What is Mental Toughness and
How Do You Obtain It?
This is an accumulation of years of articles and videos about the topic of mental toughness. None of the below will make you mentally tougher - that is not how mental toughness works.
Mental Toughness: Are you born with it?
Or can it be developed?
Picture from @mcteams3842 - Instagram
Answer: Both. As human beings we all have an element of basic survival instincts that will allow us to do amazing things that will keep us alive. But to fine tune these skills when not in a life or death or survival situation, this skill of mental toughness has to be developed. How is that done? One scoop at a time.
There is NO one event, motivational poster, movie, meme, or saying that makes you instantly mentally tough. This process is truly a consequence of disciplined habits of doing things that are hard, uncomfortable, and consistent. For instance, running a marathon or 100 mile race when unprepared for it is not going to build mental toughness - it will more than likely build aches, pains, and injuries that will most likely prevent you from training for months to follow.
You get TOUGH from the daily and consistent grind of preparing for that event - training when you don't feel like it, getting up early in the morning to run in the cold rain, or enduring the heat of the day. You build mental toughness one spoonful at a time, one day at a time, not all in one shot. After all, there is a fine line between mental toughness and stupidity.
Inspiration Phase: We develop a mental toughness skill through initial inspiration and motivation - something must resonate with you in order to make good habits that allow for you to expend excess energy chasing this dream. During this phase, we can use this motivation to start working, doing research, and building habits.
Habit to Discipline Phase: Once the initial motivation is gone, there will be days when you are not particularly energetic or motivated to work toward a goal, this is when your motivation has to evolve into discipline through consistent work. Without this discipline and will to work even when you are tired, mental toughness is not developed.
Mental Toughness Phase: Self-discipline, confidence, and the ability to create new habits will get you through any challenging goal at this point and you will find it will transfer into all aspects of your life.
Mental Toughness defined:
Finding the fuel when the tank is empty.
Here is a list of related articles and videos on the topic:
Not Knowing the Difference Between Mental Toughness and Stupidity is Dangerous to your Health / Future Plans - There are Two Types of Mental Toughness: One We Are Born With and One We Have to Grow.
Don't Listen to Yourself - TALK to Yourself - This is important. Learn how to do this BUT you have to be positive.
Five Steps to Building Mental Toughness - After recent conversations with a few different Special Ops friends (Army SF, SEAL, Delta, UK Army Commando), we all agreed that to really be one of the few who graduate Special Ops training, you eventually have to do one thing without care...
Twelve Questions about Mental Toughness (article / video) - This is a thorough reivew of the mental toughness topic asked from a teenager.
Tactical Fitness Reports On Mental Toughness
Tactical Fitness Report 168 - Stress Mitigation with BASE-R ® Method
- Related article
Tactical Fitness Report 147 - Motivation - Habits - Discipline (also read this)
Tactical Fitness Report 123 - Mental Toughness: Getting Comfortable Being Uncomfortable
Tactical Fitness Report 13 - Defeat the Quit Demon
Tactical Fitness Report 8 - Mental Toughness Discussion
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