At the age of 22, I decided to sell self-help books during my summer break to give back to the community. Day after day, I stood in the hot sun surrounded by the bricks of “Brick City”, New Jersey. My sign said “Righteous Books for Sale” and I had a price list of books listed on my cart. I got up early in the morning and pushed my wooden cart full of books about half a mile from East Orange to Newark.
Hours would pass without making a single sale. Occasionally, my best friend would come by and hang out with me, making jokes to past time. After one week, I had only sold only about 10 books. A gentleman who simply wanted to support something positive purchased five of those books. While I didn’t make monetary gains that summer I learned an invaluable lesson. One can only reach goals that they set.
How to Achieve Your Dreams with Persistence?
My goal was to simply give back to the community and that is what I accomplished. There was another man on that block, but his goal was to earn money and that is what he accomplished. We will refer to him as many did “The Bum”.
I watched in amazement as this homeless man-made more money in an hour than I could make in four from my corner. He was persistent and did not waver at rejection. When one person told him they didn’t have any money he was asking the next person within seconds. He was adaptable. I once saw him go to one car and tell the person that he was hungry. When offered food, he said that he was thirsty and just needed some change to get water. He would rub his stomach at one car and dance for the next. When he reached his “daily quota” he was nowhere to find for the rest of the day. He woke up early, I know because by 6 am he was already outside and “hungry”.
His goal was to get money and he got it. It’s unfortunate that such a spirit was not used in a productive or constructive way but there was a lesson to learn regardless. If you have a goal, and will to put in the work as if there is no option to fail, the universe dictates that you will reach that goal. Persistence precedes success.
“Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.” – Thomas A. Edison
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