Above painting: Louis Jean Francois - Mars and Venus an Allegory of Peace
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Tuesday, September 6, 2016


Welcome back to History Undressed, our regular first Tuesday blogger and author, Kathleen Bittner Roth! Kathleen Bittner Roth! 


Kathleen Bittner Roth

Historically, right before one is to “make it,” to realize his or her lofty dream, there exists a kind of dark, sticky space that causes people to feel that, alas, it is impossible to pass through and get any farther.

No matter how hard one had struggled up to this point, here is the critical turning point where most people gave up.

They quit.

They caved in.

They packed it in. And in the quitting, they lost a vital part of themselves - and a future filled with self-empowerment and peace.

Only about two percent of the population throughout the entire history of the world has managed to make it through that sticky space and on to fulfilling their dreams and goals. If you think you cannot possibly be part of the two percent, you can. The secret to success is simple, but not necessarily easy. It is commitment. And commitment means to never give up.

Here’s the secret successful people knew throughout history: It all begins with our thinking. What we think, we literally become. There is a simple order to this. Thought produces feelings, not the other way around. It is our feelings that will cause us to take action. It is the action we take that produces the form of our life goals. The sticky space I spoke of is usually found right before we keep on keeping on by taking action. Most people fail because they fail to take action and their dreams die.

The thing is to be aware of this before we commit to our goals and successful people throughout history knew this: Do our goals flow with our purpose in life? We all have a life purpose to fulfill. We also have free will.

Our life purpose is going to be difficult to attain. It is meant to be. The ease of it is in moving out of what is called “life issues”. Life issues are the opposite of our life purpose. They are the things that stand in our way. In truth, they are the fool things that stop us.

Norman Vincent Peale, author of The Power of Positive Thinking, had a life purpose. His was to become a world-class speaker; his destiny was to touch the lives of millions through his words. But when he learned to talk as a child, he stuttered! The stuttering was an issue against his life purpose. When he was learning to overcome the stuttering, he must have hit that “sticky space”. He could have given up, become a victim of his impairment. He did not. He never gave up.

Two young officers, helicopter pilots, were held prisoner in a Viet Cong prison during the war in Viet Nam. One evening, the perfect opportunity for escape arose. They slipped out of their cells and under a moonless sky found the still, murky waters where they could swim to their freedom.

“We are going in circles,” the one called to the other after swimming for hours in total darkness.
“Keep swimming,” the other whispered. “Keep the shoreline we seek in your mind’s eye.”

After a long while, the one stopped swimming. “We are doomed,” he said, growing weaker with his very words.

“No!” growled the other, renewed energy spurning him on. “Don’t think that way. Don’t give up. Keep swimming.”

Soon, he could no longer locate his partner’s voice. Still, he continued on. Finally, he reached the opposite shore just as the gray haze of dawn permeated the black shroud of night that had protected him. Exhausted, he crawled under a low bush and fell asleep.

He awoke to a dull and cloudy day. Peering through the bushes he spied his buddy. "Oh, God," he groaned. For there was his friend, floating face down in the murky water—only nine feet from shore.
Never give up.

Author John Grisham, on the bestseller list for years, was rejected by sixteen agents and fifteen publishers. I saw him on a talk show after his initial big hit. He said it was actually his second book. His first published book didn’t sell well. In fact, he said he had over nine hundred copies buried in his backyard that he’d bought up himself and couldn’t give away! But he kept on writing.

Never give up.

The publisher who accepted Jane Austin’s first book, Northanger Abbey, sat on it for six years before Ms. Austin wrote back and asked of its fate. The publisher responded that he was under no obligation to publish it. He refused to release it, to the public or to her, and it was not published during her lifetime. She just kept writing.

Never give up.

Elizabeth Barrett Browning received this rejection: “This is the work of an inexperienced imagination…” but she kept writing and submitting, with one thought in her mind—seeing her books on library book shelves.

Never give up.

Agatha Christie made the rounds of virtually every publisher she could find. Finally, after four long years, she was accepted and wrote on to become one of the most financially successful authors of all time.

Never give up.

It is rare for an author to be accepted the first time out by the first publisher. Most all famous authors were rejected again and again, and some quite cruelly. Take these few for example: Louis L’amour, the western author who never went beyond the third grade, was rejected over 350 times.

W. Somerset Maugham received this rejection: “There is some ability here but not very much.”
One of William Faulkner’s rejections read thusly: “…you don’t seem to have any story to tell and I contend that a novel should tell a story and tell it well. Yours does neither.”

Or how about George Bernard Shaw’s first rejection: “…It suffers, in our opinion, from the fatal effect on a novel, of not being very interesting.”

Never give up. Keep your mind focused on your goal. Your feelings will be stimulated by your thoughts. Action will follow. The reality, the form of your committed goal, will come to pass.
No matter what it is you are putting your heart into remember the words of words of Sir Winston Churchill in his famous speech to Parliament during World War II: “Never, never, never, never, never give up!

Kathleen Bittner Roth thrives on creating passionate stories featuring characters who are forced to draw on their strength of spirit to overcome adversity and find unending love. Her own fairy tale wedding in a Scottish castle led her to her current residence in Budapest, Hungary, considered one of Europe’s most romantic cities. However, she still keeps one boot firmly in Texas and the other in her home state of Minnesota. A member of Romance Writers of America®, she was a finalist in the prestigious Golden Heart® contest. Find Kathleen on Facebook, Goodreads, Twitter, Pinterest and www.kathleenbittnerroth.com.

PORTRAIT OF A FORBIDDEN LADY is book two in Those Magnificent Malverns series: A young widow returns to her childhood home after a forced absence and faces her first and only love, but despite their powerful attraction, danger compels her to remain his forbidden lady.  ORDER YOUR COPY!

THE SEDUCTION OF SARAH MARKS is book one in Those Magnificent Malverns series: When a proper Victorian miss awakens next to a handsome stranger, she must rely on the man's benevolence as she struggles to regain her memory and hold onto her heart. ORDER YOUR COPY!

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