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  • Writer's pictureDavid Rhoads

Changing Your State

Sometimes things seem miserable. You feel awful and it's raining, you're cold and hungry. Time to lean in and change your state. Can you do it?

Not Because you Want To

When I saw this picture it reminded me of a particular Drill Sergeant, Sgt Ash. This guy was amazing (and terrifying). He was every bit of 5' 11" and solid as a rock. His uniform had to be custom tailored because his shoulders were 17 inches larger than his waist and his biceps wouldn't fit into rolled up sleeves. He could max a PT test in any moment of any day. Infantry all the way and he never missed a chance to make us suffer because we were lowly MP's. He pushed everyone in the hard times and we enjoyed the easy times more because of it. Thing is, we would have trusted him in any environment.

Maybe this is not something that you do EVERY day, because some days are amazing. You know those days! The sun is shining, the birds are chirping, the new business is rolling in with seemingly no effort, bank accounts are flush, stock market is up, everyone is on point and life is good.

Then some days are just Ho-Hum and boring....same old, same old. You know those days too. Nothing seems exciting or particularly troubling, nothing hurts and nothing feels especially good either.

But when it gets really hard, when things are difficult and you are tired, how do most people respond? If you are like most of us you bow your head, sag your shoulders and start breathing in a very shallow way. The weight of the world is on top of you. It seems like the misery is going to last forever. Maybe we even think that we need to make ourselves more miserable! Walk more slowly, or use words of defeat.

This Leader has it right. When things are miserable and we feel ourselves starting to go into an un-resourceful state what should we do? Answer: "Lean In' Stand up straight, breathe deep, growl if you need to, then DO what you need to do in the most assertive way you can. As difficult as that seems in the moment, the feeling you will get on the other end of it is worth every bit of pain.

That is what a good leader does for his team and that is what a good coach (or Drill Sgt) does for you.


Disclaimer: I am not now, nor have I ever been a Drill Sergeant in the US Military. Sometimes though, I play the role in my business or for my client, If it makes sense.

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