Persistence, perseverance, pestering…is it all the same? The first of the three implies an enduring deliberation of effort, and is neutral as to whom it applies to; the second is normally in reference to the individual who is engaging in the effort; and the last carries with it a negative connotation, like a gnat who is attracted to the smell of someone’s shampoo or body odor.
In preparing, formulating and filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether under FERS or CSRS, it is important to distinguish the subtle differences between the three words applied. For, in the end, it is not the words, but the actions which each describes, which is important for the entire administrative process.
Persistence may be appropriate for the relationship between the patient and one’s doctor, in pursuing medical treatment, and support for one’s Federal Disability Retirement application. Perseverance may be seen as a valiant character issue, for a multitude of things, including undergoing medical procedures, trying to continue to work despite medical obstacles, exhausting all avenues with an agency, etc. Pestering, if seen from a doctor’s viewpoint, reflects an attitude which may betray a desire to support one’s Federal Disability Retirement application.
There is often a delicate balance between the three, and one must be sensitive to such a balance in preparing, formulating and filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits from OPM.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire