At anzuk, we have a set of values in which we live and work by, to have a strong vision to achieve the most within us, our educators and our pupils. This blog review is written on the thoughts and values of our in-house lead compliance officer, Dianne, who has a incredibly strong work ethic to coach the way people think. Dianne’s review below is based on, The Rich Roll Podcast #413, David Goggins, Rich Roll.

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David Goggins shares his story and toolkit to chasing big dreams, removing obstacles, and actualizing your best, most authentic self.

“Often referred to as the toughest athlete on the planet, David Goggins, is the only member of the US Armed Forces to complete SEAL training (including THREE Hell Weeks), the U.S. Army Ranger School (where he graduated as Enlisted Honor Man) and Air Force tactical air controller training.” (Rich Roll) I am going to be breaking down his why and how he did it.

David Goggins never had tokenism, favouritism, or privilege nor was an active anti-racist so how did he become such an underdog leader, inspiration and high achiever?

David faced all sorts of obstacles in life (poverty, psychological and physical abuse, obesity, learning disabilities, asthma, sickle cell anemia, even a congenital heart defect) and racism in the military which could have left him a very different man than he is today. David could have let challenges consume him and even have a very hard-line approach on perfection and anti-racism, but he didn’t.

Everything used to bother David – he focused on other people’s headspace and let people get to him which only hurt him and his psyche. For years now, David owns his own headspace and doesn’t let himself worry about what others think which has been his liberation.

This was how he was able to be happy and work/live in the military for so long and be the only Black man in most (if not all) of his field. His focus was on the next challenge and to keep going so he didn’t let racism or who he thought he should be as a Black man get in the way of his dream. He wasn’t going to live for somebody else – he could only live for himself.

Anger was never David’s motivator. Motivators were never enough. He said anger could only get you so far as to maybe get you pissed off momentarily to get up and move. It was not sustainable and did more harm than good if not released or transformed. David could have lived with anger all his life based on circumstance, hardship and racism. He chose self-belief, self-love and resistance to aversion through non-judgement or attachment. Pain and suffering became his obsession and instead of fighting it, he embraced it as a form of growth in life and kept leaning into it without fail. Through extreme sports, he gains so much insight into self-exploration because he is confronted with the truth of himself and his reality without escape. Many people would think pain is a negative thing, but mindset is everything.

David chose to overcome adversity and be a badass not through anti-racism or hatred but by stoicism, owning his life and believing the obstacle is the way. David built his own resilience through his personal experiences – he learned to stop avoiding suffering because he knew it was a part of life and led him to victory. David was used to being uncomfortable through who he was, so he just made it his new norm thus being able to do what others deemed impossible in mind and body. It was all mindset – his mental strength, belief in himself and a whole lot of heart. He manifested his reality through the hard work that he had to do on himself – he went to war with himself to find peace.

This is a very similar way to which meditation works – the highest form of meditation yields enlightenment where all makes sense. Mental training focuses the mind to centre, silence and fulfil purpose using your truest self and breathes that positive actualization and code into your cells, body, health, spirit and your energy field. Your being becomes equanimous to the fickle mind, bodily sensations and let’s go of exterior motives. Being fully present in the moment allows you to succeed without your ego or subconscious chiming in. You learn so much about yourself and life through situations that strip you of your comfort and power.

“You have to go to war with yourself before you can find peace.” David Goggins

I came to the belief that David did the best thing he could do for racism, by showing everyone the strength of his mind and body. He became a point of inspiration to be better for himself by using his belief to achieve greatness. His niche was adrenaline and endurance training. David never wanted to get “comfortable” for fear of complacency and getting soft. That softness could come in the form of making a lot of money or having a nice house and then thinking you’ve made it and no longer being a doer. Work was the good stuff he believes. If your work isn’t challenging you or driving you in life, you need to take a good hard look at yourself, as your health and life depend on it. David said the day he stopped working/driving/persevering; he was as good as done in life. He didn’t want to live without purpose. His dream was what kept David going from the early onset and has been a constant in his life. He didn’t have the luxury of deciding if he wanted to pursue his goals or not one day; he never even called it goals – he called them dreams. Dreams came from within and were bigger than himself and could transcend things like comfort, preference or the frequent moods and emotions we as human beings experience all day. This is not to say that David didn’t have emotions or inner conflicts – he had them, saw them, gave them some love then turned them into wins by accepting them and moving forward instead of trying to deny himself or his circumstances.

David would say, there’s a lot of power in being nobody – he always had that humble yet fierce ‘Day 1, Week 1’ mentality from bootcamp. When you start from nothing, you don’t have the distractions of others or any personal noise getting in the way of you doing you. Day 1, Week 1 meant that just when he thought it was over, it wasn’t, and David had to get used to failing and picking himself up to go again – harder and stronger this time. Unfortunately, David found that many people didn’t want what he was offering in terms of life philosophy and successful mentality because it was seen as extreme, and people formed their own opinions and projected their insecurities based on different levels of development in their life journey.

For David, the ignorance of others didn’t stop him from being the most superhuman athlete even though he ended up being a pillar of positivity and possibility for all his followers. He never spoke about race but let his work and his being speak for itself. Often, David is misconstrued to be a very hardened and unhappy man – a man with intense demon eyes, with little kindness and no true fulfilment who drops a lot of F-bombs; this couldn’t be farther from the truth (except for the matter-of-fact f-bombs!).

He believed this outwards perception is what most unfulfilled individuals hold fixed to and inhibit them from being their highest and best selves. We focus on what we want people to look like, act like, and talk like as it helps us feel good about ourselves but what does this really serve? David showed that it is possible to be a great leader and role model just as he was and when you become so focused and at peace with who you are and what you bring, that no one can hurt you. Success will come in many forms that include the people whose lives you touch – David never desired to play the game of others, follow the rat race or chase fame. True success is being happy and content with who you are and the difference you make.

What I learned from this podcast and listening to David is that each person is an individual and doesn’t mean they’re any less of a diverse or whole person if they choose themselves over social justice, politics or issues. It might mean they’re even stronger of a person to know it, see it and choose their peace, power, energy over conflict or constraint. These vices are anything that hold you back from fulfilling your belief and purpose in life. The power of being your authentic self allows you to shine regardless of what others think.

Check out David Goggin’s book and podcasts on the Rich Roll.