Ever think about what 'Effort' means? by Stewart Mednick

by 25 Nov 2009

In last month’s column, I spoke about effort and how it applied to success. I could spend an entire book’s length, cover to cover, on success and the philosophies that have been rendered over the years. But about 1,000 so called Gurus have already done so in varying degrees of success. So let’s not beat a dead horse. However, the key element to success is effort. No matter how anyone can slice, dice, mince, and puree success, it never happens by divine intervention. Some sweat and thought needs to be integral ingredients to this recipe. 

The mental aspect is almost synonymous with motivation. Everyone has a point of motivation. I have written about “where is the pain” and how to assist your customer in finding this sore spot and by eliminating this, you can successfully close a sale. Well, close the sale on yourself, so to speak. A famous baseball manager was once quoted as saying, “fifty percent of the game is ninety percent mental….” Gotta love baseball for a great source of writing material. 
Beyond the mental element, there is effort, which boils down to physically, actually performing actions. There are four aspects and stages of effort: rigor, persistence, passion, and endurance. Let me break down each component.
Rigor. This is the necessary drive and focus of effort. This is the element that will point you in the direction you want to go. Scrupulous or inflexible accuracy or adherence is a dictionary definition. The point is, if you have a goal and you want to obtain that goal, you need to incorporate rigor as the foundation of your effort. Do not compromise. Do not change direction. Do not quit. Rigor establishes the direction and tempo of your effort.
Persistence. The amount of effort used is my definition for persistence. Amount is not a volume type of thing. Rather, a greater or lesser measurement. It is the degree of rigor. One must continue “steadfastly or firmly toward purpose with course of action, especially in spite of opposition, remonstrance, etc.” You need to set a goal, attack that goal with gusto and last or endure tenaciously through all opposition. Of course, this is somewhat utopian, but I believe in the 80 percent rule; you will achieve 80 percent of your goal. So set that goal higher than you think is obtainable and be persistent. 
Passion. Passion is always synonymous with love. Love is an enigma, especially in the context of burning desire to accomplish a goal. Well, if persistence is the measurable volume of rigor, then passion is the fuel for longevity. Time, obstacles, focus, and lack of encouragement are all things that can make one stumble and wane in effort. Passion is the automatic reset. Passion is the reason for the rigor. This is why many people fail at achieving their goals, it is something they are not passionate about. If you have been struggling for the last two years with achieving your professional goals, maybe a reassessment is in order to see if your ‘passion for the action’ is still burning inside you.
Endurance. This is the power to bear hardship. The passion will fuel your desire, endurance is the engine to drive the distance. Persistence will keep you going after each hazard is cleared. In the most economically challenged time of this generation, many of you are still closing deals. This shows your durability to with stand the elements that oppose you. That is endurance. Not much more is needed to be said.
Effort = rigor + persistence + passion + endurance.
Effort, short and sweet. Apply it generously in everything you do.
Stewart Mednick is a seasoned mortgage banker and published author. His writing focuses on relationship development, personal empowerment, customer satisfaction, marketing and sales techniques. Stewart is available for marketing consulting, personal coaching and training sessions. If you have a comment or a question for Stewart, contact him at 651-895-5122 or smednick1@netzero.net


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