“Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan 'press on' has solved and will always solve the problems of the human race.” - Calvin Coolidge, the 30th president of the United States.
I hibernated from the blogosphere exactly two years ago. I hibernated not because I did not have amazing stories to share but because I was waiting for the manifestations of more miracles before I would share to bless and to inspire as I only write proven and practicable non-fiction.
At this time of the year when new resolutions need to be pursued with tenacity, the idea to write on the subject comes as a welcoming idea. The subject also depicts the victory I had over a challenge after years of pursuit. Be inspired as you read on…
I was born in Nigeria and I had lived in the country all my life until December 2008 when I migrated to United Kingdom. Before then, I had wanted to travel abroad since I was a child (I honestly do not know where the desire for success, freedom and adventure came from, I must have been born with it.) but all my efforts were futile until then especially because I had a very humble background. My dream was not to travel abroad, rather, travelling abroad was the key to my dream and since my dream was big enough, I was prepared to do whatever it would take to attain the objective. The desire was so strong that I secretly sold some properties of my parents without their consent (and I am ashamed to share that I was prepared to sell more at the time) to elope to Europe with some daring friends via Sahara Desert at 15+! The plan did not work, but I remained undeterred. After secondary school, I proceeded to the university. While in the university, I also tried severally to travel abroad illegally but the plans were unsuccessful. I then resolved to go via the legal route. In 1998, I stepped into an embassy to apply for visa for the first time in my life and I was refused. Over the later years I tried with several other embassies in different visa categories but I was unsuccessful in all occasions. After graduation, I took up a job and I kept trying but was unsuccessful still. I went back to school for a second degree and I kept at it with no success. After my second degree, I took up another job but still wanted to travel with no success. During the trying periods, I tasted defeat firsthand, got more knowledge on how it could not work (such that I even became a ‘travelling consultant’ to many at some point), I changed strategies and improvised many a times (I promise to share some details later), amongst other experiences and lessons. And finally in year 2008, after ten(10) long years of spending incalculable resources and painful denials via the legal route, I obtained a visa to United Kingdom. I have since relocated there and many great things have happened to me as a result of the migration that would never have happened had I given up on travelling abroad. Defeat is painful, but victory soothes - I have since forgotten all the challenges I went through while trying to migrate, they are now testimonies.
What is the meaning of life without aspirations? That is the first question that comes to mind when I think of the numerous reasons why ‘success-dependent’ goal(s) should never be relinquished. Man is prone to advance by nature (otherwise he will be static and if he is static, retrogression will inevitably set in and thereafter ‘spiritual’ death - even physical death in some cases). The cause of advancement is goal(s). The picture of victory oils persistence. And the taste of victory enhances further advancement(s). Such is the cycle for progress.
Persistence is an invincible force failure cannot resist for long. One of the stories that inspired me while growing up is that of Abraham Lincoln who through doggedness maximized his potentials. I encourage you to read more about him, however find below some of his heroic statistics:
Abraham Lincoln failed in business at 22 years old;
He was defeated in legislator election at 23 years old;
He failed in business again at 24 years old;
He lost his sweetheart at 26 years old;
He had a nervous breakdown at 27 years old;
He was defeated for speaker at 29 years old;
He also got defeated for elector at 31 years old;
At 34 years old, he was defeated for congress;
At the age of 46, he was defeated for senate;
At 47 years old, he was defeated for vice presidency;
He got defeated for senate again at 49 years old;
He finally won the battle at 51 years old when he was elected as president of the United States of America.
Persistence, indeed, is omnipotent.
Have you given up on goals that matter to you in times past? I charge you to re-strategize and re-try. Are you tired of pursuing an objective without success? Hold on, your efforts will eventually pay off if you persevere. Are you scared of pursuing that objective because of the fear of failure? Face your fears and tackle that challenge, it will eventually bow to your doggedness.
Year 2011 can be likened to a new canvas, ensure you paint a masterpiece. Good luck.