Persistence and the Ping-Pong Ball
My book, Ben Behind His Voices: One Family’s Journey from the Chaos of Schizophrenia to Hope is launching soon. Suddenly I have an author’s page on Amazon, and I’m being asked to serve on panels about “how to get published” – on the success side of the table. Wow. Really? Me? You want my advice?
Well, OK. Here’s what I know, at this point in time, about success.
• Know your gifts. Recognize that feeling in the zone – when you love doing something enough to keep at it, just for the joy of it.
• Improve your skills. Make sure that thing you love to do is good enough to present to the world. We all know someone who thinks he can sing. Enough said. If self-belief is really self-delusion, you are going down a dead-end road.
• Partner. As you’re improving, get some trusted peeps to chime in with their expertise, advice, encouragement, and support. Let yourself be accountable to them. Hard to give yourself a deadline – at least it is for me.
• Persist. This alone will not work without the other three qualities. But the other three won’t get you anywhere without this one. To remind myself, I use a ping-pong ball.
Yep – there’s a ping-pong ball on my desk with a message written in black Sharpie: KEEP SERVING. Every day, when I’m not actually earning money directly, I serve a few ping-pong balls out to the universe. Research possible new clients. Send an email I’ve been putting off. Do a blog post. Rewrite an article. Tweet something. Connect to a group on LinkedIn. But I must admit it feels kinda random. (Well, sometimes I am kinda random).So, below KEEP SERVING, I have another message: & AIM! Well, at least sometimes, you have to serve with an eye toward where you want the balls to land.Continued on the next page