Do you sustain or crack under pressure? Can everyday situations bring your energy down?
People are not born with mental strength. It takes years of practise and resilience to become mentally tough. Mental toughness is all about how well you can control your emotions, thoughts, attitudes and actions when under pressure. Here are 6 ways to become mentally strong.
#1. Practise the 2 Minute Rule
In his book “Ground Zero Leadership: CEO of You” Andrew D. Wittman talks about the 2-minute rule. Wittman, who is a former US Marine now trains individuals and organizations in mental toughness. He says anytime you are faced with a stressful situation, you should practise the two-minute rule i.e. spend two minutes thinking about how you would deal with the situation ahead of you. This can help your brain come up with good ideas.
#2. Reframe Your Negative Thoughts
Our brains are often shrouded with negative thoughts but mentally strong people don’t let such thoughts stay for long or hold them back. So, next time such thoughts cross your mind, have a good inner dialogue with yourself and stay motivated. You can also talk to a mentor or a good friend who can help you come out of such state.
#3. Work Towards Established Goals
Establish a goal or purpose, both personal and professional that can give some meaning to your life. Mentally strong people are willing to give up immediate gratification by focusing on their long-term objectives. Know that any obstacles you are facing are just roadblocks to your success and by consistent effort, you will achieve your goals one day.
#4. Don’t Give Away Your Power
It is easy to shirk away responsibility by blaming other people for certain situations or how we behaved at some point. But this is not something mentally strong people practise. According to psychotherapist Amy Morin, mentally strong people do not give away their power. You are the one responsible for your emotions and in control of how you feel and react towards people. Nobody can make you mad and drive you crazy. It is your choice as to how you react and act. There are consequences to everything, so whatever choice you make, be ready to face the consequences.
#5. Balance emotions
Your feelings play a great role in determining your behaviour and perceptions. Play close attention to emotions while making a decision. Carefully balance emotions with logic to avoid making wrong choices. For example, you might be so excited with an opportunity that you don’t see the risks associated with it. Or you miss a great chance because you were anxious. Mentally tough people can balance emotions with logic and make sound decisions.
#6. Take Responsibility
Mentally strong people take responsibility for their actions and don’t make excuses for blame someone else. Stop resenting someone else’s success and stop making excuses. Next time you find yourself making an excuse for blaming someone else, start keeping a count of same. If it happens very often, you know something must be changed. Start owning up your mistakes and fix them rather than just wallow in self-pity or finding a scapegoat for the same.