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Calgunners in Service This forum is a place for our active duty and deployed members to share, request and have a bit of home where ever they are.

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  #1  
Old 04-27-2011, 10:54 PM
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Default Advice on how to build mental toughness

Hello,

I'm attending a upcoming police academy. And i was advised by my friend whos in the previous class to train like a ' SF Soldier' He was a 18B prior U.S ARMY SF. So i trust his advice on this. I was wondering what books or training can you suggest for mental preparation? I know their will be alot of mind games and constant smoking.. I've seen books like Andy Mcnab's SAS mental endurance book, read a preview seems pretty much worthless. Then i read a preview of Stew Smiths books, seemed pretty decent.

Last edited by Tacit Blue; 04-27-2011 at 10:59 PM..
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Old 04-28-2011, 9:11 AM
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It's easy. Don't quit. Things may suck now. Things may suck a week from now, but it will eventually end. Embrace the suck. Love the suck. Do your best. Don't quit.

I don't see how a book is going to give you mental toughness. It's all about you and how bad you want something. Plain and simple.
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Old 04-28-2011, 9:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lost View Post
It's easy. Don't quit. Things may suck now. Things may suck a week from now, but it will eventually end. Embrace the suck. Love the suck. Do your best. Don't quit.

I don't see how a book is going to give you mental toughness. It's all about you and how bad you want something. Plain and simple.

Excellent advice. One other thing, is prepare your mind to overcome the idea that you may think something will end when you reach X. These programs are designed to see how you handle mental strain and just when you think you've finished a cycle, they'll tell you to keep moving you're not done. For many people, that one thing can cause them to throw in the towel and quit. Even tho the exercise is actually done.
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Old 04-28-2011, 11:33 AM
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looks like i made a duplicate, please delete.
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Old 04-28-2011, 11:42 AM
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Different answers in each thread, personally, I'd try and have them merged. I apologize for not seeing the other one if that was getting answers first.

Also, were/are you military? I ask, mainly because of your avatar and this seems like a silly question coming from anyone that's served.

Or were you with Northrop Grumman? Interesting username. Had to look it up. Just wondering how you came about it.
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Old 04-28-2011, 11:50 AM
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I worked at General Atomics producer of the MQ-9 Predator. The name being a grandfather program used to demonstrate its potential
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Old 04-28-2011, 11:55 AM
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Cool stuff! I was looking at maybe moving into the UAV/SUAS arena. I have some experience and I realize the huge potential in it and it won't be going away anytime soon.

Good luck with the Academy. I know the one up here is run like boot camp/basic training.
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Old 04-28-2011, 11:58 AM
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If your in the San Diego area, shoot me an pm i'll guide you in the right direction for a job. General Atomics is a great company to work for


Last edited by Tacit Blue; 04-28-2011 at 12:04 PM..
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Old 04-28-2011, 12:07 PM
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Live with a Liberal for a few months. That should do it.
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Old 04-28-2011, 12:08 PM
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Beautiful pic!
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Old 05-01-2011, 7:30 AM
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All things will come to an end eventually just keep driving on take it one day at a time
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Old 05-10-2011, 1:30 AM
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Just remember, pain doesn't last forever. You can die from staying awake so eventually it will be time to sleep and they know that and they will let you sleep, enjoy it.
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Old 06-30-2011, 3:56 PM
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Skydive, if you can compelte a skydive training course you can accomplish anything you set your mind to.
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Old 06-30-2011, 5:56 PM
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Step 1: Go to chowhall
Step 2: Get Straw
Step 3: Suck it up


Seriously though, the academy isnt designed to break you, its designed to build and test you. Just push yourself further than you have in the past and you'll be fine.
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Old 06-30-2011, 7:13 PM
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"Pain is temporary. Quitting lasts forever."
— Lance Armstrong
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Old 06-30-2011, 7:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cobra Tactical View Post
Skydive, if you can compelte a skydive training course you can accomplish anything you set your mind to.
Meh, skydiving is easy. The very hardest thing to do is to let go of the plane, and by then you're already committed. Piece of cake.
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Old 06-30-2011, 9:25 PM
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Yeah dude....No book can "prep" you for anything. You just have to go out and do it yourself. If you REALLY want to accomplish something, you'd be surprised at how far your brain can push you. It's not physical, its all mental.
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Old 07-01-2011, 10:49 AM
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Go get a "I love guns shirt" and walk through Berkley passing out NRA material.


prepare to be bombarded with verbal insults

Your mental toughness will increase
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Old 07-03-2011, 1:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tacit Blue View Post
If your in the San Diego area, shoot me an pm i'll guide you in the right direction for a job. General Atomics is a great company to work for

