when we see leaders who display an above-average mindset, coupled with strong will and the ability to transcend insurmountable odds, we refer to that remarkable cadre of skills as as mental toughness.
Mental toughness has been described as the “ability to work hard and respond resiliently to failure and adversity — the inner quality that enables individuals to work hard and stick to their long-term passions and goals.”
Steve Siebold, mental toughness expert and author of 177 Mental Toughness Secrets of the World Class, teaches that a person of average intelligence and modest means can become world class by implementing the thinking, habits and philosophies associated with this principle. Vince Lombardi believed that mental toughness was one of the most important leadership skills you could attain.
If you’re a leader and want to become more effective, know this: Mental toughness is a fundamental skill set, and the magnitude of your success depends on it.
1. It creates a winning mindset.
Thinking is the primary filter for every experience that you have. Mediocre thinking promotes an equally low standard of performance and results. A winning mindset (i.e. the thinking, habits and philosophies of elite performers) however, transforms the landscape. It unlocks the unlimited potential to create, influence and generate outcomes that activate success.
the real key to excellence in both sports and business is not the ability to swim fast or do quantitative analyses quickly in your head. Rather, it is [mindset] mental toughness.”
Make no mistake: Leadership success depends on the non-negotiable ability to seize a profoundly powerful mindset — the mindset of a champion.
Leadership is not fundamentally focused on winning and celebrating success. Leaders know that tough times come with the territory. Delving deeply into the trenches, grappling with hardships and doing whatever it takes to succeed is par for the course. They welcome obstacles and uncertainty for their potential to make them smarter, more agile and resilient.
Psychologist Angela Duckworth refers to the ability to thrive during adversity as grit. Her research has demonstrated that it’s a true predictor of success, even more than cognitive and technical skill sets.
One of the exceptional hallmarks of mental toughness is that it helps leaders to reach for their “why.” This is especially important during difficult times — when commitment may wax and wane. The internal drive to achieve goals despite setbacks is what distinguishes the world class from average performers.
3. It provides the courage to challenge the status quo.
innovation. Elementary to the exercise of leadership, they signal forward movement and progress, rather than a wanton commitment to archaic principles and practices of the past. (the way Christianity/Church has been….traditionally, EXPECTED…) …the whole premise of mental toughness is built on the willingness to face fear, take action and thrive in the midst of adversity, courage is a leadership imperative. It would be difficult, perhaps even impossible to lead without the willingness to encounter turbulence and face the unknown.
Courage allows leaders to flourish in environments that constantly change. It also emboldens them to take on new opportunities for learning and growth. A catalyst for healthy self-esteem, it also helps leaders to effectively navigate stress, conflict and crises. Simply put: Mental toughness is an unmatched mechanism for growth. (because it is something one CAN LEARN (in Christ we call it FAITH and TRUST in the Lord…qualities that are acquired by EXPERIENCE…experience is only acquired by ‘stepping out on faith’, risking oneself for Christ…by Standing Up for truth, honesty and love (1 Corinthians 13:4-8) )