Author Robert Greene writes in his book The Laws of Human Nature
that “almost nothing in the world can resist persistent human energy.”
Things will yield if you strike enough blows with enough force.
There are countless examples of people who have succeeded this way.
Think of the chemist and physicist Marie Curie and her painstaking persistence to discover radium.
Or Albert Einstein. It was over the course of ten years, through continual thought experiments, day and night, exploring every possible solution, that Einstein finally came up with the theory of relativity.
Greene notes that such persistence is natural to us.
Just observe infants: “you will notice how willful and relentless they are when they want something.”
We tend to lose this quality as we get older and our self-confidence fades.
Perhaps you can relate to this: we summon the energy to attack a problem or face some resistance, but in the back of our mind we have doubts.
Are we really up to the task?
This slight diminishment of self-belief then reduces the energy with which we can solve the given problem. This in turn leads to a less effective result, “which raises the volume of the background doubts even more, lessening the effect of our next action.”
And at some point, we admit defeat and give up. But this is almost always too soon: “We surrender inwardly long before we surrender outwardly.”
You can reverse this tendency by filling yourself with enough desire to reach your goal.
As Greene puts it: “The trick is to want something badly enough that nothing will stop you or dull your energy.”