Today we are still living in a world facing several challenges that include COVID-19, racial injustices, political power struggles and a host of other things. Most people would agree that it can be tough to maintain your faith and hope for better days. Many people may even ask themselves, “why should I bother to try.”. Well, I can assure you that giving up is not the answer. Instead, we all must find strength from within to maintain our faith and preserver despite what we may currently see and feel.
Mahatma Gandhi said, “you may never know what results come of your actions, but if you do nothing, there will be no results.” Gandhi knew the power of faith and perseverance and the reality that hard and faithful work always produces fruit. I want to encourage you to stay the course even during the moments you want to quit. Why? Because change can happen if you are persistent and keep the faith.
I want to offer two suggestions to how you can maintain faith and perseverance:
I would like you to consider having an open mind concerning the possibilities that may bear fruit if you do not give up. The sky is no longer the limit, so let’s take the limits off and begin to think of the possibilities present if we do not give up instead of quitting in the face of difficulties. We all have cortisol–which our brain loves–and triggers our fight or flight emotions. Our cortisol is one of the things that keeps negative thoughts at the forefront and suppresses our positive thoughts.
Unfortunately, it takes more work and true intentionality to diminish our negative thoughts and augment our positive thoughts. I want to suggest to you today to replace every negative thought with a positive thought by simply writing it down on a piece of paper. Doing so, will allow you to learn and adapt to the positive thought that you wrote via the encoding process.
According to neurologist Mark Murphy, encoding is the biological process by which the things we perceive travel to our brain’s hippocampus where they’re analyzed. Decisions are taken from there as to what is retained and, in essence, what is lost in our long-term memory. Writing increases the process of encoding. Adopting this strategy will better assist you to permanently replace every negative thought that comes to your mind with a positive view, because that’s what’s needed to stay the course even when you desire to quit.
Maintain a Legacy Mindset
We maintain a legacy mindset by realizing that today’s efforts will serve as the first stepping stone for our lineage. One of the difficult things that the country is currently facing is racial injustice, several hate crimes, and perpetual fatal tragedies involving police officers and unarmed Black and Brown men and women. These are just some of the things that our world is facing, and it seems as if no change is in sight, which can easily tempt many to give up or become unproductive in their stand for justice.
However, that is not the way forward. Instead, we must maintain a legacy mindset. Billy Graham said, “the greatest legacy one can pass on to one’s children and grandchildren is not money or other material things accumulated in one’s life, but rather a legacy of character and faith.”
Relationship building is the only way forward. However, it is not the easiest thing to build. Holding on to a faith that says better days will come,and persevering even when you don’t feel like change is in the near future are paramount to staying the course. In the words of President Barack Obama, “a change is brought about because ordinary people do extraordinary things.” Now, let’s stay the course of building relationships until our relationships change our world.
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