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As entrepreneurs, we are passionate, volatile and hungry for growth. We broke the norm, escaped the rat race, broken our inhibitions and look forward to a future with extraordinary success.
While our attitudes towards fire and risk taking were instrumental in taking this first step in building our brand, they are not enough to keep us going in tough situations.
The truth is, our courage often pushes us to take new risks. When a new trend emerges, we drop everything to pursue it. We fall in love with shiny objects and FOMO tactics. We're quickly switching platforms and hope that the next one will improve our results.
With this mindset, we're going to miss one of the most critical but overlooked business skills: tenacity.
The Importance of Persistence: How I grew my agency 200% by holding on to tough times
Let's go back to 2015, when my content agency Express Writers reached a growth plateau. Yes, we brought around 500 visitors to our website every day, which brought us about $ 29,000 per month.
But to be honest, it was tough. Most months we didn't even make a profit. I had no idea how we were going to scale and if we would ever do it.
During those months the temptation to quit was real. Of course I believed in content marketing. I had seen what it had done for amazing seven and eight figure brands like HubSpot and the Content Marketing Institute. But shiny items like cold emails, FB ads, and 101 new marketing tactics were popping up everywhere.
Couldn't I just try one of these and get back to content marketing when that fails?
I did not do it. I stubbornly held on to what I believed in. I worked harder, creating a content strategy, and executing it. Our result has doubled in three months. We ended the year 200% bigger than at the beginning.
The secret to this was tenacity. The Oxford Dictionary describes this word as "the quality or fact of having something under control".
It's determination. Perseverance in the face of hell and flood. Those who cultivate it will see amazing results in their daily life as entrepreneurs.
Related: The Best Way to Get What You Want? Focus on your customers' needs.
Maintaining Persistence: Four Simple Steps to Staying More Firm in an Ever-Changing World
All people can encourage tenacity through consistent work and courage. Here are four steps to success.
1. Make clear goals …
It's difficult to be persistent when you're not sure what you're holding onto. What are you trying to achieve How fast do you want to be there? What concrete steps are you taking there?
Take the time to create a stronger platform to hold on to tenaciously and set clear goals for yourself. Write down where you want to go and how to get there. Detail every step of the way. Remember to be as specific as possible.
Once you have your goals set, it is easier to keep them in place when things get tough.
2. … but prioritize habits over goals.
Goals are important, but they are not your number 1 for success. Always remember that you cannot 100% control the success of your goals.
For example, your goal could be to reach 2,000 website visitors per day through your content. While this is achievable, there is no control over when it will happen. The longer you wait, the more discouraged you become.
A good alternative is to focus on habits rather than goals. For example, instead of reaching 2,000 website visitors per day, make a habit of posting a quality blog twice a week. Stick to this habit tenaciously and the success of your goal should follow.
Related: 12 Things Sane People Do That No One Else Does
3. Love what you do.
According to solo preneur and writer Dan Dowling, "It doesn't matter how good or qualified you are: love comes first."
As humans, we hold onto what we love, be it a memory, a friend, or a place where we can find peace. The same goes for running a business. Love what you do and you will find that you hold on to it persistently.
4. Fill your life with persistent people.
Jim Rohn's famous quote goes: "You are the average of the five people you spend most of your time with."
Don't waste your time with complainers and people who give up and run at the slightest challenge. Surround yourself with persistent people and you will hold on longer than you thought.