"Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving." Col 4:2 ESV
The word translated 'Continue Steadfastly' is Proskartereō in the Greek (Strong's G4342). It is a verb that means devotion or participation in endurance. Like a fan that is devoted to a sports team we are invited to be zealously devoted to prayer.
This devotion has the quality of watchfulness also... of awareness... there is an expectation from God that something will change and we are looking for that change actively... we are also aware of our surroundings like a night guard is watchful and aware as he walks his rounds.
Lastly the verse speaks about thanksgiving. A prayerful watchman has a grateful heart. We are grateful for what is and also what will be. Prayer does that because we are in communion with the one who has stretched out His hand and given us so much.
A thankful person actively assesses the value of relationships and assigns a high value to them. Prayer is a form of 'active thankfulness'. Worship is extolling God's qualities aloud and prayer is a way that we directly relate God to circumstances by communicating with Him about them and allowing Him to communicate to us.
Can you tell someone they should root for a certain team? You can but will they do it with devotion? A person becomes a fan by exposure to the greatness of something... through a unique kind of identification that make them follow along and have a desire to see victories and check scores constantly.
Exposure to God's greatness makes us look for a way to 'check the score' of the game. Prayer is the way we do it.