PM sent...
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  #20  
Old 07-03-2011, 8:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daveinwoodland View Post
Live with a Liberal for a few months. That should do it.
Agreed.
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Old 07-06-2011, 6:14 PM
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When it gets tough, you can always find a guy you look at and say if he can keep going I will not quit. Take on the task at hand and don't focus on the I can't do this anymore, you can and they know you can. That is why it is mental toughness, you have to seperate the pain from the task and realize everyone around you feels what you feel and they are still going. Don't quit. That's all you need to know.
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Old 07-06-2011, 6:19 PM
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Mind over matter.
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Old 07-06-2011, 6:29 PM
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This won't necessarily help you "get through" the academy but it's some fascinating research on the psychology/physiological effects of deadly conflict, the limits/potential of the human mind and what-not.
www.warriorsciencegroup.com
Lt. Col Dave Grossman has done some really good research and training on the human mind. One of his more popular books is "On Combat" and I highly recommend that.

Like I prefaced the above with, reading that book won't be the make-or-break foundation for success at the academy but it's an important part of learning how we operate under stress/threats/fatigue.
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Old 07-06-2011, 6:36 PM
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You really think you can build mental focus and toughness in a short time? IMHO short term gains will disappear quickly under pressure.
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Old 07-06-2011, 7:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaysponger View Post
Mind over matter.
Yup... If u don't mind, it don't matter...
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Old 07-06-2011, 7:21 PM
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Do or do not, there is no try
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Old 07-06-2011, 8:57 PM
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remember pain is just weakness leaving the body
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Old 07-08-2011, 1:39 PM
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Take everything in stride because everything is a game. You want to win, but even when you make a mistake just do your best and live with it. Often things will not be within your realm of control so don't stress over them.

It's the physical toughness that takes a lot of work.
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Old 07-08-2011, 4:35 PM
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Unless you've faced a reasonable amount of physical and mental adversity, chances are you're going to be lacking in the mental toughness area. That's why I don't think it's necessarily some kind of genetic trait but is learned through experience. I was FAR more mentally tough by my sixth year in the Army versus the first or second. Much of that came from pushing through physical and mental limits induced during training.

The first time I did a 12 mile road march in full gear I was definitely challenged. When I hit a wall half way through my mind was yelling at me to slow down, but knowing that I needed to meet time standards, I kept pushing. Unfortunately I pushed myself to the point of injury in the end, but I got a little taste of the reality that your body can go further than your mind.

Jumping forward a few years I was faced with a much more difficult challenge, but this time I was more prepared because I'd already faced similar challenges on a smaller scale and understood how to pace myself physically, how to not let my pain and discomfort sap my motivation, etc. Over time I had developed mental tools to help get me through the challenge. The simplest was breaking up the overall massive challenge into small, digestible pieces. For example, I'd set my immediate goals into something relatively quick to accomplish such as "okay, I just need to make it to this next point" instead of "I've got to get all 9 points before sun-up...ahhhh!" Another thing is to focus your mind elsewhere. Because this particular challenge would be a major accomplishment with a ceremony and pride, when I felt like I was near the breaking point I would just visualize myself at the graduation ceremony, being one of the few who were selected, etc. This would help get me just a little bit farther, while focusing instead on the negative things like "my ****ing feet are bleeding!" and "I could quit and bit warm and relaxed back at the barracks" would just cause me to slow down and get frustrated with myself.

It's difficult to trick yourself like that for a long time and it also helps to be in a team of people who can help motivate you or take your mind off of things, but sometimes it's just you for as far as you can see.

Lastly, the most important thing I learned with experience that became my own mental toughness mantra is: "All suffering is tolerable when you know that it's temporary." That right there made all the difference for me down the road when faced with physical and mental challenges. It forced me to literally give every ounce I had to complete the mission, knowing that once complete I'd finally be able to relax and feel accomplished.
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Old 07-08-2011, 4:42 PM
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Mental toughness comes from overcoming true adversity - physical and mental. You can't really teach it and to some degree you have it or you do not, but you can certainly get better at it through life experiences you choose to get involved in (say athletic pursuits or the military) and those that life throws you (say a bad accident and having to overcome extreme losses or ailments).

I thrive on mental toughness as part of my being and +20 years of hard competitive racing endeavors all over the world and challenging myself physically with these events coupled with some tragic or near tragic personal events in my life have really shown to me I possess this strength to a good degree and I value it deeply & respect it.

I also find, I seek out ways to continually challenge myself to make sure it is still there as having that mental fortitude is something I fear losing, so I push myself often into events or races or activities that are extreme to some - like running the R2R2R - just to see if I can pull through and as my buddy jokingly says "still have it".
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