Is it possible to build mental strength in the midst of such a weak society? I think so. But you have to want it bad enough. You must Admit to your current mediocrity.
As one of my online mentor’s once said:
“when you feel like giving up, you’re only at 40% of what you can truly put out.”
His name, David Goggins, a retired navy seal and ultra-marathon runner. Pretty much a BMF!
So if David is right, it means that right now you haven’t even reached a third of your true potential. Crazy right?
In the following article, we’re going to dive deep into the practical and mental applications, that will take you from being an average chump, to a ferocious alpha male that dominates with superior mental strength.
The Mental Aspect
In order to build mental strength, you have to learn how to play with your mind.
You see, your body wants to do what it was programmed to do, conserve energy and remain safe. But that’s the problem, safety and stillness never helped anyone achieve anything significant.
Therefore, you must find a way to ignore your body’s messages and make it do what you want it to do, even if that thing is pushing beyond the point of exhaustion or dealing with extreme discomfort and pain.
It’s easier said than done of course!
For that reason, you must create stories to tell yourself that will help you push past the quitting point.
Stories that will trick your mind into doing whatever it is that you need to do with a relentless will.
You can make up your own stories, but I’m going to give you the three that I like to use, that way you have an idea of what they look like.
This Sucks, But It Could Be So Much Worse
I came real close to mentally breaking the summer of 2016. I was homeless for two months, when the apartment I was trying to buy failed to close.
With nowhere to stay, I had to crash on peoples’ couches most nights. And when no one was available, I had to sleep in my tiny Honda Civic.
On top of that, my girlfriend at the time had just dumped me, so my emotions were below ground level.
My morale was so low, I knew I had to do something about it ASAP. I knew that losing hope in these type of situations could be very dangerous; often suicide arises as a way out.
So, I began telling myself the following;
“It could be much worse… It could be much worse.”
Then, I began to think about different scenarios that I could be in, scenarios that made my current situation seem like a vacation in comparison. Among them were:
- What if my entire family died right now
- What if I was in Jail
- What if I lived in North Korea
- What if I was in the front lines of a war
- What if I was blind
By imagining Myself in these types of hellish situations, It put into perspective my actual situation. As a result, I feel guilty about complaining, since I knew there were people going through much worse.
Once I adopted this strategy, my mood improved; and I got the strength to lift myself and push through.
Now, I apply this strategy to everything.
Like whenever I run long distances, and I start feeling pain, I tell myself “what if this pain was permanent?”
This thought gives me a rush of strength, because I know the pain is temporary.
Use this mind trick whenever you’re doing something difficult, and I assure you that your mental strength and pain threshold will grow.
Life Is Fair; You Get What You Give
One of the main reasons most people lack mental strength is because they possess a victim mentality; that is, they believe everyone has it better than them.
And you see, you can’t be successful with this mentality because it means that you are reactive to life.
It means you accept the destiny life chose for you, and not the one you chose for yourself.
But if instead, you make the realization that life is fair; that whatever you give is what you get, then this builds mental strength, and you take full control of your destiny.
From then on you know that your lack of success if only a result of the minimal effort you’re putting in, and vice versa. Your abundance is a result of the massive effort you put out.
It’s this mental shift that will allow you to dominate life!
Everyday tell yourself, “I received as much as I gave, and I am 100% in control of my life; Life reacts to me, and I don’t react to it!”
Take Inspiration From Other People’s Stories
Whenever I’m feeling like my life is getting too overwhelming, I get on Youtube and listen to someone who’s had to overcome the impossible. By doing so, I come to two realizations;
1) We as human beings are capable of the impossible
2) Compared to this person, I have it easy!
The effect this has on me is… I feel more motivated and my mental resiliency shoots up.
I begin to think;
“if that person who I just watched in the video was able to overcome their problem, then I can as well, because I’m human just like them!”
I’ve seen stories of people who have overcome being born without legs; losing their whole family; being born with a mental disability, and even being born deaf and blind.
And that brings me to the story that has impacted me the most and allowed me to build mental strength. The story of Helen Keller, the woman who lived in complete darkness, because she lost her sight and hearing at only 19 months old.
Check out her story in the following video, and if that doesn’t inspire you then NOTHING WILL!
If a deaf-blind woman can develop the will and build mental strength to succeed, then so can you!
Here are a couple more unbelievably inspiring stories that will change your perspective of life. U
- David Goggins
- Heather Lawson
- Sam Berns
- Nick Santonastasso
Let’s Practically Build Mental Strength
By tackling the mental aspects mentioned previously, will put you lightyears ahead when it comes to building the mental strength you seek.
But as you probably already know, everything can’t be done with only the mind. We must take action to gain experiences, and carve neural pathways in our brains.
For that reason, I’m now going to show you four practical ways in which you can build mental strength.
