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Pushing Through with Perseverance

Let’s face it … life has its fair share of ups and downs, hurdles, goals that seem attainable, and others that appear daunting. However, the character strength of perseverance can assist you in navigating these obstacles. When you’re at your best with perseverance, you can keep your goals in mind and push through — despite boredom, frustration, or obstacles.

Research suggests numerous benefits of perseverance, including heightened self-confidence and a sense of personal control. Those who persevere are typically viewed by others as reliable and trustworthy … as individuals who follow through on their commitments. Undoubtedly, this translates into establishing trustworthy relationships at school, work, or home.

However, individuals with ADHD often struggle with perseverance. With this in mind, here are three strategies to help you stick to your goals and persevere.

Pushing Through with Perseverance

1. Reflect on past experiences where you persevered.

Take a moment to ponder instances in your life where you persevered. Reflect on the following:

  • What was the scenario in which I persevered?
  • What motivated me to persevere in that situation?
  • How did it turn out? What lessons can I derive from it?
  • How did my perseverance in that instance carry over into future challenges?
  • What role did others play in helping me to persevere in this situation?

In summary, recalling past perseverance cases can help you summon the strength to persevere in future challenges.

2. Keep a strength-spotting journal.

This activity allows you to recognize and celebrate your strengths…and enhance self-awareness. In this journal, make a daily entry, which can involve either of the following:

  • Recognize strengths in yourself: At the end of the day, jot down your most significant challenges. Reflect on how you may have utilized perseverance to tackle those challenges.
  • Acknowledge strengths in others: Sometimes, it’s easier to recognize strengths in others rather than in yourself. Consider making a daily journal entry where you observe someone else employing the strength of perseverance.

3. Take action by actively practicing to enhance your perseverance.

Over the next week, actively practice enhancing your perseverance by completing one of the following exercises:

  • Think of an upcoming challenge over the next week. Consider how you can practice using perseverance to tackle this challenge.
  • For a challenging project, focus on giving it your best effort rather than fixating on the outcome.
  • Establish a new goal and list two potential obstacles that may arise. How will you overcome them?
  • Practice sticking to a project by committing to provide regular progress updates to an accountability partner.
  • Be mindful of negative thoughts that might hinder your sticking to a task. Try to dismiss these thoughts and concentrate on the task at hand.
  • For one of your goals, ponder the question, “Why am I doing this? Why is this important?” Focusing on your “why” can remind you that the journey is worth the effort.

We all want to be successful in achieving our goals. Consider how you integrate perseverance into your daily routines and observe what works for you. Be mindful of when you’re more likely to persevere — and when you’re more prone to give up. With daily reflection, strengths spotting, and active practice, you can gradually enhance your perseverance … step by step.

Andrea Yellinek, MS, OTR/L, CACP

Andrea Yellinek, MS, OTR/L, CACP

ADHD Coach and Life Coach, Executive Skills Coach