Developing Staying Power
One of my favourite quotes of all time is Robert Schuller’s “Tough times never last but tough people do”, and I say these words to myself every time.
Have you ever wondered how some people are completely ruined by a business failure, while some others face the same difficulty, recover, and go on to live a Value-Adding Life? History is full of stories of people who have overcome difficult seasons and have moved on to accomplish feats we still celebrate today. In most of these cases, there’s nothing particularly special about these people who manage to come out on top; they simply developed the ability to persevere.
I like the story of a young Nigerian, Jason Njoku. He is the co-founder of IrokoTV – a mobile entertainment, and internet TV platform. Before the success of Iroko TV, Jason had struggled and failed at different enterprises. Between 2005 and 2010, he had started a blog network, a T-shirt business, and a web design company which were all unsuccessful. Frustrated, he moved back home into his mother’s house to start all over. He was down and out but refused to give up. Sticking to his dream of establishing an entertainment empire, he started a YouTube channel in the United Kingdom to showcase Nollywood movies which unfortunately failed too.
He later returned to Nigeria where he built close relationships with local film producers and founded the startup. With an initial investment of £90,000 from his friend and business partner, Sebastian Gotter, IrokoTV got a boost that marked the beginning of its success story. Later in 2011, Iroko Partners received $8-million investment from an American hedge fund, Tiger Global. In the same year, Iroko TV recorded annual revenue of $1.3 million. According to Njoku, the business has attracted up to $40 million in investment funding from the local and foreign investors. He once said “I make more mistakes than I make good choices. My only saving grace is that the choices that I make are better and more significant.”
One thing that sticks out from Jason Njoku’s story is his ability to persevere in tough times. Simply put, perseverance is to be persistent in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success. I call it Staying Power or Stickability.
Like Roger Crawford once said; “Being challenged in life is inevitable, being defeated is optional.” I.e we will all face challenges in life, we will have push backs, things won’t work well but we ultimately determine if we’ll be defeated or not. This is a function of our ability to persevere
Let me share 3 things you need to do to improve your Staying Power.
- Don’t Run from Challenges
It is a natural human instinct to shy away from difficulties but experience has shown that people who face their challenges and push ahead through tough times more often than not, end up overcoming the odds against them. The truth is, the more you face your challenges the more you grow the muscle that helps you push through. I encourage you today, don’t run from challenges. Instead, pick up that new skill, sign up for that new role at work, accept new tasks and face them with a commitment to succeed at it. That way, you train yourself to adapt to tough situations.
- Do Something Outside Your Comfort Zone
I recently came across a quote by the American author, Neale Donald Walsch. He said; “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” These words have continued to resonate in my mind. Merriam Webster defines comfort zone as “the level at which one functions with ease and familiarity.” It is a state of mind in which we are relaxed and in control of our environment, experiencing low level of stress and risk. To develop our staying power, we need to step out of our comfort zone and commit to activities that will stretch us. For example, if you’re an introverted person, not comfortable with networking – You can commit to meeting and building a relationship with one new person every month. This will help you get out of your comfort zone.
- Build Your Faith
For me, this is definitely the most important tip. My faith teaches me that “All things work together for good”. These words give me the strength to face anything life throws at me. You see at the core, life is spiritual and the more we build up our conviction in God, the more we arm ourselves with the ability to persevere through any tough time.
I usually tell myself, “If I give up on “ME”, my failure is guaranteed. Think about this the next time you feel like giving up.
Remember, You Have Only One Life to Live, MAKE IT COUNT.