The following tips are not going to be easy, but they are going to be worth it. If you stay consistent and apply the tips as directed, then over time you’re going to feel invincible and overwhelmingly confident.
Go To The Gym
One of the best decisions I made as a teenager (which weren’t many) has to be getting a gym membership. I was 17 years old when I did, and I think that if it weren’t for that one decision, my life would be so much different right now, I would be much softer.
Joining the gym made me a fighter; it made me realize that what I thought was my limit, was just the beginning.
The gym also taught me discipline, consistency, and patience; those are all words people are familiar with but don’t really know what they feel like.
Once you do become familiar with those four words at an experiential level, you’ll never forget them, and they spread to every area of your life.
One of the ways the gym builds that mental toughness is by getting you used to the experience of pain and discomfort.
Might sound simple, but most people today aren’t capable of handling the smallest amounts of pain and discomfort. Just a few moments of heat resulting from a broken AC, causes people to complain endlessly.
But at the gym that feeling of discomfort becomes all too familiar. You get used to pushing through the pain coming from your depleted, blood engorged muscles.
Doing that type of mental work every day comes a long way after a couple of years.
“The more you seek the uncomfortable, the more you will become comfortable.”
Do Something Exceedingly Hard Once Per Month
To have Success in life, you have to learn how to roll with the punches. If you don’t, you’ll lose all the wars that life inevitably brings.
For that reason, You need to learn how to desensitize Yourself to pain. And that can slowly be done by doing something highly challenging often.
Now, what you do cannot be something you’ve mastered, it must be something that challenges you to the point that it makes you want to quit. It must be a temporary hell that you must endure.
Here are some examples of what I like to do;
- Run 10 miles straight
- Swim 2 miles straight
- Spend a few hours exercising in freezing weather (without covering)
- Spend a few hours exercising in uncomfortably hot weather
- Go three days sleeping only 6 hours in total
- Get into a sparring session at a boxing gym
Those are just a few I’ve done. Just remember everyone has different pain thresholds, so adjust the challenges so that it causes you just enough pain for you to struggle.
After a few months of doing this, you will find that everything that you once thought was really hard, now seems like a piece of cake. Your resistance to pain will go increase, and you’ll do more of the things that cause discomfort but lead to growth.
There is a reason why all major religions practice some type of fasting.
It helps you conquer your mind, thus helping you build mental strength.
Think about it, in the short time-period that passes from breakfast to lunch, most people are starving and unable to function normally. Now imagine after 36 hours of fasting?
Most people can’t do it; that’s a task that requires true will power.
By fasting once a month, you’ll teach yourself discipline, willpower, and perseverance. The discipline comes from doing the fast even though you don’t want to.
The willpower comes from passing up on food for the time you’ve chosen to fast for. And the perseverance comes from fighting through the discomfort, and still getting through your day like normal.
You’re building three essential character traits with just one action.
how long should you fast for?
There isn’t an exact time in which everyone should fast for, it all depends on the person.
So, if you’re somebody who isn’t affected much by fasting, then I suggest you make your fast abnormally long, like 72 hrs. But if you’re someone who after a few hours of not eating becomes highly lethargic, then make your fast a 24 hour one.
The key is to start shorter and then go longer and longer once you start getting used to the fasting.
So if you start the first month with a 24 hour fast, then do a 36 hour fast the month after that. And then do a 48 hour fast after the 36, and so on.
The point is to feel as much discomfort and pain as possible, so you become more and more unaffected by it.
Dive Into Your Phobias
Fear is a very useful emotion that doesn’t get enough credit. It not only lets you know when something is wrong (Like your hand laying on a hot surface), but it also enables you to see what areas in your life you must tackle to become a better person.
Take me for example, one of my more significant fears was talking to strangers.
As soon as I knew I was going to have to talk to someone I didn’t know, I would begin to feel my heart beat uncontrollably, and my whole body would heat up. So in order to avoid that physical discomfort, I would give in to that fear and avoid talking to strangers entirely.
And it’s that avoidance thing that we do with our fears that keep us mentally weak.
If we can’t get over irrational fears like talking to strangers, talking to girls, or sleeping in the dark; then how are we supposed to be mentally strong to take on real great fears like death, gambling in business, or protecting our family from tragedies.
Therefore, expose yourself to all your phobias! One by one, starting from the least scary and making your way up to the most.
The feeling of accomplishment that comes with getting over a lifelong fear will make you feel all powerful, like you can take on anything that life throws at you.
Exposing yourself to your fears will allow you to build mental strength to take on life as a real alpha.
The map to developing mental strength is an easy one; expose yourself to pain, and your fears as frequent as possible. And get used to being uncomfortable.
It sounds easy, but it’s tough.
The key is to remain consistent and create a plan of action. After just a few months of following your plan, you’ll see how much more free and capable you’ll feel!