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How to Know if You're Persistent or Stubborn

balancingToday’s discussion was inspired by a great post on the pitfalls of persistence, written by Michael Bailey of Mobasoft.




george When Mary-Lynn first started brought this post up, I thought she was asking me if she was persistent … or stubborn. Now I do have an opinion on that!


marylynn I have an opinion on George, too … so we decided to keep our opinions to ourselves.



Michael asks if there is a difference between persistence and perseverance.


marylynn I think there is – if things are working the way that you want them to, you have to be persistent with what’s making things work to persevere. Now, if things aren’t working out the way you want them to, then you have to change your course to persevere. So you can’t be persistent in the wrong thing.


georgeI think it’s a matter of semantics. As a matter of fact, they are synonyms. I can respect the fine line that Mary-Lynn is drawing. But I’m going to be stubborn and stick with my original comment – they are one and the same.


marylynn See, George just admitted that he’s stubborn! I agree that if you look it up, they are synonyms. But I equate persistence with action and perseverance with a destination.


georgeSee how stubborn Mary-Lynn can be! And I was being persistent before. Mary-Lynn’s last comment is consistent with Seth Godin’s definition. Only he uses the word “persistence” instead of “perseverance.” He said, “Persistence isn’t using the same tactics over and over. That’s just annoying. Persistence is having the same goal over and over.”


marylynn That’s interesting. Here’s an example – when I was in radio, I was very persistent about doing whatever I could to grow as a broadcaster.


georgeSome might call it stubborn.



marylynn But I got to the point, with my job, where I knew I couldn’t persevere. I had gone as far as it could take me. So I decided to walk away and start Bigg Success with George – I can still persist, grow, and learn more things, plus I can persevere on my own terms.


One of the definitions of persistence, straight from Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary, is stubbornness. If you keep running into a wall, you have to ask yourself if you’re being persistent or stubborn. Michael refers to it as “blind persistence.”

2 questions to ask with your end goal in mind

  • Am I doing the wrong thing?
    If this is the case, persisting is just plain stubbornness. Of course, it’s not always that clear-cut. You may have invested a lot of time and money into a project, a direction, or a business. But it’s not working. You don’t want to give up so you just keep trying. Try to determine if it can work by honestly assessing why it’s not working. 
  • Am I doing the right thing in the wrong way?
    You may be doing the right things to reach your end goal, but you haven’t mastered the right techniques to advance toward your goal. In this case, you must persist … but change your methods.What do you think?



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You Can Always Bet on the Winner of This Race!

Kentucky Derby Blog Post Image

The Kentucky Derby is known as “the run for the roses”.

On The BIGG Success Show today, we had the first ever BIGG Derby – the run for BIGG success! It’s impossible to recreate it in written form so we highly recommend you listen in to the exciting race coverage.

Listen to Charlie Horse call the BIGG race! 

Thanks for joining us at the first ever BIGG Success Derby. It was an exciting race with BIGG bucks for the winner. The field consisted of five thoroughbreds:

  • Stumbling Block
    He’s been a strong contender every time out this season. You can never count this horse out; he’s always in the running.
  • Uninformed Optimism
    This horse is a relative newcomer to the racing scene. We’ve heard some great things about him. He’s fresh and ready to go! Hopes are high for a great run.
  • Consistent Delivery
    He’s not a flashy horse, but he has an amazing track record. He’s demonstrated time and again that he will finish strong.
  • Fear of Failure
    He’s a real threat who often comes out of nowhere to defeat his opponents.
  • Persistence
    This horse is undefeated in competition. But the talk is that he will be severely tested today with this field.

What a day! We hope you enjoyed our broadcast of the first ever BIGG Derby. Until next time, here’s to your BIGG success!

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file | podcast:

Image credit: WikiMedia Commons

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Get People to Buy into Your Personal Brand with This

Think about a brand you regularly use. Why do you use it?

Chances are it boils down to this – you’ve come to trust that brand because you know what to expect.

