One aspect of life that will always remain a constant is that it will always challenge you. That’s just part of the journey, friends, and if you aren’t tough – life will eat you up.
I’m not talking about being physically tough, any ogre can pull that off. I am talking about mental toughness.
The traits of your personality that afford for thicker skin and shorter memories, which in my opinion are all you need to get through this life a happy, fulfilled, and well-rounded person.
These are my personal traits of mental toughness that we should all aspire to:
1. Pick your Battles
Some things in life you’ve just got to let go. If every little stimulus gets your hackles up, then guess what: you spend your life fighting. Even if you happen to be a third-world warlord, constant conflict isn’t something that makes for a productive life.
2. Judge Not, lest you be Judged
Instead of focusing your magnifying glass on everyone in your life, why not turn it into a mirror? If you want everyone around you to let you be yourself, then let them be themselves.
3. Don’t be Afraid to Ask for Help
Even the mightiest people you’ve even encountered in your life all need help at some point. Superman needed Lois Lane. Batman needed Robin. Bert Needed Ernie. Let go of your pride, and ask for help when you need it.
Holding on to grudges is like holding on to poison. Let it go. Forgiveness is the antidote to hate.
5. Accept Criticism
The second that you think you are above criticism is the second that you quit growing as a person. Growth comes from stripping away your personal preconceptions of yourself just like pruning a tree helps it grow.
6. Give Freely of Yourself
Life is all about give and take, and I promise you, giving is so much more fulfilling than taking. Would you rather be the source of the water, or the sponge that sucks it up?
7. Be Humble
As great as you think you are, crushing your ego is the number one way to ground yourself in reality. There is a distinct difference between being proud of an accomplishment, and thinking that you are god’s gift to humanity.
8. Quit Worrying About What is “Fair”
“Fair” is a purely conditional situation that rarely exists in life. The sooner you realize that nothing about life is “fair” the sooner you’ll readily accept whatever life throws at you.
9. Embrace Change
Change in growth, and vice versa. Trying to live in a bubble is a sign that you can’t cope with life, because one thing about life is that it will always change.
10. Be Financially Responsible
This statement in no way mean “be materialistic”. What it does mean is that in life, in modern society, we all have certain financial responsibilities. Yeah, I’d love to waste all of my money on fun gadgets and lego sets, but I have bills to pay.
11. Be patient
The old cliche that “patience is a virtue” exists because it is true. Anything worth having is worth working for and waiting for. Even diamonds take time.
12. Build Upon Yourself
Self-improvement isn’t just a section of the bookstore you may or may not venture into. No one comes into this world perfect, and therefore we must build on what we have, and become who we want to be, instead of just expecting it to happen.
13. Take Care of Yourself
Our health, both mental and physical is a constant struggle. If you are sick all of the time, how can you be expected to face whatever life throws at you?
14. Manage Your Time
Time should be considered a currency, because it is all we really have on this planet. Dedicating your time to the right pursuits is essential to maintaining a life you want to live.
15. Not Everything is a Crisis
Again, this falls somewhere between time management and picking your battles. If you consistently make mountains out of mole hills, you lose the ability to focus on what really matters in life.
16. Co-dependence is Weakness
No one in this life will get you through but you. The more you depend on “crutches” in life, the less able you are to make it through on your own. No matter how much you think someone else will be there to get you through, often the hardest struggles in life are the ones you have to take on by yourself.
17. Take Responsibility for your Life
Slinging blame around like monkey sling poop is just as effective. This is your time on this planet, so taking ownership of your actions is the only way to truly live YOUR life.
18. Perfection Doesn’t Exist
Trying to achieve perfection is about as meaningful as trying to catch water with a sieve. Your idea of “perfect” and mine, and everyone else’s for that matter, are completely different. Be happy with who you are, instead of worrying about what is acceptable to anyone else.
19. Know Yourself, Trust Yourself
I believe in this principle enough to have it tattooed on my wrist. Knowing yourself is what leads to you trusting yourself, But you cannot trust yourself without knowing yourself. It is a cycle.
20. Expect Less
You’re going to get out of life what you put in to it, and even then – sometimes you get less. Don’t expect life to give you a break, because it won’t. Instead, learn to take what you get and make the best of it.