Do Hard Things: Why We Get Resilience Wrong and the Surprising Science of Real Toughness

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Do Hard Things: Why We Get Resilience Wrong and the Surprising Science of Real Toughness

Do Hard Things: Why We Get Resilience Wrong and the Surprising Science of Real Toughness

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The better you’re able to identify and interpret these, the more likely you are to cope with the difficulties you face. Magness has served as a consultant on mental skills development for professional sports teams, including some of the top teams in the NBA. The title suggested that the author would be discussing both how people get resilience wrong, and the ‘surprising science’ of real toughness. I’m a huge Steve Magness fan so I knew I would like this, but there’s truly amazing nuggets of wisdom in here that I hope to use for myself and others in the future.

Each chapter is chocked-full of interesting anecdotes (some personal, in-the-trenches experience), and the latest scientific discourse packaged in an engaging and digestible way. Below, Steve shares 5 key insights from his new book, Do Hard Things: Why We Get Resilience Wrong and the Surprising Science of Real Toughness. By contrast, the meditators experienced the pain but were able to slow down, calm themselves, and stop reflexive habits from kicking in – in other words, they felt the feeling but could prevent a freak-out. This book runs through a lot of topics around toughness and busts the myth of suppressing and ignoring negative emotions and tough situations. I initially read this book to gain insights for my own distance running journey, and to consider how Magness's ideas relate to Jesus's/the Bible's view of toughness.You can sign up for my weekly letters for software engineers on their path to greatness, here: swizec.

to create high output (defined loosely) individuals and teams, you have to pair high expectations with nurture and support. The best critique I've come across of why "self-esteem culture"/empty praise doesn't produce results. What does a football player who learns to push himself only when a coach is screaming in his face do when it’s him alone on the field?Toughness has long been held as the key to overcoming a challenge and achieving greatness, whether it is on the sports field, at a boardroom, or at the dining room table. The kind of toughness that chooses to accept reality, coexists inside of grit and grace, and that is framed fully in the uniqueness of each individual. In the popular imagination, being tough means projecting confidence, pushing through pain without complaint, and ignoring soppy emotions.

In Steve Magness’ new book, Do Hard Things , he deduces that this old, time-worn model of toughness hasn’t worked; that our model for existing toughness or what Steve describes as, “bulldozing through” oftentimes, “leads to a worse outcome.Unfortunately for the author, who clearly cannot be expected to look at examples from just outside his cultural landscape, the resilience part of the book was incredibly banal, at least in my part of the world. It is written in a straightforward, down-to-earth manner that should have no trouble holding even the finicky reader's attention. What’s the X factor that allows one smart, innovative thinker to found a company or invent a product that makes waves, while their equally smart, innovative peer makes barely a ripple? I guess I was hoping more for some concrete ideas rather than the greatest hits of performance studies from the last 60 years or so.

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