Persistence is one way to describe that staying power that wealthy, successful men and women have, that power that takes them that critical step past temporary defeat. To illustrate the power of persistence, Napoleon Hill tells us this story of one brave and persistent little girl.
[Note: As you read, keep in mind that this incident took place in the early 1900’s before the Civil Rights Movement in the United States; all things, at that time, were certainly not equal.]
“Shortly after R.U. Darby earned his degree from the “University of Hard Knocks,” and had determined to profit from his experience in the gold mining business, he was fortunate enough to be present to witness an incident that proved to him that “No” does not necessarily mean no.
One afternoon Darby was helping his uncle grind wheat in an old fashioned mill. The uncle operated a large farm where a number of colored sharecrop farmers lived. Quietly, the door was opened, and a small colored child, the daughter of a tenant, walked in and took her place near the door.
The uncle looked up, saw the child, and barked at her roughly, “what do you want?”
Meekly, the child replied, “My mammy say send her fifty cents.”
“I’ll not do it,” the uncle retorted, “Now you run on home.”
“Yas sah,” the child replied. But she did not move.
The uncle went on working, too busy to notice that the child did not leave. When he looked up and saw her still standing there, he yelled at her, “I told you to go on home! Now go, or I’ll take a switch to you.”
The little girl said “yas sah,” but she did not budge an inch.
The uncle dropped a sack of grain he was about to pour into the mill hopper, picked up a band of wood, and started toward the child with an expression meant to drive fear into her.”
This is the point where most of us would relent and let the old Uncle keep the fifty cents. Be sure to join us in our next post to find out how this little girl with persistence and a simple word triumphed over “the Man”.
I will see you back here Monday and Thursday every week for the continuation of the Mindset Mastery series.
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