10 Ways You Can Strengthen Your Mind Every Day
Written by Holden Rethwill
The brain has to be trained because in difficult and challenging situations, your brain will react the way you have trained it to.
Your brain doesn’t want to hurt. Actually, just the opposite. It strives for comfort. I mean let’s be honest, your brain would much rather you take it easy than sprint to that dark place on the Assault Bike. Your brain would much rather you eat that reward food than what you know deep down you should be eating. Your brain is trained for the big decisions in all the little decisions you make daily. Every time you let that little voice in your head creep in and tell you “It’s ok to quit” or “It’s ok to slack” or (insert whatever that voice tells you), you let that voice get stronger and stronger!
We NEED the opposite. We need the voice to grow that tells us to work harder, to stay determined, to stay the course. And, the only way that will happen is if you train it!
How can you train your brain?
Well in the words of Jocko Willink…“If you want to be more mentally tough, be mentally tougher.” Now, I understand that doesn’t work for most of us. So here’s a list of 10 ways that you can help to strengthen your mind every day.
- Do something that makes you uncomfortable EVERY day. Doesn’t matter what it is, working out, speaking in public…etc. etc. JUST DO SOMETHING.
- Surround yourself with people who will encourage you to do the above. They’ll set an example, and hold you accountable.
- Be honest with yourself after you complete something. Did you give that your best effort? Have a truthful conversation. If you’re 100% satisfied then there shouldn’t be any doubt. But if that little bit of doubt creeps in, you know you could’ve tried harder.
- Allow yourself to fail. We aren’t pushing to our maximum potential if we aren’t failing. Failure to fail is failure to give your best effort.
- Lean into pain. If you break an ankle, that’s not what I’m talking about. What I AM talking about is, for example, the 1800m row repeats on your program. Those suck. Plain and simple. They’re going to hurt, you’re going to be uncomfortable. You have the choice, lean into it and persevere, or back off and be dissatisfied with your effort.
- Learn to embrace the suck. The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows (thanks Rocky) and my military people get this the best. Sometimes you have to do the things that suck to get to where you want to be.
- Learn to clear your head. Doubt and negativity are the first things to creep in when we start to feel uncomfortable. Learn to quiet that voice and not let it grab hold. Best way…meditation. Find a way to zen yourself in any given situation.
- Understand your meaning. Why are you doing what you’re doing? Without a resounding reason, your brain won’t allow you to go to that place where true success is found.
- Ditch the victim’s mentality. This is just an excuse for giving up. Don’t be a victim to your circumstances. Use it as an opportunity to improve and push harder. Stole this one from my man, David Goggins.
- Kick your own ass (I’M KICKIN MY OWN ASS MAN! – Liar Liar). But seriously…learn what it’s like to have your ass kicked by something. Learn what it’s like to succeed in that situation. Learn what it’s like to NOT give up. Before you know it, you’ll learn what it’s like to have your mind be your greatest advantage.
“Make sure your worst enemy doesn’t live between your own two ears.” -Laird Hamilton
More mindset tips on the way – The Invictus Mindset Podcast launches this week! Make sure to check out the episode with Laird Hamilton with his tips for how to retain your youthful enthusiasm.