How do you become mentally "tough"?

Discussion in 'Rants, Musings and Ideas' started by nicesinging1, Aug 29, 2009.

  1. nicesinging1

    nicesinging1 Well-Known Member

    Hello, everyone. I have a very specific question that I need advice on. For years, I always wanted to be and known as a guy who is mentally tough and resolute. What I mean by that is I don't just wanna say to myself, "I am a macho man. I am supremely tough mentally. Nothing can rattle me." Rather, I wanna prove in action and lead by example that I am indeed tough mentally.
    But it has never been easy to live a mentally tough life when there are so many temptations, obstacles, personal challenges, and depression to battle through.
    What are some activities both physically and mentally that can determine I am indeed mentally tough? What are some of the things I can do to test limit on my mental toughness?

    Thanks in advance for any insights.
  2. elvinchild

    elvinchild Well-Known Member

    Gosh, if I could tell you I would! I wish I could be the same.
  3. total eclipse

    total eclipse SF Friend Staff Alumni

    i think having a therapist would help you to get skills to become mentally stronger in dealing with life and what it throws at you. Just know some people are more sensitive than others it is genetic and not alot you can do about that but get help with different coping skills take care
  4. poison

    poison Well-Known Member

    what you're asking is how to be stoic? that's what i'm taking it as. it just happens, some people it doesn't happen to. it's nowhere near as nice as it seems, because the more stoic or "mentally tough" you become, the more you lose touch with your feelings and it becomes harder to express them and deal with them.
  5. Aurora Gory Alice

    Aurora Gory Alice Well-Known Member

    Agreed. Stoicism is not a good trait to have (unless you work in an industry where it would be beneficial, like being in the army or working with dying children) however... where it does have it's upsides it also has major downsides and I for one do not believe you can 'just' become mentally tough. I believe situations make you this way.

    If you throw yourself to the lions, you may find you become mentally tough, I suppose what it'll come down to is how you deal with emotionally difficult situations. Put yourself into a few if you can and see what happens.
    You'll either crack or you won't and then you'll have your answer.
    Some people swear by "what doesn't kill you only makes you stronger". I'm guessing those of us on this website swear by the other rule.

    "What doesn't kill us, only makes us want to kill ourselves".

    Whatever happens - good luck.
  6. Clockwork Reality

    Clockwork Reality Well-Known Member

    Linds summed it up pretty well. If you want to prepare yourself for mental toughness, then there are a few career fields open. Business management might be one, but officership in the military will definately fulfill that quotient if you're looking to make yourself "mentally tough."

    I would suggest volunteer work at the local hospital before doing anything else. Regardless of the outcome, you'll be performing a service for your community, and you'll have to deal with some very tough problems. Obviously, you won't be the doctor on the ground . . . but trust me, it will still effect you, if you're a compassionate person like I am.

    Good luck in your journey. :smile:
  7. KC1985

    KC1985 Member

    You should believe these words:

    I am mentally tough and was once fairly mentally weak. I am known as a stoic person. People describe me that way.

    You don't want to be mentally tough. The cost outweighs the benefits.

    Pursue a goal you feel passionate about and don't stop persuing it.
    By trying as hard as possible to pursue something you may become mentally tough along the way. But you don't want it to happen.
  8. Littlewiji

    Littlewiji Well-Known Member

    You know the phrase grin and bear?

    That's pretty much what i've done for the last year or so. Cracking a joke, even just smiling, portays you as tougher to others, and in turn to yourself
  9. Aerial

    Aerial Well-Known Member

    It's about learning how to cope. We all here want good coping skills no matter how sensitive and fragile we are. I think to be tough is to admit your vulnerabilities and to face them.

    Most people RUN away from pain. We try to escape. We think we are being "mentally tough" by doing this but it's weakness. It's denial. We can't face the pain and hurt we are feeling. I know it is very hard for me to face stuff such as rejection, abandonment, losing, failing, and suffering. Any of that stuff. I've always been easily hurt and easily roused by my emotions. I've long hated this part of myself for so long. It's made me feel weak and flawed like life is too hard to live. Even doing the simplest of things. It's made me so moody and angry for most of my life. I've always tried to play tough and now I am just fucking tired. I don't want to act tough. I just want to be able to cope, face my fears, and get some balance in my life when I feel I need it. That's a sure sign of health right? Like when I can finally feel through the emotions I am experiencing and not feel like I am going to break.

    The first thing I want to do when any negative emotions stir up inside is to snuff them out and pretend they don't exist. It is hard to do this through sheer willpower, so of course like many of us here, I look for assistance.

    That assistance will be different for each person. For me, it is often food. I eat emotionally and as a result, I've struggled with compulsive overeating for years and years. For some it is food too or gambling or sex or drugs or cigarettes or alcohol to name a few. It can be anything. Anything to make us forget the pain we feel before we get a chance to feel it, figure it out and do something about it.

    Right now, I am going through a lot emotionally and I am feeling it in so many directions. I am trying to face my sources of pain by dealing with them directly. It's not easy and I know I have a lot of fear. But I fear more for what I will do to myself and what I will become if I don't stop running away...that one day I might literally take that permanent vacation. I don't want to really die. I just want my PAIN to die. I think that's what we all want here when we think or talk about suicide. We want living to be better so that means each of us truly would like to live. Just better.

    I think each time we run away, we set ourselves up to be even weaker for the next dilemma we'll face. I want to stop running.

    If I am going to be tough for anything, it is in facing my pain in full glory and doing something constructive about it WITHOUT RUNNING AWAY.

    How many of us here have really done this? Be honest now. I bet when you think you do, you look back and see that all you've truly done is find some mode of escape just like before many times over. Getting high, getting stone drunk, fucking random people, stuffing your face until you blank out, isolating yourself, shopping til you drop...
  10. poison

    poison Well-Known Member

    i'm so angry i've became stoic. it makes dealing with emotions so much harder.
  11. Tray

    Tray Well-Known Member

    Im not sure if Im in the catagory that you speak of. But i can truly say that nothing really effects me mentally. I'm not bothered by my surrounding. I dont feel much at all. The feeling of other while understood are not of true importance to me.

    I may seem helpful and caring but the lives of those around me are of no importance. I may seem cold to the world. In fact that may be the problems i face with my current relationship.

    Life is like a game to me. I play with everyones emotions gaining trust and pleasing people just to get what i want.

    You cant let anyone inside. To be mentaly tough the only thoughts you can accept are your own. if they are indeed your own. Which brings about a sense of paranoia...

    I have the hardest time expressing my self. No one seems to understand me. As if i need them to anyways. Instead people know me as the person i want them to know me as. Thus for every group of people i pretend to be something else. Which just makes the game that much more interesting.

    To be mentally tough you have to cut your ties to your surrounding. Let go of everything you care about and focus on one thing. Your self. Defend your mind from everything and everyone. Nothing is safe. Never drop your gaurd. The people around you may seem nice. But you can never let them in enough to effect you. Thus you will create a you that you want others to know.

    In the end it becomes lonely. Makes friends with your self. Your the only one you can trust.