Perseverance is a cherished quality in one’s character. Sometimes we begin work and become disheartened when we fail to succeed at the first chance. This should not be so, as life is not luck but a pluck. The habit of going on with the same work until it is finished successfully is called perseverance.
Perseverance is a great virtue and it produces manifold benefits. It is the greatest secret to success. It is rightly said by Thomas Alva Edison who took over a thousand patents for original discoveries like electric bulb and gramophone — that a genius is a product of one per cent inspiration and ninety-nine per cent perspiration. We should bear in mind that failures are the pillars of success, or they are the stepping stones to lead to success. No great work can be done without perseverance. The habit of perseverance develops our character. It teaches us to face boldly our distress and difficulties, and thus it strengthens our will power.
Great men of all ages and of all countries were persevering. They might have failed once or twice or even thrice, but they never lost heart. They tried again and again. They did not stop until the work was done. On the other hand, most men fail because they are not persevering. They cannot wait patiently. They cannot stick to one thing for a long time. The distinction between men of genius and ordinary men lies here. Such men have no strong will. They work half-heartedly. And for that, they cannot rise to life.
We should follow the footprints of those who have left their ‘footprints on the sands of time’. The story of Robert Bruce and the spider is well known. This Scottish king fought against the English for the freedom of his country. It was when his sixth attempt had failed, he was sitting in a cave absorbed in a melancholy mood, and his attention was suddenly drawn to a spider that was trying to reach the ceiling. Robert Bruce was very much impressed by this small creature which succeeded in its seventh attempt. Its perseverance whipped up his drooping spirits, and he too tried again and won freedom for his country in his seventh attempt. The memory of this Scottish king is still revered by his countrymen. We can recall the example of Rockefeller who rose to his position of the richest man in America by dint of his perseverance. In West Bengal in India, Pandit Iswarchandra Vidyasagar was a man of great perseverance who rose to eminence from a humble position in his life.
The examples of these great men will instil vigour into our drooping spirits. It draws benefit in most of our daily duties. In acquiring knowledge too, we are often called upon to master hard and dry subjects. We may be inclined to give up the attempt in disgust. But we should then call to mind the examples of those men who have overcome the hurdles through perseverance. Apparent failure is often a step towards success. Experience gained through failures does not go in vain. It paves the path to success. And as perseverance is the key to success, we must acquire this habit early in life.