Tag Archives: Advice

Never Finished

“While most people stop when they’re tired, I stop when I am done.”

David Goggins

David Goggins just might be the baddest man alive. He holds the world pull-up record (4,030 in 17 hours), has 70 ultramarathons under his belt…oh, and he’s also a Navy SEAL.

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As I closed the cover of his new book Never Finished, I knew I couldn’t do it justice in a single blog post. So before we head off for the weekend, I thought I’d share just a few of my favorite moments:

Seconds of Weakness

If you’re trying to lose weight, quit drinking, anything, your moment of weakness will be counted in seconds. Winning those few seconds is everything.

When I quit smoking in 2015, I was afraid I couldn’t do it. How can I be vigilant for the rest of my life?

But David is right. Any cigarette craving was brief and transient.

We can win those few seconds. Let’s get it.

Doing Hard Things

Doing a wall sit on Sunday, I felt the familiar burn in my thighs. Mentally, I resisted it.

Oh no, it hurts, make it stop!

But then I remembered what David said. Stop looking for a sign that the hard times will end.

Just notice the feeling, and accept that that’s the sensation you have right now.

Let’s Commit

“…until you start feeling a sense of pride and self respect in the work you do, no matter how small or overlooked those jobs might be, you will continue to half-ass your life.”

David Goggins

Like anyone, there are jobs I don’t want to do. Cleaning the tub is pretty high on that list.

All that bending. Hair. Eww.

But last Sunday, I scrubbed it spic and span and it was actually fun. Because instead of counting the seconds till I was done, I enjoyed the beautiful sheen I made with my own hands.

We don’t just do better work when we take pride in what we do. We have more fun!

Sgt. Jack

As hard as he is, David is only the second baddest character in his book. The gold has to go to Sgt. Jack, his grandfather.

This steely man faced down intense bigotry. He spent his life in the Army and retired to a comfortable, paid off home filled with family.

Sgt. Jack’s hard edge almost made David think his grandpa didn’t care about him. Quite the opposite.

Sgt. Jack taught David how to work. How to take pride in what he does.

How to be a man.

His most enduring lesson?

Through hard work “you will not only level the playing field but also surpass those born with more natural ability and advantages than you. Let your hours become days, then weeks, then years of effort. Allow discipline to seep into your cells until work becomes a reflex as automatic as breathing. With discipline as your medium, your life will become a work of art. “

David Goggins

Being Grateful for Difficulty

It’s one of the hardest races on earth. The Moab 240, run yearly in Utah, lasts for days and requires an ascent approximately equal to the height of Mount Everest.

Of course, David was there.

And not only there. He was among the leaders.

But a wrong turn and a thyroid issue waylaid him. Now he wasn’t just way behind — he was seriously ill.

But David controlled his mind:

“”….I had been gifted another rare opportunity to test myself in adverse conditions and become more. “”

David Goggins

He recovered his legs and finished the race.

Tough times suck. But in our modern, flabby society, they’re also a gift.

You’re gonna love this book. Grab yourself a copy!

Now, I think I’ll have some cookies. 🙂 Have a great weekend, everyone!

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More on books:

My 2022 Reading List

Amp It Up

The Power Law (Part One)

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How the Bulls Dominated the NBA

Michael Jordan plays basketball better than anyone else in the world does anything else.

Scott Turow, quoted in Playing for Keeps: Michael Jordan and the World He Made

The Chicago Bulls dominated their league like no other team in no other sport during the 1990’s. They won 6 NBA championships, an astounding record. 

I just finished reading the outstanding book Playing for Keeps: Michael Jordan and the World He Made. It’s an insightful look into what made Jordan and his Bulls so special. 

Here are some of their secrets:

1) Hard work. Jordan came to practice before anyone and left last. This got him from being rejected for the high school varsity to dominating the pros. 

2) Coachability. Anyone who coached Jordan, even in baseball, said he was unusually coachable. His willingness to learn from others, rather than think he knew everything, set him apart. 

Consider that for a player of his stature, it would be easy to dismiss a coach’s suggestion! But he didn’t. 

Even the quirky Dennis Rodman listened carefully to coach Phil Jackson’s lessons.

3) Love of the game. Both Jordan and Scottie Pippen stood out for truly loving basketball. 

Jordan even had a highly unusual clause in his contract. He could stop at any basketball court in the world, any time, and play a pickup game.

And he did so, frequently! I like imagining Jordan pulling up at a playground in a fancy car, lacing up his sneakers, and heading out onto the court.

I just wouldn’t want to have to guard him!

This type of clause is highly unusual due to the risk of injury, but Jordan insisted on it.

It’s hard to work at something so intensely for so many years if you don’t love it! And that’s what it takes to excel. 

4) Ability to see others strengths, not just their weaknesses.

Jackson was upset when Pippen refused to play at the end of the Eastern Conference Finals.  But he didn’t let that incident sour him on Scottie as a player.

Instead, he viewed it in the context of all of Scottie’s great work over the years.  Even the exacting Jordan became more aware of his teammates’ strengths over time.

This is an area I struggle with. If someone does one thing wrong, I tend to view them negatively, forgetting all their great work. 

I plan to take a lesson from Coach Jackson on this in the future! 

5) Never giving up. Jordan was famously cut by his high school team. 

Rodman didn’t even make the team at all. And Pippen started college basketball at a no-name school as the team equipment manager. 

These are not people you would think would’ve ever even made it to the NBA, much less won 6 championships. 

Their perseverance made the difference!

Check out this excellent book along with the addictive Netflix series The Last Dance. Even if you’re not a basketball fan, you can learn a lot from the Bulls about excellence in any field! 

More on leadership:

From Anticommunist to Navy SEAL: “I Owe Everything to America”

Jocko on Leadership: “Ownership Is the Most Valuable Compensation”

The Best Motivational Speech of 2021

Photo: “Michael Jordan” by simplistic.designs is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

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