Here’s a little understood point:

It’s better to be consistently average (that means mediocre), than to have occasional spurts of greatness followed by spells of disappointing performance.

Consistency is critical because people like to know what to expect. That’s the reason brands have thrived.

Some of you may remember traveling in the days before chain restaurants and hotels. You never knew what you were going to get. Sometimes it would be great; at other times, it was a disaster.

So the chains grew because people knew what they could expect, no matter where they were. Travelers didn’t want to roll the dice so they settled for the consistency that the chains provided.

So how does all this apply to you and your personal brand?

It comes down to two things – performance and personality.

Performance means delivering on promises. Quality, timeliness, and cost-effectiveness all play into the value you create. Day-to-day, people form perceptions of what you can do. You have to consistently meet those expectations in order to continue building trust in your brand.

How pleasant you are to deal with? How do you handle tough situations? How do you treat people? All these, and more, form expectations of how easy is it to work with you.

One of the biggest destroyers of your personal brand is moodiness. When we’re moody, people don’t know what to expect. They start to avoid us. It’s hard to work with moody people.

You may not be able to prevent moodiness, but you can keep it check. You don’t need to share it with the world!

More on personal branding

For What Will You Be Famous?



Our bigg quote today comes from George Ross, the man who used to sit at Donald Trump’s right hand on The Apprentice:

“To be successful, you have to be able to relate to people; they
have to be satisfied with your personality to be able to do
business with you and to build a relationship with mutual trust.”

And mutual trust is something you can bank on!

In fact, we used to bank there, but then a bigger bank bought them out!

Next time, we’ll look to man’s best friend for some lessons about friendship. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!


(Image by rev)

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What You Can Learn From Jugglers

Are you fascinated by jugglers? We are! Around the holidays, we sent our newsletter subscribers a link to an amazing video of a guy juggling six or seven balls AND playing a song on a keyboard! 

How do jugglers keep all those balls going? Since we’re not jugglers, we did some research. We found step-by-step instructions to learn how to juggle, written by Dr. Craig Rusbult. He taught juggling at the University of Washington for ten years.

Can we learn anything from jugglers about balancing our professional and personal lives?

It turns out that we can!

Start with one ball.
You need to start with one ball and get used to the motion and pattern. Practice reaching the same peak time after time. It won’t be easy at first, but over time you’ll naturally control the ball.

To juggle work and life, start with one “ball” – work, family, you-time, or another area. Obviously, you can’t ignore the other areas, but you can, and must, FOCUS on one area to start.

Find the pattern in that area – take it to its peak while keeping it under control. Otherwise, it will control you.

Start adding balls, one at a time.
Once you’ve mastered one ball, add a second. Get used to juggling the two balls while staying in control. Then add another. You’ll see that it’s not that hard to juggle three balls because you only have one ball in the air at a time.

In your real life, add a second area and give it the attention it deserves. Then add a third. At any given moment, you’ll only have one ball in play. However, you’re always planning to put the next one in play. You’re juggling your life like a pro!

4 tips to become a great work-life juggler

  • Practice, practice, practice
  • Like anything else, the more you do it, the easier it gets.

  • Find your rhythm
  • Consistency is the key – you know what to expect. You’ve established patterns of behavior. Your balls peak at the same height, which keeps your timing in check.

  • Keep it going.
  • Getting started is the hard part. Once you get it going and find your rhythm, it just naturally happens. You’re relaxed – you don’t have to force it, you’re just going with the flow.

  • Maintain a positive attitude
  • Don’t worry about dropping the ball. You’re not perfect. Don’t expect yourself to be. Just smile and start juggling again!

How do you juggle all the balls in your life? Leave us a Comment.

Our Bigg Quote comes from Thomas Merton:

“Happiness is not a matter of intensity
but of balance, order, rhythm and harmony.”

It’s fun to watch a juggler, but the act always comes to an end. Learn to juggle your life because your show must go on!

Next time, we’ll discuss what to do when you have more potential than your job offers. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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