Cultivate Determination

Written by Violaine Guéritault, Ph.D.

Determination is like a secret ingredient that has the power to transform your life by turning opportunities into reality. It keeps you moving forward, focused, and capable of overcoming the challenges and obstacles that may come between you and your goals and dreams. Determination is the #1 quality that separates failure from success. Choose to integrate it into your life, develop it, cultivate it, and nurture it. After that, the sky’s the limit.

Cultivating self-determination skills is one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself. Determination will help you gain control over your life and therefore it is an essential ingredient to your success.

Simple ways to cultivate it!
Be aware.

Identify and understand your abilities and your limits. As the famous psychologist Robert Sternberg said, success is about capitalizing on our strengths and compensating for our weaknesses. Learn to become aware of who you are and what your strengths and weaknesses are. Recognize them, and most importantly accept them. Knowing yourself truly, in all humility, will empower you in ways that will surprise you and that will give you the courage and the motivation to transcend what you think are your limits. By doing so, you will cultivate and strengthen your self-determination.

Do your best.

Work hard, give your best and persevere in the face of obstacles and adversity. Dreams come true and goals are reached through action. Your feeling that you are in control of your life is essential for you to choose and take the right line of action to make things happen for yourself. Be aware of your strengths and make them work for you. Take charge and look ahead, never behind. Don’t give up and don’t give in when obstacles arise. See those obstacles as opportunities to reinforce your determination. Self-determination, like many other abilities, works pretty much like a muscle. The more you use it, the more it develops and the stronger it gets. So, go for it, grab every opportunity you can find to use your self-determination so you can reap all the benefits it has to offer.

Remember your past achievements.

Capitalize on your past wins and achievements. When obstacles arise, or even pile up, when your determination is put to the test and you feel tempted to give up, remember a past win or a past achievement. Let that past win remind you of your capacity to overcome hurdles and of how you have succeeded in the past and made a difference somehow either for yourself or for someone else. This will re-energize your self-determination and propel you forward toward your dreams and goals.