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Determination is the pushing onward toward ones goal despite barriers and hardships. Certain situations are done from selfish instinct pertaining to survival (the best because survival comes out of spiritual and not emotional energy). Others result from "socialization" (pushed by the customs of ones society) or from making a decision to "do it my way." Experience has taught me that throughout the push in the right direction there will be "alligators" along the path to test how much I really want to reach that goal and how strong I really am. There have always been people on the sidelines to tell me it could not be done or it was a waste of time. Some spread rumors and some deliberately put obstacles in my path. Yet, strong people make up their minds and then doggedly, almost stubbornly, stick to the settled purpose.

Perhaps the background for ideas contained in "Determination" came in 1400 B.C. when the Egyptians used cuneiform clay tablets for postal ("post" implied "fixed") correspondence.

After this practice was borrowed by the Romans at the beginning of their conquests around 753 BC, they built a network of roads that stretched across their broad empire. Thus, a necessary courier system for exchanging messages included setting up stations at various points to provide lodgings, supplies, and food for the courier and his beast--similar to modern day motels with their diners and gasol ine stations. The places where these relays occurred were marked by a post at the side of the road -- forerunner of today's term “Post” Office. Seeing the post station suggested to the courier not only an end to the day's journey but that it was a good place to spend the night. In other words, the postal carrier settled on a purpose to end the day's trip so as to make a fixed intention to stay for the night.

This was because the choice to continue the journey through the night was not in the best interest of him or his beast. It was from this "post office" scenario –i.e. “to bring (come) to an end”--that constituted a big piece of determination's meaning.

Another big piece concerned the putting of a boundary marker or limit on something already firm and fixed. The postal carrier stuck to his route and did not wander off in other directions, as an exploring sight-seer might do. Instead, he was very clear and beyond doubt about the scope of his duties and the required time restraints. Nothing else was more important than getting his job done. Still another piece was to know specifically where to head the following morning when the courier was ready to continue. Otherwise, the first step in the wrong direction would carry him to places he did not want to go (one winds up where one is headed). In bringing these parts together, determination's scope came to embrace: (1) an examination of what needed to be done; ( 2 ) weighing the best way to do it; (3) making a firm choice as to what to do; (4) finding out the end of what has to be done; (5) taking the first step in the right direction; (6) following the straightest route to the destination; (7) continuing until the destination is reached; and (8) knowing what has to be done once the destination is reached.

People with determination are filled with a desire-force that comes from intense concentration on what they are after. Like a magnet, this causes their goal to be attracted to their desire as a result of will power driving and pushing them together. Simply being in the presence of intensely determined people enables us to feel their desire-force. If we were to follow them around, we would see how they forget about minor things; have a short memory for bad things; and put on hold things they normally like to do in order to get to their goal.

In short, determination is going straight ahead to the goal, and with a sense of urgency. In the process it is fundamental to pay attention to details and do "right" every aspect of the job.

website: www.jablifeskills.com

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