting a goal with a deadline can be a deterrent.  There have been many times that children in our school who need to learn to jump rope – have only accomplished the skill the night before their demonstration.
  2. The fear of failure, or even of success.  Fear is one of the main reasons that many do not reach their goal.  For children and bike riding it may be fear of getting hurt, or not being as good as their friends.  It may be fear of the amount of work required or the perseverance needed.
  3. In line with fear is also the looking in the past and believing we will have the same results.  Skills that we tried to learn in the past that did not come easily or we gave up on may haunt us and those failures become our reality.  If we hold onto those fears, we may resent not getting it quickly and be very ready to give up soon.
  4. Finally not staying focused, boredom, or losing site of what we want – to be able to ride our bikes with our friends, may keep us from reaching our goal.

All of these require that we persevere.  Perseverance is steady, goal-oriented persistence, despite challenges or obstacles.  Helping our children to see how to use perseverance to overcome these common obstacles will be a great lesson for life.

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Perseverance to Achieve Success

imagesAll of us want to be successful.  Success means different things to different people.  Therefore goals are different for every individual.  Thinking of our goal and then working on it so that we can achieve it almost always requires that we find and use perseverance.

Have you ever thought about success outside of “What do you want to be when you grow up?”.  Helping our children see that they can control their destiny and empower them with the hope of being successful – in their own eyes will also help them to be happy.

Beyond what they want to be when they grow up, they may also consider what success would look like in their future home and family.  Do they want to live by the ocean or in a city?  Do they want to have a family with children?  They will need perseverance to meet those goals.

How will success look in giving back to the community?  Do they want to run for public office or be president one day?  Would they like to work with animals or the environment?  What would success look like in their impact on the community.  They will need perseverance to meet those goals.

How will success look in their hobbies and recreation?  Do they want to learn to ride horses or fly fish?  Would they like to be a pilot or design clothes?  Whatever they choose to do for fun will help them feel successful.   They will need perseverance to meet those goals.  

Showing our children how to stick with a goal will help them for the rest of their life.

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Gift of Character: Perseverance – The Definition

Word of monthEach month we will discuss a life skill with all of our students. This month the word is Perseverance.  This word will be defined in the following ways for our students.

Young students: Perseverance means: When the work gets tough, I don’t give up!

Older students: Perseverance means:  Steady, goal-oriented persistence, despite challenges or obstacles.

Each age group has a worksheet that parents can use to continue the discussion at home with their children, and one for adults to allow them to think more deeply about the skill and how it applies to them. Would you like to receive the worksheet? Stop by our studio at 133 Gibralter Avenue in Annapolis, MD and tell us the age of your child. We will give you a worksheet and invite you to watch Mr. Joe discuss the word with the students in class.  You can also follow our discussions here on this website.

If you would like to become a member of Balanced Life Skills, come TRY CLASSES FOR FREE.   We are not your typical after school activity, in fact we are an education center, working with our students on physical skills along with empowering families with compassion, awareness and respect – creating a culture of peace – through the martial arts.  We believe in every child and will build their confidence.  Balanced Life Skills serves the community and encourages each student to do the same.

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The Biggest Trust Questions

The two big questions we all have to answer in regard to trust are as follows:

Who do you trust?

Who trusts you?

Most of us will quickly name the person we trust. We trust them because they have been dependable, they keep their word to us, they have been available for us when we needed them. For most young people they recognize that they really trust their parents.

As a parent or an educator, maintaining that ‘trustworthiness’ is the key to maintaining a connection with any student or child.  If they come to believe that they are not able to trust us, the broken connection can be devastating to the young person. In fact they may go through their life with a belief that they can not and should not trust anyone. That is a very lonely existence.

Answering “Who trusts me?” really opens the opportunity to examine ourselves. We have a responsibility of keeping our promises, living up to our word and the values of our family. When we demonstrate our “being on the “team” of our family, both our personal trust of others on the team and their trust in us, continues to grow. We demonstrate our team spirit by building our trustworthiness with others.

Repeat after me:

I am trustworthy.

I keep my promises.

I keep my word.

I am worthy of the trust others place in me.

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