Skip to main content
July 4, 2021 at 5:00 AM
perseverance quote.jpg


While I was driving today and attending “Automobile University”, the podcast I was listening to talked about which is better, to be resilient or to persevere? I haven’t really thought about perseverance or to persevere. I always went with the assumption that to be resilient is the “way to be”. The gentleman on the podcast posited that it’s better for a person to persevere than to be resilient. This was an interesting concept for me and made sense the more I thought about it. I think first of all we need to look at the difference between the 2 terms.


Resilience is defined as “An ability to recover from or adjust easily to misfortune or change” and Perseverance is defined as “The continued effort to do or achieve something despite difficulties, failure, or opposition.”

Resilience is defined as “An ability to recover from or adjust easily to misfortune or change”. Resiliency is the mental ability to recovery quickly from depression, illness or misfortune. The podcast talked about how resilience is more focused on our past, with a more negative connotation. What I got out of this is that when we think about our resiliency, it causes us to focus on what has happened to us in the past and our experiences, although we’ve overcome them, in all probability have come from a negative background. This is especially true when we look at the word “misfortune” in the definition above. I can’t think of very many misfortunes that are positive.

From the Harvard Business Review: “There is no doubt that resilience is a useful and highly-adaptive trait, especially in the face of traumatic events. However, it can be taken too far. For example, too much resilience could make people overly tolerant of adversity. At work, this can translate into putting up with boring or demoralizing jobs — and particularly bad bosses — for longer than needed. In addition, too much resilience can get in the way of leadership effectiveness and, by extension, team and organizational effectiveness. Multiple studies suggest that bold leaders are unaware of their limitations and overestimate their leadership capabilities and current performance, making them rigidly and delusionally resilient and closed off to information that could be imperative in fixing — or at least improving — behavioral weaknesses. While it may be reassuring for teams, organizations, and countries to select leaders on the basis of their resilience — who doesn’t want to be protected by a tough and strong leader? — such leaders are not necessarily always good for the group as a whole. For example, extreme resilience could drive people to become overly persistent with unattainable goals. Although we tend to celebrate individuals who aim high or dream big, it is usually more effective to adjust one’s goals to more achievable levels, which means giving up on others. Indeed, scientific reviews show that most people waste an enormous amount of time persisting with unrealistic goals, a phenomenon called the “false hope syndrome.” Even when past behaviors clearly suggest that goals are unlikely to be attained, overconfidence and an unfounded degree of optimism can lead to people wasting energy on pointless tasks.”

Perseverance is defined as “The continued effort to do or achieve something despite difficulties, failure, or opposition.”

Determination. Grit. Endurance. Patience. Indefatigableness. Interesting words, all connected to perseverance. Perseverance is a discipline—it's a day-by-day decision not to give up. Man, this brings to mind legendary coach and broadcaster Jimmy Valvano’s quote that says “Don’t give up, Don’t ever give up”. You have got to keep moving forward. If you are trying to accomplish a goal, don’t quit on yourself. You MUST stick to the plan! I believe perseverance is “future oriented”, this is evident in a goal you are working on. Can you overcome the setbacks that you will face? Yes! You will be able to persevere. As Scott Smith with Motivation to Move states “ Stand Up. Take a Step. Repeat”. He doesn’t say “Take a Leap from the highest mountain”. No, he’s talking about taking baby steps. They might not seem like much, but you got to keep moving forward. This reminds me of one of dad’s favorite poems that he had copies of:

Don't Quit

by Edgar A. Guest

When things go wrong, as they sometimes will,

When the road you're trudging seems all uphill,

When the funds are low and the debts are high,

And you want to smile but you have to sigh,

When care is pressing you down a bit -

Rest if you must, but don't you quit.

Life is queer with its twists and turns.

As everyone of us sometimes learns.

And many a fellow turns about when he

Might have won had he stuck it out.

Don't give up though the pace seems slow -

You may succeed with another blow.

Often the goal is nearer than it seems

To a faint and faltering man.

Often the struggler has given up when he

Might have captured the victor's cup.

And he learned too late when the night came down,

How close he was to the golden crown.

Success is failure turned inside out -

The silver tint of the clouds of doubt,

And when you never can tell how close you are,

It may be near when it seems afar;

So stick to the fight when you're hardest hit -

It's when things seem worst,

: You must not quit.

And as Zig Ziglar states: “You don’t have to be great to start, BUT you have to start to be great”. Do you have the grit, the guts, the determination to keep working towards our goals? Are you stuck in a rut? Do you need some clarity in what you would like to achieve?

I would love to go on that journey with you! I have 3 different time slots available that I would like to invite you to sign up for. I offer a complimentary strategy session where we can talk about your goals, your dreams, your passion on what you would like to change in your life. It doesn’t matter that I have faith in you and believe you can Face Everything And Rise, but do you have faith in yourself? Let me help you discover it!

Subscribe to our newsletter
Let's keep in touch!

Stay updated on our news and events! Sign up to receive our newsletter.