Six Ways to Practice The Art of Tenacity


“Let me tell you the secret that has led me to my goal. My strength lies solely in my tenacity.” - Louis Pasteur (1822-1895)

Louis Pasteur was a French biologist, microbiologist and chemist renowned for his discoveries of the principles of vaccination, microbial fermentation and pasteurization. When I think of tenacity, I think of Pasteur who required a huge amount of persistence and relentlessness in his research.

I need a bit of that.

One truth I know about me is I love to start things. My challenge is that I don’t have the tenacity to complete many of them. At first, I thought my abandoning projects in the middle of them was due to my strength of being a leaner which means I get bored very quickly.

As I thought about this a bit more, I realized boredom was not why I abandon projects. I just give up too soon if I don’t see immediate results. I don’t have the tenacity or persistence to stick to something. 

This is why I stopped doing my PhD., as I kept hearing one’s doctoral research paper would take five to seven years to complete. No way was I willing to be THAT tenacious!

I’ve decided to practice the art of tenacity. Here’s what I think will help me in that practice:

  1. Stay in touch with my ‘Why’ and the passion I feel for it. Be persistent in my purpose.
  2. Set clearer goals with timelines that are longer than I normally would schedule. This is setting the expectation I have for me.
  3. Surround myself with others who practice tenacity and can offer me their wisdom.
  4. Remind myself to leave the comfort zone I have of seeing fast results.
  5. Find an accountability buddy who is also working on a longer-term project.
  6. Adopt a sedulous attitude and take my own advice to “Feel the GULP and do it anyway.”

How do you stay in your game when you want to leave it?


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