Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Advantage of Adversity Pt 2

Teammates, this bears repeating: you can’t learn the confidence adversity teaches you in a classroom or from a book – you can’t fake it – you learn it from experience – there’s no short cut – period.

Six weeks before I started Hellweek I was getting to know my classmates. One classmate – let’s call him Schmuckatelli -- was boasting about how he was going to “smoke” Hellweek (smoke = ace it) because for the last 2 years he had been taking cold showers (I’m not kidding) and Hellweek is about being cold, therefore he proclaimed he was more than ready for Hellweek … well Schmuckatelli didn’t even make it to Hellweek – he quit 3 weeks into training. My point, you are only as strong (mentally and physically) as the adversity you have overcome. In SEAL Team we live by this correlation, it’s our secret weapon to success, which is why we used to lose more SEALs in training than in war. Recent events have unfortunately reversed this statistic – and it’s not that we’re proud to admit we lose teammates in training - but rather it’s our willingness to embrace adversity with the knowledge that Nietzsche has so succinctly summed up: “that which does not kill you makes you stronger”. Nietzsche's statement is a window into SEAL confidence that has been built through their personal experience of overcoming the adversity of Hellweek. And it only gets stronger as the candidates are tested with more challenging adversities, and, by the way, it’s what makes SEALs so exceptional at what they do.

So what’s this all mean to you? Simply this: adversity and the struggles and hardships that come with it make you stronger – they will empower you to get what you want out of life. If it were easy, everyone would do it, but you’re not just anyone, you’re on a mission – a mission after your dreams, your goals – a mission to maximize your life.

So the next time adversity comes knocking, welcome it and then knock it back with a vengeance of persistent action so overwhelming that any future adversities that come down your path are no longer considered adversities, they’re treated as opportunities to excel. This, my teammates, is the advantage of adversity.

Go challenge yourself!


Picture of the Great Wall of China courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net


Unknown said...


MadMaxMMAon twitter.

Nancy B. said...

Seeing the picture of The Great Wall of China brought to mind my daughter's college swim coach who ran a marathon there last year.She finished first in her"age group".
And now she has qualified for the Iron Man in October. Plus she accomplished all this while getting her PhD.!
Quite a role model for my daughter and her swim teammates.
Thanks for all of your ongoing enthusiasm and words of encouargement.
Nancy B

Marvin said...

I've often made it my goal to avoid uncomfortable situations in marriage and parenting. Thanks for the reminder to embrace difficulty as a method of making progress.