Patience has never been my strong suit. That’s why, after 24 years, I finally named my primary fencing sword Patience.
My Sword Is Named Patience
There is a depth of double-meaning in this revelation I am sharing here.
This is important because it is a reminder that it takes not only perseverance — but patience to get anywhere with anything. When I was healing after getting hit by the car, I persevered and worked my ass off to recover as quickly as possible — and though I was not patient enough for the timelines my doctors gave me — I employed patience to do the necessary work.
Despite being unathletic, overweight, and otherwise unbalanced — I determined I would not suck at fencing. While I am by no means one of the best at my game — I have built a great deal of skill through perseverance and patience.
Yet I need to remind myself about this as I am focusing my energies to take my brand to the next level. The results of employing the marketing company I’ve hired are not yet making much of a difference in my sales and earnings. However, it’s only been a month. All things being equal, that’s not a lot of time to get the ball rolling how and where I desire for it to roll.
I need to work on balancing my perseverance and patience. Maybe a look back will offer some insight.
Perseverance and patience to recover
After getting hit by a car crossing the street 21 years ago, I had a LOT of damage that required recovery. The doctors were optimistic — but they told me it could take 1–3 YEARS before I would be walking again; they were uncertain how much use of my right arm would recover from the nerve damage sustained by my stretched brachial plexus, and; I might never be able to fence again.
I took this in and decided that I didn’t agree. Nope, I was going to recover faster and more completely.
To do that, I applied a lot of perseverance. Every single time a physical or occupational therapist worked with me we had a conversation that tended to go like this:
Them: Does that hurt?
Them: Do you want to stop?
I knew that if I persevered through the pain and discomfort it would be easier next time. Every single step of the way I pushed as hard as I could.
As much as I was impatient to recover — I also knew it wasn’t going to be instantaneous. There was a LOT of damage to be fixed. But I knew — without a doubt — it could be done faster if I applied perseverance without becoming impatient or trying to find shortcuts that may have seemed great at the time — but were ineffective in the long run.
Within a year, I was almost fully recovered. I was walking without the expected limp, recovered 98% of the use of my arm, and today — unless I show you my impressive scar collection — you’d never know how badly broken I was.
Ultimately, the lesson here is perseverance and patience can get you where you desire to go.
A new day, a new challenge
When it comes to getting my brand out there and increasing my sales, there are some limitations I must be patient about and accept.
For example — I can’t make anyone buy my books. I can beg, plead, cajole, and otherwise request that you explore and maybe buy my work. But I can’t make you buy it.
Along this line, when it comes to my nonfiction, I can’t make anyone read my articles. No matter where I post them — I can’t force anyone to read them.
This is why I have hired a marketing company to help me do this. They are creating a new campaign to help me get out there more and raise my sales. This is important — because I recognize that I can’t do this part on my own. I need the help to get where I desire for this to be.
In the meantime, I can do my part to promote myself and share all that I do. And focus on what IS inside my control. I can apply perseverance and patience towards my focus and the parts that ARE in my control.
That includes writing and editing, mostly. To meet my goal of publishing 6 books during this year I need to write and edit them.
That, in combination with other actions necessary to improve my life, is where I need to be focused. By persevering, I can manifest the life I desire to. But without patience, I risk getting frustrated when the results aren’t showing yet.
This is where the danger zone exists. Because if I allow the frustration to take ahold of me, I risk sabotaging myself and/or doubting myself. That’s an unnecessary hardship.
Resisting the doubt
When it comes to doubt, I have an uncanny ability for locating it. What’s more, doubt can be a product of both internal and external factors.
The internal doubt comes from issues with my self-esteem, belief in abilities, depression, mindfulness (or lack thereof), and other factors. Am I really a decent enough writer to make a living from this? Can I take my mindfulness and conscious reality creation blogging and turn it into a career? Do I have a brand I can sell? Am I worthy and deserving of this or just fooling myself?
Then there are outside doubts. I’m human — so as much as I strive not to care what and how other people think of me — I still do. Thus, when people — often from a place of caring — suggest I need a better back-up plan or remind me how few authors are full-time successes — it has an impact. Whether I like it or not.
This is where perseverance and patience come in. They are outstanding, amazing tools I can use to help me resist the doubts. Both within and without.
Part of why I meditate daily is to stay centered and be present and mindful. That, in turn, empowers me and powers my ability to resist my doubts.
What’s more, perseverance and patience help me work with the lack of a quick fix. It took time to build what I have — it will take time to build new things, too.
This is why I am working with some new practices — maintaining a daily checklist of to-dos, for example — to keep on task. That gives me a gauge for my perseverance and patience.
I believe in my brand
Finally — I believe that this is what I am most meant to do with my life. No, it’s not an easy path. But this is the path that’s right for me. I’m a writer, editor, voice artist, world-builder, and I’m only just beginning to get my brand out there to the world at large.
Yes, I need to have perseverance and patience to make this fly. I need to believe in myself, my abilities, and all the ancillary matters attached to that.
Also, equally important, I need to acknowledge that I am worthy and deserving of this. This is who I am and what I do — and I can be successful at it. There’s nothing I need to prove and nobody but me that I need to be.
I believe in my brand. With perseverance and patience, I will achieve a life worthy of me. That’s what I am here to do.
And so are you.
Thank you for being part of my ongoing journey, for joining me, and for inspiring me and my craft.
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Thank you for reading. I am MJ Blehart. I write about mindfulness, conscious reality creation, positivity, my creative process, and similar life lessons.
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Originally published at https://www.mjblehart.com on January 9, 2021.