How to be mentally strong
By Doug Wright
Think back to your Year 12 class. Who was going to be the star athlete? Who was certain to become an award winning journalist? Who was going into medicine to save the world? We all have talents. But not all of us have the inner fortitude and strength to make the most of them, many people just give up. As Kevin Durant once said, ‘Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.’
So how do you cultivate that mental toughness, that strength of character required to come away with success? Amy Morin, psychotherapist, was devastated when a close relative was diagnosed with terminal cancer. She wrote a list of things that mentally tough people don’t do, so that she could face her troubles with as much strength as possible. Her list went viral and a bestselling book was written.
Her list is paraphrased here.
- They don’t waste time feeling sorry for themselves.
Mentally strong people take responsibility for their own actions and understand that life isn’t always easy or fair.
- They don’t give away their power.
They don’t allow others to have power over them. They understand that they are in control of their emotions and that they have a choice in how to respond to others.
- They don’t shy away from change.
They embrace positive change. They will be as flexible as circumstances require. They understand that life is in a constant state of flux and that they have the power to adapt with it.
- They don’t waste energy on things they can’t control.
They focus only what they can control in their lives, even if sometimes, the only thing they can control is their attitude.
- They don’t worry about pleasing everyone.
They’re not afraid to say no. They strive to be kind and fair but recognise that they can’t please everyone all the time and that’s Okay.
- They don’t fear taking calculated risks.
Mentally strong people weigh the pros and cons of a situation before making a decision. Being fully informed is the first step before taking action.
- They don’t dwell on the past.
Mentally strong people acknowledge the past and learn from mistakes, but they don’t dwell on it. They live for the present and plan for the future.
- They don’t make the same mistakes
They accept responsibility for their behaviour and learn from their failures. They are able to move on and make better decisions in the future.
- They don’t resent other people’s success
They don’t get jealous when others win. They recognise that success comes with hard work, and they are willing to work hard for their own chance at success.
- They don’t give up after the first failure.
They use failure to grow and improve. They are willing to keep trying until they get it right.
- They don’t fear being alone.
They enjoy their own company and use downtime to be productive. They aren’t dependent on others for companionship and entertainment.
- They don’t feel the world owes them anything.
They don’t have a sense of entitlement, that the world owes them something. They find opportunities and work hard to succeed.
- They don’t expect immediate results.
Rome wasn’t built in a day. Likewise, mentally tough people know that real change takes time.
Although mental strength takes hard work and dedication, it is a goal that is within everyone’s reach, if they’re willing to try. And try again.
We tend to forget that before success, we’re likely to encounter failure, often more than once. Are you mentally tough enough to power yourself through those failures? Are you willing to never give up? If you are, you’re going to succeed.
No doubt about it!
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Doug Wright, is a transformed survivor of a head-on near death vehicle collision.
Passionate about helping people overcome their inner most fears, especially when recovering from trauma, Doug has survived to share his courageous story … his motto is “never give up”.
Away from his everyday activities, Doug invests his spare time playing his electric guitar, knocking out an eclectic mix of Eagles hits and fishing for coral trout in Airlee Beach, Northern Queensland.