Are You Relentless Or Unrelenting? 6 Healthy Skills For Personal Success

Glaring sunrise behind solar panel array.

You probably know our type, that bull in a china shop, unstoppable whirling dervish-of-a-force.  We take the world by storm and take no prisoners! Visualize the prize, strategize, execute and dominate…won’t take “No” for an answer.  We’re about fanatical drive meeting ambition. To be “Unrelenting” is a quality which rarely fails those who also grow practical self-awareness, sensitivity, humility, softheartedness and moderation.

Truly of  all entrepreneurial qualities I’ve observed over the years, to be unrelenting is a top personal attribute. This powerful quality seems to be a harbinger of success for most aspects of a person’s being: lover, parent, partner, sportsman, coach, student, teacher, clergy, technician, politician, etc. To be constant, determined, unbending, persistent, steadfast and tireless requires incredible energy. Some people have it. Some people don’t. 


However, to be unrelenting may also portend personal pitfalls, being both a blessing and a curse. When carried too far “Unrelenting” can become “Relentless,” a potentially negative behavioral trait. The truth is in the behavioral semantics. The power is understanding self-regulation. We’ll share crucial personal self-regulation skills for healthily unrelenting humans later in this post.

There’s rich perspective comparing “Unrelenting” to its nasty big brother, “Relentless.” Whether you’re a digital marketer (like me), congresswoman, stay at home parent, president, minister, college teacher or high school student, taking a moment to reflect on qualities embodied in the concept of being unrelenting vs. relentless yields rich perspective for nearly any goal.

“Relentless,” The Darker Side Of “Unrelenting”

The definition of “Relentless” conveys mixed messages at best. Even positive connotations are diffused with negative overtones rooted in “Oppression,” denoting despotic cruelty that weighs heavily. The harsh side of being relentless can be grim, sporting synonyms like “Severe,” “Remorseless” and “Unmerciful.” To be relentless, is a mixed bag, laced with semantic negativity at best. According to Google, For all the semantic negativity, usage of the word “Relentless” has been steadily increasing. Go figure.

relentless trend

On the other hand the word “Unrelenting” implies more positive characteristics, with fewer ruthless overtones.


To be an unrelenting person means you are persistent, determined, tireless and nonstop.  The minimal undesirable qualities associated with being unrelenting (as opposed to relentless) are more about possible inflexibility. For the most part, being unrelenting is positive, with fewer hazards of over-behavior.

Sadly, English usage of the word “Unrelenting” is drastically lower than its peak adoption era in the 1800s. Perhaps that decline speaks to our planet’s growing unmerciful remorselessness.

unrelenting trend

If you are an unrelenting person, you know it’s a double-edged sword. The trick to riding ceaseless and dogged energy without falling into severe, relentless heartlessness is about having complimentary personal skills. Here are self-regulation skills for positively unrelenting humans:

1) Be highly self-awareaware
Even as you tirelessly blast from one unwavering objective to the next, be on the lookout for inflexibility. To be uncompromising means to come off as severe, rigid and potentially closed minded. To be healthily unrelenting means to be self-aware of what’s happening around you.

2) Be Sensitive To Transitions
Not everyone has unlimited energy and it’s common for driven people to be completely overwhelming. It’s important for tireless humans to transition in curves, as a process, instead of radically abrupt instant pivots. Give others time to process your wattage. In other words, not everyone moves at your pace so meet those you impact in the middle.

3) Lose Your Ego
Healthily unrelenting people are often leaders. Don’t be seduced by your own energy or authority. Sure, you’re blessed with continual drive so you’ll get a lot of attention for your power.  Don’t let adulation go to your head. You’re no more beautiful than the sensitive introvert in the library. Keep humility about you and channel that gorgeous energy for humble goodness.

4) Soften Your Heart
The negative side of being relentless is a hard heart. A pathway to enlightened behavior is getting in touch with your loving heart.

5) Moderate
Stop and smell the coffee my friend. I can tell you from personal experience it’s unhealthy to be always on. Shout (so to speak) all the time and soon enough others will certainly stop listening.

6) Keep things in perspective:  Above all, keep in mind that the very qualities that make a person positively unrelenting can spiral into negative behaviors associated with being relentless.

Truly of  all entrepreneurial qualities I’ve observed over the years, to be unrelenting is a top personal trait. You probably know our type. We’re bulldogs, intense and highly passionate.  We go and go… like the energizer bunny, visualizing the end goal. If we fail it won’t be for lack of energy. To be “Unrelenting” is often a success indicator, providing we also develop self-awareness, sensitivity, humility, softheartedness and moderation.


Copyright: Ollyy, Gencho Petkov, art_of_sun, Rob Hyrons, agsandrew

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