On Persistence and Self-Care

by Amy on September 16, 2010

In her post titled Just Show Up, life coach Ann Mehl shares a story about her friend James Maddock. A talented singer/songwriter, early in his career Columbia Records signed him then shortly “dumped” him when his record didn’t sell. Ten years later, she overheard his music playing at her local Starbucks.

People Give Up Too Easy

I think people give up too easy. I have a weight loss client, for example, who’s gaining weight. When I asked her why, her response was “I don’t know, I think I’m just lazy.”

I disagree.

I think that 100 % percent of the time, the reason we give up has everything do with the way we think. We tell ourselves things that make us want to give up. Things like:

• I’m just lazy.
• I can’t do it.
• I have really bad grammar.
• I’m too old.
• I’m too fat.
• I’m too ugly.
• I’m too pretty.
• It’s just not working.
• I don’t have enough money.
• I don’t have enough time.
• I don’t know how.

I’m reading a book called Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill. (You can get a free digital copy here.) First published in 1938, the author was commissioned by Andrew Carnegie to write it. In this book, Hill interviews over 500 of the nations wealthiest men at the time to uncover the secret to their success. He finds a very specific formula that has nothing to do with good looks, family connections, luck, etc. and everything to do with mindset.

And while I’ve been around the block enough to know there are plenty of external circumstances that hinder our efforts, I think it’s easy to use our failures and setbacks as evidence for why we are uniquely destined to never reach our dreams.

Successful People Are Persistent.

According to Hill:

“More than five hundred of the most successful men this country has ever known told the author their greatest success came just one step beyond the point at which defeat had overtaken them. Failure is a trickster with a keen sense of irony and cunning. It takes great delight in tripping one when success is almost within reach.”

I’ll say it again. It’s not your race. It’s not your bank account. It’s not your past. It’s not your family history. It’s not your address. It’s not your bra size. It’s not your husband. It’s not your kids. It’s not your lack of training.

It’s Your Thinking.

To be persistent, you have think persistent.

In business, the crappy thought might be:

“It takes money to make money and I don’t have any.”

In weight loss, the crappy thought might be:

“Women in my family are just big boned.”

Here’s My Advice:

1) Figure out what you want. (What lights your fire? What brings you passion?)
2) Go for it. (Just keep putting one foot in front of the other.)
3) Watch how you talk to yourself. (Don’t believe your crappy thoughts.)
4) Turn your crappy thoughts into empowering ones.


It takes money to make money becomes “I have the resourcefulness to figure out how to get what I need in order to grow my business.”


Women in my family are just big boned becomes “I will never make excuses to stuff myself silly again”

What Does Persistence Have to do with Self-Care?

I think this post is about self-care that goes beyond bubble baths and pedicures and pushes us to take an honest look at how we talk to ourselves. It asks us to care enough about our dreams to fight for them. And to do this we have to disbelieve anything we might tell ourselves that gets in the way. This, in my opinion, is the ultimate version of self-care – The not-so-easy version but the version with the greatest rewards.

Here’s a final quote from Think and Grow Rich:
“Remember, no more effort is required to aim high in life, to demand abundance and prosperity, then is required to demand misery and poverty.”

So… What do you think? Does persistence have anything to do with self-care in your opinion? Please share your thoughts by leaving a comment!

Want More?

To sign-up for her e-course titled I Don’t Need Your Approval! How to Overcome Your Inner Approval Addict, click here!

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