Perseverence Is Key

Stephen - Staten Island, New York
Entered on January 3, 2009
Age Group: Under 18

While spending four years taking the martial art Taekwondo (TKD), I was told repeatedly to never give up. My mentor, Master Kim, always used to tell me to try my hardest and to overcome any possible feelings that would cause me to back down. What he taught me, in his own way, was the power of perseverance. I believe that this is the most important quality to a successful future.

At age 7, my parents enrolled me into TKD classes. Every 4-5 months I would successfully achieve a new rank: yellow belt, then yellow-green, then green, and eventually, my black belt. Throughout this time, I faced plenty of difficulties, many of which would have made any other child of that age quit. I had to conquer the art of push-ups, sit-ups, sprints, calisthenics, and, of course, fighting.

Tempted many times, I wanted to quit; however, I sat down and spoke with my mentor. He told me that if I decided to do so, I would never see the day where I would receive the esteemed rank of black belt. I listened to him, and continued through all of the intense practice.

Eventually, all of that perseverance paid off and I achieved the rank of black belt. In fact, I actually continued on to the point where I would achieve another major rank, the second-degree black belt. Now I am not saying that everybody will always achieve what he or she wants just by continuing on, and persevering, but there is definitely a greater chance. If somebody just gives up, there is absolutely no possibility of becoming successful. People that give up are always failures, and they are not going to impress anybody.

Almost everyone fails his or her first couple of tries. No one starts their life perfect, and perfection is almost impossible to achieve. The term “practice makes perfect” is almost true; but you’d have to have perfect practice to become even close to perfect. Eventually, one can master a certain subject—whether it is in school, a career, life, or even in some sport. The power of perseverance is key to holding a successful life, and nobody should be exempt from having it.