In my sophomore year of college, one of my closest friends opted to forgo school and give the military a shot. Josh and I grew up together, starting out in soccer, before we quickly learned that football was our true calling. Neither of us had played pop warner, but we loved the game so much that in the summer before our freshman year, we made a pack to give it a shot. We were both small – around 5’6’’ and a mere 140 pounds, not hardly the linebacker physique, still we were determined to prove our naysayers wrong. So, we turned to weight training and luckily for us, the owner of the gym was a former Navy Seal who appreciated our commitment and decided to mentor us.
He taught us how to nourish our bodies, build our strength, stretch our endurance; still, it was his focus on our mental preparation that made the biggest difference. It was he who first introduced us to the phrase ‘mind as a weapon’ and we needed every bit of that mental resilience to fulfill our dream. It was during that summer that I had a hunch that one day, Josh would one day would become a Seal; and his quest started six years later when he decided to leave George Mason University. Josh had a remarkable experience, and is a constant reminder for me as to why SEALS are a special breed. Another former Seal, Mark Divine writes in his book – The Way of the SEAL: Think Like an Elite Warrior to Lead and Succeed – that ‘if you lack an underlying commitment to self-mastery and growth, even the best theory won’t help you lead yourself or a team to success.’ Here’s why …..