Marcus Aurelius, a former Roman Emperor, once said: “You have power over your mind, not outside events. Realise this, and you will find strength,”. When it comes to dealing with issues surrounding your daily life, having mental strength helps you make the right choice. It also helps you get through difficult obstacles. Do you know when people say if you put your mind to it, you will succeed? Well, all of that requires mental strength. In this article, Glitz is breaking down everything you need to know about mental strength and how to obtain it. If that’s something that intrigues you then keep on reading!
What Is Mental Strength?
First and foremost, we would like to explain to you what mental strength actually is. Now, we’re pretty sure you’re familiar with physical strength. You know, the one you go to your gym for. But mental strength is your mind’s strength, and typically takes on a more different approach when building it up.
But to be honest, all of us have demonstrated mental strength one way or another some time in our lives. Let me give you an example of my personal mental strength experience. It happened when I was hiking up Mount Kinabalu in Malaysia. I’m not the fittest person in all honesty, so I had no proper prior hiking training before this. Throughout the two-day hike, I almost gave up three times. But what kept me going was my mental strength to succeed and complete the hike. All I did was to keep telling myself that I could do it – and I did! That was when I realised that being mentally strong can overpower your physical weakness.
Take five minutes to think back to a moment where you demonstrated mental strength. Can you remember what you did or how it felt like? Well, if you’re keen to feel like that again and to harness your mental strength, then keep reading as we list down some ways you can do so.
How Can You Build Up Your Mental Strength?
1. Turn the negatives into positives
As you go through obstacles in your life, it is normal to face fear. Fear can come in many different ways. Sometimes fear comes because you’re watching a scary movie. Other times, fear comes in the form of doubts and negative thoughts. These doubts and negative thoughts weaken your mental strength and deter you from being your best self. Now if you turn those negative thoughts into positive ones, you will be able to build up your mental strength and confidence.
Every time you start to think “I can’t do it” or “This is not going to work”, start turning those into something more positive instead. Say “I’m going to find a way to do it” or “It is going to work when I put my mind to it”. Positive affirmations in your mind will help you build up your mental strength and not give up because of doubts.
2. Think of the bigger picture
We all do things in life for a reason. You study hard because you want that scholarship. And you put all your heart and soul into your work in order to have a better future. But throughout your journey, you will eventually face uncomfortable situations or challenges. These situations or challenges might make you want to give up. But this is where your mental strength comes into play.
Stop thinking of the discomfort that you are feeling right now and start thinking of the bigger picture. Remember your end goals and keep striving for them. In due course, you will power through the temporary discomfort, and eventually, you will know how to conquer any similar situations in the future.
3. The 10-minute rule
When you feel lazy or unproductive throughout the day, having mental strength can help you push through that. However, mental strength doesn’t appear instantly when you want it to. This is why we want to teach you a great rule that you can apply to your lives starting today. So, there’s this thing called the 10-minute rule. It’s basically a rule you use when you feel demotivated or in simpler terms, lazy.
Let’s say you were supposed to clean the house but your body feels exhausted from what you think is a lack of sleep. Try to get started on your chores for 10 minutes. If you still feel tired after the 10 minutes then you probably are lacking in sleep. However, if you’re still going after 10 minutes, then your mental strength has powered through the demotivating feeling. Oftentimes, getting started is the harder part than actually doing the work. So don’t give up!
4. Plan and prepare
Being mentally strong does not mean you have to torture yourself every day. Some people think that having tough days every day is good because it promotes mental strength. But in reality, having mental strength does not mean struggling through your whole life. If you can plan and prepare ahead, then why not?
If you have a meeting coming up, then plan the points you would like to present in the meeting. If you are supposed to wake up for a run in the morning then get your workout clothes ready the night before. Planning and preparing your days can help you in the long run when it comes to building up your mental strength.
5. List out reasons and learn from them
Failure is inevitable in life, but it isn’t a bad thing. However, it can be a bad thing if you find excuses for failing and then push your failure under the carpet. So the next time you fail or did not manage to achieve your goals, list out the reasons instead. If you can’t seem to find the reasons why then try asking people for help.
When you list down the reasons for why you failed, chances are you will remember these reasons and not repeat them in the future. This ensures that you do not fail over the same or similar things in the long run. If you’re wondering where does mental strength play a part in this? Well, it takes mental strength to explain why you did what you did and learn from them.
6. Prove yourself wrong
Sometimes the biggest critic in your life is yourself. Many times we do not do things because we tell ourselves that we cannot. Well, if you want to build your mental strength, then try going against yourself. Prove yourself wrong by doing what you said you cannot.
Go for that morning run, prove yourself wrong by waking up early. Or hit that monthly target you said was too difficult to hit. You would be surprised at how capable you are of achieving these things. And because we are human, once we start hitting all these goals, we would tend to want to do it again. So go for it! Push yourself and make sure to give yourself the credit you deserve.