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August 31, 2015

Enduring to Endure

Hal photo outside Feb2012Beyond talent lie all the usual words: discipline, love, luck — but, most of all, endurance.” (James Baldwin)

I have to admit that it’s been fun, as my teenagers start to launch, talking to them about work. Sure, we still converse a lot about school, and relationships, but we also talk about business, and what it takes to make a difference in the world.

While I enjoy discussions about being really talented in one’s occupation, I find myself emphasizing talent less and less. I guess I’m old enough to have seen incredibly talented people flame out, or flake out, too soon to succeed.

What matters more is endurance. Persistence. Staying alive through the valleys of self-doubt and public criticism. Just hanging around, while others don’t, is the least sexy, but most consistent, formula for success.

It’s a good thing we get to model this for our kids, as we endure through all the challenges of doing family. Those of us who persist in parenting, refusing to quit and still striving to learn, are on the right path.

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