Do you falter when you encounter difficulty and adversity?
Do you crumble at the first sign of resistance from others?
Do you give up at your first attempt at trying something new?
Do you worry and stress your way through each day?
Or are you mentally tough?
Being mentally tough is about resisting the urge to give up in the face of failure, to maintain your focus and resolve in pursuit of your goals, and to keep on going even when you feel you have nothing left ‘in the tank’ all of which enables you to emerge from adversity even stronger than before.
Almost everyone can benefit from being mentally tougher and here are 4 simple and practical tips to use:
Choose your state
You have a choice and the best choice is to switch on every day to being positive and thinking optimistically. Being positive frames your day, and everything that happens within the day, in a more optimistic light. Setbacks and problems lose their drama to merely become situations to be dealt with, or often, opportunities to be seized. If you don’t choose your state, your state chooses you and it will be neutral or more likely negative.
Develop your resolve
Everyday there is push back from all sources and directions that stops you doing what you want to do. Some of it is sensible feedback and advice, which you take on its merits. However, the vast majority of push back comes from external friction or distractions or your own internal mental obstacles that temper your ability to make things happen. Becoming resolute and determined to keep your goals and targets and not giving up or backing down, is an essential part of being mentally tough.
The father of Positive Psychology, Professor Martin Seligman comments:
“People who don’t give up have a habit of interpreting setbacks as temporary, local and changeable”.
When such individuals encounter adversity, they think to themselves: “It’s going away quickly; it’s just this one situation, and I can do something about it.”
Control what you can control
At any give time we face a range of problems and situations and some we have control over and others we don’t. Ideally where we can control the outcome we want to reflect and act on genuine concerns and problems. Similarly where we can’t affect or influence the outcome we shouldn’t dramatize or accentuate the situations and let our negative feelings and emotions spiral out of control into “catastrophic thinking”. We should control what is within our control and not worry about what we can’t control.
Learn to spot the good stuff
Use your positive outlook to spot and appreciate the ways that you are fortunate and over time this “gratitude” creates an internal sense that you aren’t a victim or poorly done by. The good stuff is almost always freely generated by nature, a sunset or a bird’s early morning chorus, or by other people.
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