Perseverance: continued effort to do or achieve something despite difficulties, failure, or opposition.
We’ve all been told this in our lives: Never give up, keep going, don’t quit. It seems like these “words of encouragement” come when we (don’t want to hear) it need to hear it the most. And these positive-Polly’s are on to something. Research shows that perseverance gives you self sufficiency, less depression, and positive self-perception, among other things. So the next time your boss, teacher, friend, partner, (insert uplifter’s name here) is telling you that you can follow through with whatever life’s throwing at you, remember that they’re helping you in the long run.
Don’t Mess with the Time Continuum: Do something Great With Your Life
Let’s take a look at what we can learn from the writers of ‘Back to the Future,’ Bob Gale and Robert Zemeckis. What we now know as a media classic was actually rejected more than 40 times. Disney rejected the movie, saying it was “about incest,” referring to the scene where Marty McFly’s mother kisses the 18-year-old version of him in 1955.
At any point in time, Gale could have quit. We can learn from him what Dr. Ann S. Masten describes as choosing to do something great with your life. We only have one life, and it’s short.
We often have difficult workouts and warmups in karate, where our bodies want to revolt and say, “NO MORE” (proprioception), but our ability to push through will give us confidence and inspiration to continue going. Tip testing, the black belt pre-exam, and black belt exam are times when we may face rejection. We’re all going to face rejection, but our ability to be resilient is what can help us become successful.
2. We Don’t All Have DeLorean Time Machines: Make Your Time Count
It took 5 years for the film’s script to be written and filmed. It went through many different versions and was only taken on by Steven Spielberg after the financial success of one of the writer’s (Zemeckis') films, ‘Romancing the Stone.’
Zemeckis and Gale had the attitude of Thomas the Tank Engine: “I think I can, I think I can.” Psychologist Albert Bandura says that self efficacy, or belief in one's ability to succeed in specific situations or to accomplish a task, can play a major role in how one approaches goals, tasks, and challenges. If you think you can succeed, you try harder, and you’ll often get more successful outcomes.
It’s no wonder that successful athletes often rehearse winning moves in their head before performing.
3. Even Doc Brown Had to Wait for Lightning to Hit the Clock Tower: It Takes Time to Be Successful
After years of writing, rewriting, and finally getting the film chosen by Spielberg, ‘Back to the Future’ was a great success. It was released on July 3, 1985 and Back to the Future spent 11 weeks at number one grossed more than $381 million worldwide, becoming the highest-grossing film of 1985. It won the Academy Award for Best Sound Effects Editing and was nominated for three other Academy Awards. It was nominated for four Golden Globes as well as other prestigious awards in Hollywood, such as the Hugo Award and BAFTA.
Rotten Tomatoes, review aggregator, shows that 96 percent of critics gave the film a positive review. Rotten Tomatoes reports that it is "Inventive, funny, and breathlessly constructed…[it] is a rousing time-travel adventure with an unforgettable spirit."
The President of the United States during the time, Ronald Reagan, even quoted the film during his State of the Union Address in 1986. As of 2007, it is in the National Film Registry, selected by the Library of Congress.
The writers went on to create two sequels in 1989 and 1990, ‘Back to the Future Part II’ and ‘Back to the Future Part III,’ respectively. Additionally, it had an animated series, theme park ride, video games, and even a musical.
Perseverance helped Gale and Zemeckis create what we now know as a classic.
We all have the ability not only persevere but to do it well and successfully. University of Pennsylvania professor of psychology, Angela Duckworth believes that innate talent is overrated. She states that the key to success is a blend of persistence and passion—or “grit”. “Our potential is one thing,” she writes. “What we do with it is quite another.” Karate often provides us with the opportunity to persist. The workouts are hard, the testing can be difficult, especially if you’re afraid to perform in front of others, and there are lots of moves to learn, including sets and katas. Through these challenges is an opportunity to continue against opposition and obtain grit. One of our instructors, for example, took his black belt exam four times before passing. Mr. Baker #2 failed his first exam, was told he wasn’t going to pass the second exam, had issues with the third exam, and finally passed on the fourth try. It took 7 years to get his first black belt, but through perseverance, he became a black belt.
Don’t Make a Flux Capacitor: Come to East Mesa Karate
Although it may be hard to hear the phrase, “Don’t give up,” it can help you become the best version of yourself.
We’re talking about never giving up this month: never giving up on yourself, not giving up even when we don’t want to act on it, and you can do great things (like Thomas Edison) if you keep going. At East Mesa Karate, we want everyone to become who they want to be. To learn more about our services and how we can help you in your time continuum, call us at 480-986-7177 or fill out our online form.