How to Be Mentally Strong
Happy Thursday friends. It always seems like such an accomplishment to get to this point of the week and I do not think that will every change. Maybe it’s because I realize how much I’ve accomplished by Thursday or maybe it’s because the weekend starts tonight by eating dinner and grabbing drinks with friends.
Thoughts of unwinding aside, I wanted to broach the topic of mental strength and toughness today. I talk a lot about diet, nutrition and all things food but I want to bring some light on the mental side of things. While I have some practical tips below, know that I am not perfect and work day in and day out to be as mentally strong as possible, growing with each day and with each experience.
Being mentally strong can be the difference between being successful or missing your goals. So start today with trying one of my tips to be as mentally strong as possible and share some of your tips in the comments below!
**Note: I’ve been known to throw a “Sassy Fit” before and I can guarantee it’s when I am run down mentally, physically and emotionally so if I am not sleeping, eating right or working on myself enough, a breakdown is inevitable, that’s why I work on all my tips below to be the most mentally tough I can be. #ithappens
Sassy’s 7 Tips to become Mentally Strong:
- Find your motivation: When I ask my clients what their goals are whether for nutrition or exercise, a lot of times it is very superficial. It normally has to do with weight, pant size, PRs in the gym etc. While these are great goals to have they normally are not enough for us. We need to know not just WHAT we want to accomplish but WHY we want to accomplish them.
For some, that motivation is family related, others it’s health related and the list goes on. Find your motivation and use it. When it becomes hard to stick to your diet or finish that last set of burpees, remember your motivation and keep going.
- Manage your expectations: I’ll never forget when I broke down completely after a swim race in high school and my mom told me I was overreacting (which of course only made me overreact more.) When I finally came to my senses, she explained to me that you have to not make the highs so high or the lows so low.
What did she mean? She meant that I could celebrate my successes but not put them on a pedestal and that I could grieve the losses but not let them consume me. It’s important to learn from each experience and find the good in it, no matter what.
- Learn to be comfortable being uncomfortable. Sometimes you need to suck it up. Find ways to push yourself, not in a way that puts you in danger or causes anxiety but in a way that makes you stronger. Remember the last time you accomplished a big goal? Was the journey uncomfortable? But was it worth it? Get comfortable outside of your comfort zone, that’s where growth is realized. It won’t be easy but it will be worth it.
Try each and every day something that makes you uncomfortable. Maybe if you are nervous public speaking you can try and talk in front of a few friends or coworkers on a topic you love or maybe you hate squatting but want to get better, squat more! Push yourself and suck it up!
- Let go of the word “can’t”. This word and just being negative in general can have such a huge impact on us and our lives. Stop using this word all together. You CAN it’s just a matter of if you WILL. Instead say, “I’m not sure if I can do this YET but I want to someday and I will!”.
- Practice Patience. This is a big one, and one that I have to continually work on. When you don’t succeed or you’re having a rough day, take a step back and realize nothing happens overnight. Give yourself a pat on the back for all you have accomplished and know that good things come to those who wait but even better things come to those who hustle and never give up!
- Zone in but Zone Out. A lot of times people ask me how I got through a workout without stopping or how I went so fast. I tell them I zoned out. This is a trick I learned through swimming. Set your eye on the prize (see Tip #1), know that you are going to be uncomfortable (Tip #3) and once you have zoned in on that you can zone out and get through the hard parts. Focus on your WHY instead of the pain, sing a song in your head or work on just completely letting your mind go blank.
- Take a deep breath and don’t take it so personal. When things get tough whether physically, mentally or emotionally, take a deep breath, count to three and move forward. When you don’t accomplish something or you feel like you are up against the world, don’t take it so personal, instead look at it as a challenge, set your motivations and persevere.
Alright, that’s all I have for you today. Check out this great Ted Talk about Mental Toughness.
Go be amazing and remember sometimes you just have to suck it up!
JC Sheppard says
Excellent advice. I wish I’d learned this lesson sooner. Thanks Sassy!