The art of persistence

“Do not underestimate persistence. It’s the discipline. Show up. Who do you need to engage with? Be where they at. Be consistent. They’re going to remember you.”

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For over 20 years, with her organization Life Camp, Erica Ford has been working on the ground to prevent gun violence, intervene in conflict, and create legislation that saves lives. She’s worked with presidents to change policy, with cities to introduce programs that have reduced gun violence by 10%, and she’s persuaded cultural icons from musicians to television stars to speak out and get involved with her campaigns.

One thing’s for sure: she knows a thing or two about persistence.

“First, if this work is really what you want to do, then this is what you have to do,” she says. “So you do the work, you do the research. Think about what you want to achieve, and who you need to meet to make that happen.”

An example?

“OK. So, Les Brown and Gladys Knight were hosting a KISS FM morning show, and I wanted to meet them and talk about how they could support my work. Monday morning, I’m outside the studio at 5 a.m., and I say ‘good morning.’

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“First day, nothing.

“Second day, I say ‘Good morning,’ and they say ‘morning’ back to me. That’s it. But they’ve noticed me, right?

“Day three, now they’re curious. They’re all ‘Hey, we see you out here every day, who are you?’ And by the end of the week, they stopped and talked with me, and we made it happen! Do not give up. Put the time in. Be consistent.”

“Persistence is a practice. Persistence is a discipline.”

Hear Erica talk more about unlocking doors through consistency and determination on this Nicky and Moose podcast.

erika ford