Consistency is among the hardest skills to be obtained mainly because it doesn’t provide us with immediate rewards.
If you have to describe today’s world, what words would you choose?
Perhaps fast-paced, dynamic, overwhelming, exciting, filled with never-ending opportunities? Irrespective of how long this list may end up, I’m sure somewhere we’ll stumble upon the following description: “Today we live in a world that often provides us with immediate reward.”
But with immediate reward, there is something that quickly falls out of the equation. We often tend to lose our patience and with that, we often lose our ability to show consistency. And we all know that, in most cases, exactly the consistency is the key that promises success and long-lasting results.
Where did the consistency go in today’s world anyway?
Let’s take the road down memory lane and try to remember our childhood.
When we were kids, we actually had to do something that often requires time and energy in order to fulfill a desire or a wish of ours. For example, let’s say that we hear about a book that quickly manages to spark our interest. What did we have to do in order to get our hands on that book and read it? In the best-case scenario, we had to look it up in the local library and borrow it. Another option for us would be to go to the bookstore and buy it (if we had the money). The same went with virtually every type of information we wanted to educate ourselves on – be it articles, science, movies, magazines, you name it. We had to make the effort and do the work.
Nowadays many of our desires and wishes are easily attainable with the help of a simple Google search and hit the “Order” button. We rarely have to actually leave our homes in order to get a book we want – it’s enough for us to get it delivered or to buy an eBook for our wireless devices. Don’t get me wrong – I’m a fan of progress and I definitely think that the human species have managed to develop so much due to their never-ending desire for improvement. Surely today’s digital age is a wonderful time to be alive with its many advantages and benefits. All I’m saying is that with time we’ve all got used to immediate rewards – we have our books, movies, social media, connections, and even jobs on demand all the time.
Essentially, with time people tend to lose their ability to stay consistent in what they are doing.
Another aspect of this lost consistency is because of the diversity we witness today – if one activity fails to stimulate our interest for long, we quickly change it with another. Then with another. And then with yet another one. Of course, on one hand, this enriches our experiences but, on the other, we fail to stick our focus on one thing for as long as it’s needed for us to succeed in it.
I’m pretty sure the best musicians out there have failed every time they touched a piano or a guitar during the first year of practice. But if they hadn’t consistently shown up every day and kept getting better at what they do, will they have become what they are today?
When we refer to soft skills, we often tend to miss consistency in the equation
We all know that soft skills are of crucial importance for anyone who wishes to succeed in life, be it in the personal or professional field.
While hard skills are strictly specific to a job in question, soft skills are way commonly sought in people. Usually, some of the most mentioned and looked-for soft skills include empathy, active listening, conversating, proactivity, friendliness, open-mindedness, loyalty, honesty, etc.
Of course, they are all very important, but I think we should start adding consistency back to the list.
In reality, being consistent manages to teach a person a lot of things. I know that it’s harder and harder to obtain and maintain this skill with everything being on demand all the time, but, as the cliche says, what’s worth it the most usually requires patience, consistency, and hard work. Here are some of the consistency’s best advantages:
- it teaches you to really know what you want – the great thing with consistency is that if it’s present, then perhaps you really want to achieve a certain goal. This way you can indeed know what’s important to you.
- consistency makes you quite inventive – usually, when we are aiming at a certain goal, we often have to come up with newer and newer ways for its achievement.
- it helps you not to give up – as cliche as it may sounds, being consistent actually gets you not to give up in front of the first obstacle or difficulty;
- consistency teaches you that starting over is not a bad thing as it offers you experience – learning from mistakes is one of the best ways for a person to gain experience;
- being consistent teaches you to be patient and not to lose control over the situation – starting over can be annoying but, with the proper attitude, it can be an enriching and educational experience;
- it’s essentially a second chance for success – and who doesn’t love second chances when it comes to something that is important?
In a nutshell
I know that in today’s world is even extra hard to stay consistent but I strongly believe that it’s worth it in the long-term – in case you really want to achieve something, that is. Giving up way too early leaves room for later regrets, while continuously going after a goal leaves room for nothing but experience and success.