I just had the pleasure of finishing David Goggins book, Can’t Hurt Me. This mans journey is one I won’t ever forget and will likely follow from this day forward. David’s journey while unconventional will make you question your own intentions and the efforts behind them. There were so many quotable quotes throughout this book that personally appealed to me but the two I am going to offer you are really the most important to me.
You have to go to war with yourself before you can find peace” – David Goggins
That quote says it all! I have often told my kids that “nothing worth having comes easy” but Goggins’ quote so perfectly states it in the raw. What is it that you want? A career, a fit body, a fat bank account, spirituality, athleticism…??? What DO you want? Once you figure that out now ask yourself how far you are willing to go to get to that “want”. To get to the FINISH LINE we have to set the intention, lay out the plan and EXECUTE. We have to do what we say we are going to do. This my friends, makes all the difference. Easy enough, right?
Then why don’t we do it??? Once we know what to do it is just a matter of doing it, right? But no, it isn’t because we don’t. The easiest example of this is diet and exercise. We know what we have to do to be healthy; eat right and move our bodies. Simple. Yet the diet industry is making BILLIONS on us as we continue to reach for that magic bullet, pill, patch, shake…you name it we will try it until it causes discomfort. Ahhh…what do we have here? We are game until we are uncomfortable, feeling deprived and battling that war within, that wants that pint of ice cream more than we want that healthy body in that moment. I know this first-hand as I have had many starts and stops in my life and many of the stops have purely been because in that moment of weakness I forgot the intention, the reason…that moment of self-indulgence proved more valuable than the intention to begin with thwarting my efforts and sending me into the failure funnel yet again.
if you want the reward you have to be willing to do the work, sacrifice and be uncomfortable. This applies to everything and everyone that has ever set an intention, made a plan and executed. What I know about going to war to get what you want is that sometimes it downright sucks! Long nights studying for that test, early mornings to get a walk or run in, feeling hungry after eating your measured portion…it all can suck, but if it wasn’t for the process there would be no reward. We learn the most from these journey’s and we become our own hero in the process and ultimately in the end the one you are looking up to is yourself because YOU did the work!
This next quote was too powerful to let go and boy do I know a thing about this both good and bad. When we are preparing to go to war or find ourselves at peace it is how we treat ourselves that can make all the difference. So often we are affected more by what other people say about us rather than what we say about ourselves. I was most famous for this when I was overweight. I have always been quite the comedian or so I thought, and so I was quick to make fun of myself. Some would call this self-degrading however I didn’t see it that way. I chose to believe that I was just making fun of myself because I was comfortable with myself however what I would come to learn was that it was a defensive mechanism. I was actually saying what I thought other people were thinking before they could say it. In the meantime, I was tearing away my self-esteem little by little. Here is my advice:
- Be careful what you say because you might just believe it.
- Don’t say “I can’t…” but instead turn it around and note what you can do.
- Don’t tell on yourself, maybe no one is actually thinking those things you are trying to deflect.
- Don’t let your mind “think” you into failure. Thoughts are going to come but it is our responsibility to ourselves to decide if we react to those thoughts or move them on.
- Turn those thoughts around…I told you recently about what I do when I am running and my mind wants me to stop. I take an inventory from the soles of my feat to the tip of my head to see if everything is feeling okay and then decide if I will stop or keep running. Most of the time I keep running and the thought passes and with it the sensation that it was directing.
I used to believe in the theory that “you can do anything you put your mind to” but have learned otherwise throughout my life. What you can do is create intentions, make a plan and execute that plan. If you fail, stop and evaluate the lessons learned and then adjust the intention, make a new plan and execute. I am not afraid to fail but I do believe in failing fast. I don’t wait for the writing to be on the wall before changing the plan; not in my personal or professional life.
Last but not least, David Goggins wrote an entire chapter on being “uncommon among uncommon”. I relate to this as I have had one of the most unconventional journey’s of those that are crossing the same FINISH LINES as myself. There was a time that I was embarrassed by those uncommon approaches taken however I realize more every single day that I am at peace because I went through so many wars and in those wars got battle scars that truly make me who I am today. What I tell myself today is that I am strong, I am successful and I am always going to win because I am not afraid to fail. I leave you with another favorite quote of mine…