By Darrel Wang
When I think back to the days that my old man used to be a book full of cliché quotes, I typically chuckle and brush it off. However, there are a few that have stuck with me… especially on the topic of grit and willpower.
One of my favorites goes like this: “Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.” Man. How can a statement be so true? You’re telling me that talent exists? It’s not all hard work that gets you to where you are? Some people are born naturally gifted? The answer: yes.
A great example that I can think of is the mindset necessary to try out for any Special Operations/Special Forces selection pipeline. It’s not typically the strongest and fastest that make it through the training… it’s the ones who have accumulated mental fortitude beyond their time. The ones who come back after getting their teeth kicked in… over and over again. These folks eat knuckle sandwiches for 3 out of 3 meals of the day and smile while they’re dining. Why? Because they know, in the grand scheme of things, that the payout is totally and unarguably worth it.
The funny thing about grit and willpower is that you can train this yourself. Think of the one thing that you don’t want to see during the workout of the day. We all have it. For me, it’s any workout with high amounts of ring muscle ups. Not because they’re a highly-skilled movement or that a high volume of them may mess up the way my hair sits on my noggin (voted the best hair in the unit 2 years runnin’ you all), but because I am so terrible at them. But you will never hear me bitch, scream, moan, or gripe about having to do them. At some point (better sooner than later), you have to attack your weaknesses, or they’ll hunt you down, break your legs, and steal your girlfriend. The biggest part is having the willpower to accept that circumstances, for now, will suck. But I can assure you this — it gets better.
This is my challenge to you: Spend 15 minutes with that external or internal demon. Physiological or psychological need not matter so long as you are fighting the fight.
“Nobody is coming to save you. Get off the floor and save yourself.” -Brenden Dilley