Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not: nothing is more common than unsuccessful men 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.—Calvin Coolidge
[one_half padding=”4px 10px 0 4px”]There are times when I am frustrated by the lack of audience here. I look at yesterday’s numbers for example, the lowest all month, and wonder what the hell I have to do to get people’s attention on a regular basis. I question why I bother getting up so damn early in the morning, seven days a week, to make sure the pictures and articles are all here for you first thing. The answer: determination. I’m not willing to accept failure. We’ll re-tool around the first of the year, re-format, and keep trying.
Determination is one of those traits that tends to make itself quickly noticeable on a person’s face. Watch Lionel Messi’s face as he’s taking the ball downfield and you’ll see determination; he’s not going to be satisfied until that ball is in the goal. Watch Jason Heyward’s face when he steps up to bat for the Cardinals, or whomever he ends up playing for next season; the ball is going to be hit. And have you seen Peyton Manning’s face when he’s forced out of the pocket by a defensive lineman? He has no intention of going down with that ball.
Sports are not the only place where one sees such determination on a face, though. Watch the dad trying to change the diaper of a wiggling infant while using the baby changing station in a public facility; that is determination. Look at the face of a young woman as she prepares for her first job interview after college; you’re seeing determination. Better yet, admire the face of a young child as they build they attempt to build that tower of blocks higher and higher; physics be damned, they are going to put the red one on the very top, even if they have to stand on someone else to do so.[/one_half]
[one_half_last padding=”4px 4px 0 10px”]Benjamin has always been a determined individual, no matter what he was doing. He hates to lose (you really don’t want to play Monopoly with him). He sets a goal and isn’t satisfied until he reaches it. I still remember those painfully early Saturday mornings on the soccer field when he was six. The coach finally had to take him out of the game because Ben had to score every time, and more often than not, he did, much to the dismay of the other team. He’s a U.S. Marine now, and that same determination shows on his face more than ever.
Determination is what moves the world forward; people who refused to give up even when facing insurmountable odds. The men who signed the Declaration of Independence were determined to form, “a more perfect union.” Lewis and Clark were determined to map out the wilderness West of the Mississippi River. Dr. Jonas Salk was determined to find a way to prevent polio from ruining so many lives. Sure, mistakes, miscalculations, and unexpected changes in condition can at times thwart the best of plans, but those who ultimately win pick themselves up, along with those around them, and keep moving forward.
I have a great number of concerns about the future for a host of reasons I won’t list at the moment; the obstacles we face are significant and the current game plan hasn’t worked as well as we’d hoped. I have been so incredibly tempted to just give up. Don’t worry, we won’t. We move forward, adjusting, changing, re-tooling, and maybe even tearing some things down so we can rebuild. My face is as set as Ben’s. Hmm, I wonder where he get it.[/one_half_last]