Late last year, I received an email from Teo Aik Cher, author of a series of bestsellers and a sought-after illustrator. He had put together the manuscript for ‘Why Persevere? A Teenager’s Guide to Going the Distance in Life’ and would like me to write the foreword.
[I have written a couple of testimonials for books by other authors, but a foreword is a first, and truly an honor!]
The book has now been published, and you’ll find two-and-a-half pages by me inside. :D
I am very glad Aik Cher wrote this book, Why Persevere?, and very honored that he chose me to write this foreword.
As a teenager, I did not have good looks, and I also did not do very well in school. In secondary school, I was bullied by some notorious school bullies and I never quite excelled in Mathematics or Science. By Secondary Three, I was in the ‘third best class’ from the bottom. But I never gave up on myself.
I set a goal back in Secondary Three to be the top ‘O’-Level student of my school. It was a crazy goal, some would say. Some teachers refused to teach when they came to my class, because many students were either reading comic books in class, chit-chatting, or simply daydreaming.
Every single day during assembly, I looked at the plaque with the names of the top students from the previous years, and I visualized my own name up there as well.
With dogged determination, I persevered, studied smart, never gave up, and now my name is on that same plaque. I did become the top ‘O’-Level student for my school.
Success never comes easily. One teacher once told my class this: “If you want something badly enough, you will get it.” And I have lived by that since.
Several years ago, I quit my job to be a full-time blogger. It has not been an easy journey, but I have had fun. I interview successful people for my blog and have encountered so many rejections, I have lost count. For one interview, I had to ‘chase’ my interviewee for 10 months, via 12 emails. Why did I persevere? Because I wanted that interview badly, and I was not going to be stopped.
Many people look at obstacles and tell themselves they cannot do it. The fact is, you can, and you must. In school, I thought the 2.4km run was a pain. But I kept training until I got the gold award for my physical fitness test. Last year, I ran a 5km race and this year, I am running a 10km one. The 2.4km distance has become ‘easy peasy’ for me.
So don’t whine about the obstacle. Make yourself stronger than it!
One of the things I have not been able to do yet is the chin-up. But I am working with personal trainers now in order to reach that goal. As motivational trainer Nick Vujicic once shared, the only limits you have are the limits you place on yourself.
So, my friends, why must you persevere? Because there are no limits. Believe in yourself, set your goals and go achieve them!
To Your Success,
Award-winning business and lifestyle blogger
Best-selling Author of Blogging For A Living