Like so many aspects of our daily lives, communication is a state of mind. Nothing outside of you can control you or make you feel, think, or act a certain way. When emotions or thoughts amplify negative feelings – such as being attacked, misunderstood, or undervalued – that means you have to use mental toughness in communication to ensure you are effectively communicating.
That’s not to say that communicating with everyone should be mentally exhausting. No, it just means that working toward better, more effective communication with those around you might require more focus and a willingness to persevere through challenges.
Communicating effectively often requires mental toughness as we work to mitigate miscommunications and to instead build bridges between people. In this blog, Thinker Base, your source for communication training courses, will cover what mental toughness means and how you can apply mental toughness to your communication strategies.
What is Mental Toughness?
Mental toughness is getting back up when you fall down. Whenever you set a goal for yourself, you should assume that at some point, you will have a setback. But that’s not an excuse to let yourself give up!
Mental toughness is what helps us to get back up whenever those challenges present themselves. It enables us to grow and to endure.
While we are pushing towards accomplishing what we want, there are constant forces that work against us.
Much of the time these are natural forces, but other times things are just pitted against you. The most important thing is to take care of yourself – put yourself in a peak state and then fight your way through the battlefield.
Learn from the failures and savor the victories.
The funny thing is that this type of reaction to adversity – this mental toughness – looks different from person to person. We are all unique.
Some people prepare for battle by pampering themselves, other do research and prepare their intellect, while some people use their skills to motivate others and to rally the troops.
Whatever it is that enables us to continue to carry on, that ability is our mental toughness. And we need it in every aspect of our lives – including in effectively communicating with everyone around us.
Choosing Mental Toughness
So what does choosing mental toughness mean? Let’s look through some examples of everyday people employing mental toughness…
Parents. Nobody can deny their incredible abilities to push through the daily challenges of raising children.
Parents use mental toughness when they hit hard times and don’t let their children see them act defeated. Parents show their children strength and they share wisdom by example. They keep hopes high and let their children know that things will always get tough, but you only lose when you choose to give up.
Another example is successful people in business who demonstrate mental toughness with their relentlessness and tenacity. They go all-in on their goals and dreams. They also fall…hard. But the great ones – the ones who succeed – keep getting back up and running at the walls even faster.
Even if they don’t achieve the financial success they want, those people achieve far greater success that comes from the deepest roots of humanity: self-acceptance and self-respect.
Leaders of all caliber – from coaches, to teachers, to mentors, to supervisors – strive for mental toughness in their own way.
It’s hard to be 100% focused and enthusiastic all the time, to influence and to carry others on your shoulders.
But when people choose to be leaders, they understand the endurance they must have and the toll it might take on them.
Look, for example, at how former president Barack Obama looked before and after his time as president…from youthful to looking drained. But in the end, he still stood up tall for what he believed, he still smiled, and he still had hope.
Moral of the story? The only way you are defeated is if you give up. Take these folks, for example:
Why Use Mental Toughness in Communication?
Mental toughness is, of course, subjective. But it’s still a universal skill – we can all employ mental toughness when we need it.
When you choose to use mental toughness in your daily life, you will notice your communication with others improving. You can choose to let others be the way they want to be in an interaction through quieting your own perceptions and judgments. But this requires that you demonstrate mental toughness.
You need to proactively choose to allow people to be the way they want to be in an interaction. Your choice to offer that space will drastically improve your communication. We must all undertake the challenge of facing ourselves and overcoming years of bad habits and judgments.
These are all tactics we teach through the Process Communication Model. Of course, staying positive doesn’t necessarily mean jumping for joy all the time. Positivity also doesn’t require that you let people talk down to you or walk all over you.
Positive progress can be achieved by employing mental toughness, especially in those moments of adversity. Achieving your goals – especially in your communication with others – means pushing through those challenges with the goal of continuous improvement.
Staying positive means not feeling defeated or unwanted. It means not going on the attack or blaming other people when things don’t go your way.
Mental toughness looks different for everyone. Let’s take a look at some familiar faces here. Some of the actors in this video put in the work just because they are hard workers. For others, like Will Smith, hard work is a lifestyle and there is simply no such thing as giving up.
See what you think…will this motivate you to push through any challenge?
Hard Work and Patience Pay Off
Anytime I struggle with maintaining focus on my goals and with overcoming tough challenges, I look for inspiration from others and their success.
Gary Vaynerchuk is always an inspiration for me, with his emphasis on hard work and mental toughness being a mirror of our goals here at Thinker Base. Focusing on those attributes in the way we communicate helps us all to succeed.
Vaynerchuk walks the walk, just like we do. We improve our communication every day by implementing what we’ve learned from PCM. We recognize situations where those skills can be honed and we jump right into them.
Understanding that continuous need to improve and to learn and to work hard requires mental toughness. And that all starts with self-awareness.
Communicating effectively is a matter of constant practice and self-awareness. It takes mental toughness to keep working hard at something like communication, but it is absolutely worthwhile!
And the success you can have with hard work and patience is beyond what you might imagine right now.
Staying positive and strong requires that you surround yourself with people and situations to encourage your growth. This is another important aspect of mental toughness that can’t be ignored.
I turn to certain people in my day-to-day life, but I also look to these success stories like Gary Vaynerchuk and some of the celebrities and famous names we’ve seen in other videos in this blog.
It’s important to identify the areas in your life that act as a poison – the people or situations that don’t help drive you forward and closer to your goals.
Once you identify them, it’s time to work towards changing them, letting them go, or accepting that you are choosing the long road and the uphill battle to reach your success.
This could be a friend, a lover, a parent, a job, a team, a living situation, heck it could even be something minuscule like a car!
Whatever it is in your life that impacts your ability to push through challenges and to achieve your goals, trim away the negative influences. Always keep the positive influences. Keep the people who encourage you and motivate you to be more – surround yourself with a supportive team.
It’s those people – those ones on your team who want to see you succeed – those positive influences who help you achieve things you never even thought possible.
Need one last boost of motivation? Who better than the legendary Elon Musk!
Listen up, and then buckle down on your own mental toughness. Push through your boundaries and achieve something great. But, never forget, a huge component of that success is your ability to communicate.
Communicate your goals to your supportnetwork. Communicate your passion – your obsession – to those who need to hear it. Communicate with your collaborators and with your detractors; with those who can benefit from what you offer and with those who can teach you something new.
Use mental toughness in communication to push through every barrier. It’s what we do at Thinker Base and it’s what we teach to anyone who’s willing to dig deep and to make a positive change.
Is that you?
If you’re ready to challenge yourself and to start pushing your own boundaries, let’s work together to use mental toughness in communication. Effective communication will change your life, but you have to be ready to face the challenges of changing the way you communicate.