Persevere no Matter how Hard it Gets

I’m a quitter.

That’s what I used to tell myself.

Going back to school at age 44 was hard. But I was determined to prove to myself that I could do it.

Does this sound familiar to you? Have you ever adamantly retreated from something you knew you should pursue? I have.

My high school years were disastrous.  I worked hard, spent endless hours studying, yet, for the most part, I failed my tests.  I gave up when, for the second time, I flunked the Caribbean Examination Council (CXC) exams which would have positioned me for higher education or a “white collar” job.

In the aftermath of these failures, I did settle for some low-profile jobs, but it all came to a head when I migrated to the United States in 2001. I couldn’t find the type of work I wanted; desperate to make ends meet, I took residential cleaning assignments.

At that point I had two choices – go back to school or be a cleaner for the rest of my professional life.

The latter was not an option I was prepared to settle for, so, at age 44, I went back to school, which was even harder that time around.  Among my challenges was the fact that I couldn’t afford to stop working full time. I was married and had school aged children to take care of in addition to dealing with the heartache that some relationships bring. But I worked hard and three and a half years later, graduated with honors with a Bachelor of Paralegal Studies. Two and a half years after that I earned a Master of Public Policy, which I completed in 18 months.

I learned a valuable lesson during this tough time:

Keep going, no matter how hard things get.

You’re stronger than you think.

What about you? I’m curious. From what have you prematurely retreated? Your education? Your promotion? Your relationship?

We all need motivation at times. One of my former professors, an attorney and onetime dean of the paralegal program at Peirce College (who is now diseased), after reading my book, I Did it, You Can Too, said, “Fiona, I have been putting off a lot of things. After reading your book, I started taking actions to get them done.” I couldn’t believe it!  He was already an attorney!

What are you putting off?

If it isn’t you, it may be your child or that family member over whom you have influence. If you’re a teacher, it may be your students. It may be those you serve.

P.S. Help them get to where they need to be. Email me at and I’ll be happy to help.

#lifecoach #dontquit #empowerment #persevere


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