“With ordinary talent and extraordinary perseverance, all things are attainable” – Thomas Fowell Buxton

Most people have been in this state; you’re downtrodden, exasperated, feeling like giving up or throwing yourself into a deadly abyss of desolation. However, you managed to dig deep and find that morsel of perseverance and tell yourself, “Things will get better only if I am willing to take action.”

Personally, there have been countless times when I have wanted to give up. The endless internal debates, the sleepless nights and the ever repetitive battle between my fear of failure and my fear of not even daring to try. These have stopped me from pursuing certain tasks in life. However, through the inspiring people I have had the privilege to know so far, I think that there are far worse things to worry about and be afraid of. There was once a wise man who said that your perception can change the outcome of what you would like to receive (which is where the mindset of perseverance comes in). With regards to that, I’m sure most of us would love to be able to receive the fruits of our labor.

Of course, that doesn’t always come as easily as we hope. Perhaps, you tried your best to pass a module that was essential for you to graduate, but you’ve failed it yet again for the third consecutive time. Or, you’ve gone from one to ten rejections (or more) for a full-time job. I strongly believe that no matter what qualifications you have or how horrible your situation may be, there is room for you to succeed, if you don’t give up.

I have been truly blessed to know friends and loved ones that have shown me the power of perseverance during hardship. One had to balance her studies while having to take care of the whole family, while her mother was undergoing cancer treatment in the hospital. Another had to throw away his future career in order to take over the role of a father in his early twenties because he still had younger siblings (the youngest was only 8 years old at the time) in school to be taken care of. There was also one who continued to forgive his parent again and again, even during times when most people would choose not to. These are just a few of many who continue to inspire me daily to work hard and not give up despite whatever twisted curve-ball life decides to throw at me.

There were definitely many times I was ready to back out during the second semester of my Masters. I felt beaten up about the possibility of not being able to carry out what I had learnt from my degree due to numerous factors, and the difficulty of balancing my personal struggles with the assignments at hand. In all honesty, I didn’t even want to take the course in the first place, but perseverance (with an abundance of support from some very dear friends and loved ones) certainly showed me that in the end, you can always find things to be grateful for. If it weren’t for the people who encouraged me and lifted me up when I was down in the dumps, I wouldn’t have completed or achieved anything that I could be proud of.

To everyone that has taught me the power of perseverance, I would like to end this article with a simple but wholehearted thank you.