Sunday, June 21, 2009

So How Long Can You Last?

To the end
A quick exit is beneficial in some aspects of life but generally it is about staying power. When I reflect upon my forays into various ventures – business or personal – successful ventures include intensity, timing and duration. In other words the ability to stick around and make it happen can make all the difference.

At the most trivial level there is the ever-present desire to lose a few pounds. I latch on to fads or gimmicks to help achieve my goal but soon find myself drifting back to old habits. The ability and motivation to sustain a fad is limited. Fads promise a short cut and instant gratification (or maybe it is the marketing), which sucks me in. Predictably the initial enthusiasm fads fast and I am back contemplating my next move.

In a business venture the same concept applies. The draw of quick returns or a slick marketing gimmick gets the ball rolling. You get excited about the venture; invest some time and money to make it happen. You kick off the venture with high expectations and … Slowly but steadily you lose interest, spend less and less time on this venture and shortly it is history. Sound familiar?

But some things stick. You start and continue to invest in it – a vocation, exercise routine, business venture or a lifestyle component. Why are some things sustainable whereas others aren’t?

Passion! What sticks, what is lasting and what works for you is predicated by your passion for it. On the interest scale, at one end is curiosity and at the other end is a strong desire. Passion does not have to be an all-consuming desire – it could be a strong interest, which is good enough to make it happen. But a passing curiosity does not have much chance for success.

To separate the big rocks from the pebbles – I spend time analyzing the situation before acting upon it. A little due diligence clarifies for me the reality of success. Is this opportunity aligned with my life goals and personal attributes? Why am I gravitating towards this option? Is this a short cut or a long-term life style change? Is this a long-term sustainable effort?

Nothing wrong in exploring your options, but ultimately success is finding and investing in the options where you can last long enough to reap the benefits.

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