By Jose R. Villanueva

As originally published on the Listen & Be Heard Weekly1, November 9, 2005.

It is very easy for an individual to quit from an activity. We see in life that there are those that are extremely successful in anything that they do, and there are those that find failure after failure. There are dynamic characteristics in those that are successful, and it is an opposite in those that fail. There never ever happened to be failure anytime. A goal was never persisted until the end. Those that accomplished goals persisted despite barriers, so there is no such thing as failure. If an individual wants to delude oneself into believing that one failed, it does not change the fact that individual did not finish a cycle of action. On one's own free-will one stopped action. I have experienced parents of my students that will not allow having a long-term commitment to the activity that their children are engaged in. There has to be a level of commitment to an activity because it takes time to develop skill in any endeavor. Children have to be given an example by their parents that one should finish what one started. When things get tough, one cannot cower to one's fears or hardship.

There are always positive characteristics in those that are successful. It starts with a positive mindset. They never allow negative thoughts to infiltrate their thinking no matter how tough things get. They push with tremendous self-determinism despite the barriers. They refuse to buy into those who do not support them in their goals. In fact, they may very well disconnect from such influences. Their ethical standard is far greater than the norm because they understand that in order to achieve or maintain their success they must operate on the greatest good for the greatest number. There is always a constant attempt to become better at what they do. They always look to improve over their last best. Confidence, presence, and certainty are always present. Successful people are leaders because of their actions. They are then named as influential and powerful. They do not themselves state that they are leaders, but it is stated clearly by those who know them or who have been touched in some way.

Parents can identify characteristics in their children that may be a detriment to their success. It should be evaluated at a very early age, so that patterns can be changed. If parents do see these negative characteristics in their children, they better look in the mirror. Children will mimic their parents, so it is vital that parents recognize these characteristics. This will allow them to alter patterns, so a child no longer exhibits the negative behavior that will lead him down a road of failure.

It is vital that parents exhibit leadership. It is on the strength of stable examples of living that can determine a child's mindset. If a parent is questioning why Johnny always quits, then that parent better look at what their own pattern of finishing things that they started. They better look at what their level of commitment is to all the things that they do. If a child is not loyal to anyone or any group, then the parents need to look at what their level of loyalty is to individuals and groups. Positive characteristics can be taught and supported. They can be altered once identified to ensure that a child has his best foot forward in any activity they engage in, and possibly in life as well.