This past weekend, was a test of my mental toughness.
I was a chaperone for one of my children’s class trip. It was an overnight stay on a battleship.
Mental Toughness – Battleship in Camden, NJ
The trip as a whole was very interesting but the downside was that we were to sleep in the navy bunks. If you have never seen what this looks like you need to go see them.
You want me to sleep where???
Imagine a 6-foot-high and 6 or 7 feet wide and about 3 feet deep metal filing cabinet where the drawers are all removed. This was what we “slept” in (I don’t think anyone actually slept).
The big metal hatch I was afraid of tripping over.
I chose the middle bunk. The bottom bunk looked like a hole and the top bunk look very challenging to maneuver getting up and down in the middle of the night for my potty runs ;-).
Getting into the middle bunk was equally challenging. I had to lift my leg up about waist high (thank goodness for that ballet training) while holding onto the bunk above and the bunk across form me (yes, the bunks were really that close to each other). Once I slung my leg up, I would quickly change hands to a pull up position holding onto the bunk above me (if I had let go I would have landed head first into the steel floor). Once in the bunk, I had an extra 2 inches to turn my body around. When I laid down on my back I could bend my knees only half way up before they hit the top of my bunk.
Now, I am a pretty small person and I can feel claustrophobic. I cannot imagine anyone even slightly taller or wider than me getting into this bunk and not feeling stuffed into the bunk. Needless to say, I did not get much sleep on the class trip.
After having this experience, it made me have a deeper level of appreciation for our navy and all the other areas of military. Not only do they put our lives on the line for our country but it’s not like they are living it up with their living quarters.
One lil’ locker ladies!
Did I mention that the filing cabinet bunks are jam-packed into a tiny space so about 30 -50 people are sleeping in one room and you get one tiny locker for your stuff?
You must have mental toughness to join the navy. It’s not like they work hard all day then get to relax in a comfy recliner and watch tv. How many times have you given in to a doughnut but kept saying to yourself “You know this is not going to help you reach your goals” and you eat it anyway. Or you sleep in instead of getting up and completing your workout?? Having some mental toughness will help you achieve your goals instead of continuing to spin your wheels month after month (and year after year).
Mental Toughness Doesn’t Just Happen
It’s a skill just like any exercise or movement. The best thing is if you don’t have it you can get it!
Here’s Some Ways To Increase Mental Toughness:
Increase Your Confidence
Practice makes perfect. I tell this to my kids all the time “If you aren’t good at something …how do you get better?” By practicing. Not once or twice. But over and over and over….and over! When you start out, you won’t be very good and that is okay. But what happens when you repeat anything…. you begin to get better…and better. While you are getting better, your confidence is also coming up. A great example would be when you are faced with a sugary treat (if this is a weakness of yours) …every time you say no or pass on that treat it will get easier to skip it. Here’s another example for the non-sugar addicts….Let’s take pushups. If you start out doing a push up on the wall and you do some every day eventually you will progress to on the floor on your knees and down the line you will get on your toes for a full push up.
Embrace Your Responsibility
We all have different roles in our life. Whether your role is mother, grandmom, mentor, caretaker etc. We all have “job” descriptions. One of the most important one is being a caretaker…..for YOURSELF! It is your responsibility to take of yourself. Nobody else can do it for you. Instead of fighting against your body, work with it! Make a list of all the things you need to do to keep yourself healthy.
It could be:
Go for a walk today
Eat a handful of vegetable in three meals
Talk nice to yourself (click here to read more about that)
Whatever your responsibilities are to yourself treat them like “it’s your job” because lives depend on it…your life, your kids’ lives, your spouses’ life, etc. These people in your life need you to be healthy so you can be the best version of yourself. It is not an option to NOT take care of yourself. It is irresponsible. No matter what your beliefs, you were given an awesome gift…your body. Do not let it go to waste.
You Are Not An Island
People surrounds us every day. Get to know your fellow humans. We were meant to bond with people. When you are embarking on a weight loss journey, you need support. Having social support will help you increase your mental toughness. We all have moments of weakness or just need to lean on someone. Have a strong support system surrounding you. Choose your circle wisely. Surround yourself with people who support and care for you.
To Fail Is To Take A Step Closer To Success
When you were a baby, you learned to walk and I am sure you fell A LOT. Once you fell your little baby brain said “okay let’s not do that again! Let’s try another way”. As a baby, your mental toughness is on point! When you fail, learn from it and improve. Strive to achieve your goal (whatever your goal may be).
We ALL fail one time or another. If you are giving it your best and if you aren’t failing than you aren’t trying!
Are you ready to improve your mental toughness and become the best version of yourself?? Click here to get your 20 minute consult with me today!
Since 2006, Nicole Simonin has been a Certified Personal Trainer and owner of Shape It Up, LLC. Nicole is recognized for her well-rounded approach to fitness. Through private and online personal training, Nicole motivates, educates and inspires women to get fit and healthy. Her passion is to empower busy women to not only get fit but to be fierce in life and have no limits as to what can be accomplished. Click here to work with Nicole as your personal trainer.