The world is full of people who started something but didn’t finish. They had a good idea, but life got in the way. They ran out of energy, motivation or simply lost interest.
Starting something is easy. You have the idea, the excitement, the confidence. But finishing? That’s hard. It requires discipline, endurance, and resilience. It demands that you push through challenges, setbacks, and obstacles. And pushing through mud isn’t as glamorous or rewarding as dreaming about the result.
I used to be a dreamer.
I dreamt (and started!) so many things that you wouldn’t even believe it — languages, businesses, startups, bodybuilding, running, DIY, travel, writing. Sometimes, I thought that “How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big” should not be the title of Scott Adams’ book but rather the title of my life (minus the big win, of course).
And yet, somehow, I managed to get everything I wanted. Not everything, but, you know, all the things that would make a man happy.
The secret? Persistence.
It’s not that I’m particularly smart, or talented, or lucky. It’s that I’ve managed to keep going when everyone else gave up. And I learned to enjoy the process, not just the results.
Solving programming puzzles felt like play to me, so when I started applying to Junior Software Engineer roles, and there was zero response for the first few months, it didn’t bother me as much. I kept having fun and wrote code every day.
But what if you hate it? What if the only reason for grinding with clenched teeth is the reward that shines in the end?
Then you’re doing it wrong.
You need to find something that you truly enjoy, something that makes you lose track of time, something that brings you joy and purpose. That’s the key to sustaining your persistence.
So, if you want to succeed at anything, don’t just dream about it. Start working on it. Keep going. Keep pushing. Keep showing up. Because persistence is what will predict your success.
And if you’re feeling down, remember this: the tortoise always beats the hare. Slow and steady wins the race. And even though you might not cross the finish line first, you’ll still get there eventually. Just as long as you don’t give up.