We are in the first week of March and by now almost 90% of people who made New Year’s resolutions have either quit or are about to on those resolutions they made back in early January. Why? Well, to be honest it is just extremely difficult to keep disciplined day in and day out. The daily pressures and just plain life stuff gets in our way and prevents us from staying focused. The other big reason for failure is due to the lack of mental toughness. Mental toughness is probably one of the most difficult skills to master, but if you master the ability to control your thoughts and to stay mentally tough you can succeed in almost anything.
I first became aware of what mental toughness was all about last summer when I was reading the book titled “Lone Survivor.” The book is about the story of Marcus Lutrell and his life as a Navy Seal. It was through reading this book and the story of what it takes to be a Navy Seal that gave me insight into what mental toughness is all about. You see, what I took away from the book is that physical ability is a big part of actually becoming a Navy Seal but more than anything they are looking to see who has real mental toughness and who is going to quit! As one instructor says, “If they quit here in training they are more likely to quit when things get tough out in battle.” And, this brings me back to why people fail at their goals.
All to often when things get busy or really challenging we quit and once that happens we rationalize to ourself that, well I guess there is always next month or next year to reach that goal. Now, I use the example of the mental toughness it takes to be a Navy Seal and I know that 99.9% of us will never have that ability to stay as mentally tough as a Navy Seal, but there are some simple strategies that you can implement into your life to help you get tougher mentally.
1.) Quit listening to the news and all the negative stories that they report on. Listen, it is so easy to fall into the trap of listening and hearing all the negative news that is out there and with that comes the weakening of your thoughts.
2.) Read positive and motivational books and quotes daily!
3.) Quit hanging around with people who are negative and do not 100% support what you want to accomplish.
4.) Understand that you will not always have great days but when days are tough have written down on a piece of paper your big “Why”. What I am talking about is the why do you want to achieve a specific goal. For me my big “why” is I want to have financial freedom and live life on my terms. Define your big “why” and every time you are feeling down pull that piece of paper out and read it over and over until you change your thoughts and get re-focused.
These four strategies are just the beginning to the start of your mental toughness. Practice these and you will be on your way to stopping the “I Quit” words out of your mouth and start reaching those goals!