It’s a matter of determination…


Have you ever stopped to consider how determined you are?

I’m a fairly determined person… although there may be a fine line between determined and stubborn.  That being said, I think it’s fair to say that determined implies a goal while stubborn implies inflexibility.  So, the line might not be so fine after all.

But I digress…

Determination is the topic that interests me at the moment because of circumstances in my life that I’m determined to change.  I’ve actually changed a lot about my circumstances over the past year but one key area has yet to be satisfactorily resolved.  But I’m determined to see it through to the end.

What exactly is determination?

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Hmmm, fortunately the word ‘goal’ was thrown in there, otherwise it was starting to sound a bit like ‘stubborn’ to me…

That definition is good but this perspective on determination is actually key.

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I confess that I find it way easier to stare at a challenge than to look past it.  After all, it’s right in my face.  But I know from experience that if you stare at a challenge long enough, your determination will disintegrate into discouragement.  And it’s a steep climb back up.  So, as hard as it can be sometimes, I’d much rather discipline myself to see past my challenges than to go down that slippery slope.

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Another enemy of determination is time.  If challenges aren’t conquered relatively quickly, it’s easy to start seeing them as obstacles.  I don’t think it’s any coincidence that obstacle and obstinate are so close in the dictionary.  To me, an obstacle sounds more permanent and, well… more obstinate… than a challenge so I’d prefer to just keep that word out of my vocabulary and mindset entirely.  I’ll stick with a good, old fashioned challenge, thank you very much.

But, with all this talk of what determination is, it’s equally important to talk about what determination isn’t.

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Some people are known for their ruthless determination.  I want to be known for my right determination.  Determination that inspires, motivates, and encourages others.  Determination that perseveres.  Determination that’s focused on doing something worthwhile with my life.  I want my determination to be a virtue, not a vice.

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So, consider this…

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I’m reasonably certain that I’m not destined for success but I can confidently say that I’m determined to succeed.  To be honest, I would much rather work for my success than fall into it just because I was destined.  So I guess I’m determined not to be destined.  Maybe I am a bit stubborn after all…

Speaking of stubborn, these images prove that some will go to great lengths to overcome a seemingly impossible challenge while others will hang on when most would have let go long ago.  Great examples of determination.

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So, that being said, this is my final determination…



4 thoughts on “It’s a matter of determination…

  1. Excellent post. You’ve no doubt heard the “conjugation;” “I’m determined, you are stubborn. He is obstinate”. Love the pictures of the squirrel and cat. [You don’t think collecting a 6′ high ball of string to be “worthwhile”? :)]

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