I finished three audiobooks this month. The most recent one I completed within 24 hours, and after I had listened once, I started it again. It’s called Relentless: From Good to Great to Unstoppable. This book was recommended to me by a good friend (a successful, high performer) after having many conversations about bettering ourselves. The book is written by Tim Grover, the coach of Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, and Dwayne Wade. He wasn’t the team coach; he was their personal coach. He didn’t sign up to be a life coach; he signed up to train professional athletes. He evolved into their life coach because of trust and his ability to prepare them mentally and how that translated to every part of their lives.
In this post, I want to open your mind to being mentally fit. Tim Grover calls the drive relentless. I call the drive devotion. The word relentless sounds so ruthless, though it means nonstop persistence. Devotion sounds noble and also means nonstop persistence. Being mentally fit means having control over your thoughts and actions all the time. Mentally fit means being resilient and recognizing when to change and then changing. No questions. No emotions. Identify what needs to change. Do it. Move on to the next. It means being devoted. It means being relentless.
You can’t be physically fit without mental fitness. I started running around my block when I was 12 or 13. My block was 1.2 miles. I remember my childhood friend would ask to stop and we would stop and walk. I decided to go on my own, and I told myself, don’t stop. I didn’t stop. That’s the first time I learned that running was mental. The challenge increased. Joia, don’t stop during three miles, then five miles. And now I’m a five-time marathoner. To become physically fit, to get anything you want in life, you need to be mentally fit.
You need to face the challenge, push yourself out of your comfort zone and learn to stay with the uncomfortable feelings until it's done.
Most people quit (whatever they are doing) when it starts to feel uncomfortable. That’s when it gets real. Whether it produces fear, doubt, or worry, these things are mental weakness taking control of your thoughts and actions. We all feel fear, doubt, and worry; this is not unique to you. The ones who succeed at their goals are the one who proceeds through the fear anyway. They have mental fitness to know that the uncomfortable is only temporary. They know the fear will pass. They know that by enduring, success will come.
When I find a challenge that scares me, I ask, “what would devotion do?” If I am devoted, what would I do? By asking what devotion would do helps me stay honest with myself. This question helps weed through the trivial time wasting tasks. If devotion wouldn’t do it, then I won’t do it. Devotion helps me show up, be prepared, work hard, listen, learn, and stay focused. In the book, Tim Grover talks about being relentless in the same way; show up, work hard, and listen. Maybe your word isn’t relentless or devotion. Think about what your word is, the word that describes your drive. Is it more light-hearted, like joy, love, or enthusiasm, or something a little more hardcore like the Marine Corps motto, always faithful? Whatever drives you, LISTEN TO IT. Obey it.
I give my examples so you can see that this is something that is humanly possible. If it’s possible for me to train my mind to overcome challenges, then it’s possible for you. It’s possible for you to change your life, become healthy, and live out your dreams. You will be scared; you’ll be uncomfortable, withstand pressure, get dirty, but all of that will pass, and success will be waiting for you. You will fail, you will mess up, you will have setbacks. Failing is a part of the learning process. It’s a part of achieving success.
How you do one thing in life, is how you do everything.
I wish you a wonderful week full of drive. Be well, show up, work hard, and listen.