Consistency is key when it comes to long-term success. If you are like me, you may have found yourself frustrated and discouraged with your inability to “stick with it” for the long haul. I am not saying that developing consistency will be easy, but it is possible. Below, you will find three motivational keys that, if applied, will assist in unlocking a new level of consistency.
Key to consistency #1: Count the cost
Jesus, speaking in the context of discipleship, is very clear with His followers concerning the idea of “counting the cost”. He uses a very basic and common example to make a profound point.
Luke 14:28-30 (GW)
“Suppose you want to build a tower. You would first sit down and figure out what it costs. Then you would see if you have enough money to finish it. Otherwise, if you lay a foundation and can’t finish the building, everyone who watches will make fun of you. They’ll say, ‘This person started to build but couldn’t finish the job.’
This passage leaves us with three questions to consider before undertaking any significant endeavor:
3 questions to consider (before you start)
1. What is your goal? It must be well defined. There are three characteristics I require of every goal; it must be observable, measurable and transferable. This helps keep me from having unclear goals.
2. What will you need to complete the goal? Do the math, this helps both the optimist and pessimist maintain balance.
3. Do you currently have what you need to reach the goal?
Jesus warns us that failing to answer these three questions correctly, will lead to failure.
Key to consistency #2: Clarify the purpose
You have considered the goal, weighed the cost and dedicated the resources. It is at this point where consistency becomes crucial. Inevitably, the time will come when the going gets rough or the excitement has faded and you are left with the reality of the effort needed to complete your goal.
I was speaking with a young man about his future; I asked him what he wanted to do. He spouted off a couple of jobs that were totally unrelated, it was at this point I asked him, “why”? Why those jobs? “I can make a lot of money”, he replied. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not against making money, but “making money” is often not enough to compel a person to succeed at a job.
When it comes to consistency, purpose, is a powerful source of motivation. I do what I do for a far greater purpose than “money”. There have been many occasions when the purpose behind my pursuit, was the only thing that kept me going. If the purpose of our pursuit is not clear, then, over time, the clouds of the mundane will obscure the value of our goal.
3 questions to consider[dropshadowbox align=”right” effect=”lifted-both” width=”200px” height=”” background_color=”#ffffff” border_width=”1″ border_color=”#dddddd” ]”If we believe that the return of our effort is worth the sacrifice of our commitment, we have found a powerful key to consistency.”[/dropshadowbox]
1. Why is this pursuit important?
2. What difference will it make in my life and the life of others?
3. Why should I be the one to do it?
Key to consistency #3: Consider the return
This may appear selfish on the surface, however, when it comes to consistency, considering the return is very important. In order to be consistent, I need to know that the effort will be worth the return.
We have one life, one opportunity to make a difference. We can dedicate our lives to anything, but not everything. If we believe that the return of our effort is worth the sacrifice of our commitment, we have found a powerful key to consistency.
3 Questions to consider
1. What will be the long-term return of my commitment?
2. What am I willing to give up now in hope of the future return?
3. Is my endeavor worth the investment?
If you want to finish strong:
Count the cost, clarify the purpose and consider the return.