Many people may think that survival is all about the newest, most rugged gear that people have. Many others think it is all about how many ways you can start a fire and many other skills. While these two things are important, there is one factor that is a multiplier, if you will. This factor is having the right mindset and attitude. If you think you will survive, you will survive. If your mind tells you that you are in control of a situation, you will be in control.
If your mind tells you, you are not scared, you will not be scared. Life is made up of emotions and reactions, and if you can control the emotions, your reactions will become much more effective. If you train your mind to be strong, you will survive. It is that simple. Keep reading for ways that can help you improve your mindset and willpower.
Learn to Set Goals
One of the best ways to get through a particularly stressful, strenuous, or trying time is to set goals. Setting small goals rolls over into larger goals until you have accomplished your large, overarching goal. For example, say you are wanting to do 100 sit-ups. Tell yourself to do the first 10, then the next 10, and just keep grinding away until you hit 100. Smaller goals are much easier for the brain to handle during times of stress. Many people who have survived say that they broke their survival up into just surviving every few hours.
Saying No to Your Body
This is potentially one of the hardest mental skills to master. Our bodies are controlled by our brains, but oftentimes, it feels like the other way around is true. We get hungry, so we eat. We feel tired, so we sleep. Breaking this cycle of listening to your body is hard, but it can help you, not just in survival, but in life. If you are really trying to get something done to make money and provide for yourself and your family, maybe you need to say no to going to bed early. If you have done this before, it is not as hard for you because you have built up resistance to your impulses. There is no need to take this to the extreme and be unhealthy with it but saying no to your normal impulses occasionally can help you grow your mindset.
Learn to Adapt
Being able to adapt is a massive asset to possess during a survival situation. No survival scenario is perfect, because you will never have all the right supplies, be stuck in the right environment, or be that close to civilization. Even if you have trained for survival, every scenario will be vastly different. Being adaptable is great because you will be able to make your own gear out of whatever you have, sleep in uncomfortable environments, go without a meal, and many other non-routine tasks like these. Learning to break your routines is a great way to learn adaptability. Even something as simple as learning to use your non-dominant hand for various tasks increases your adaptability. It is all about telling your brain that everything does not have to be perfectly normal all the time.
One of the key factors of the survival mindset is having something you can look forward to. If you are weak, cold, and tired during your survival ordeal, you can start to lose hope. To prevent this from happening, you must think past your present suffering. If you are religious, pray, or think about your religion. If you have a family and friends, think about how much you want to see them again. Let these things start a fire in you that nothing can put out. If you are reading this and can feel your heart start beating faster, you have it in you. Always keep motivation in your mind and your heart. It will provide you more strength than you can begin to know.
Learn to Dissociate
Dissociation is the act of separating your mind from your current physical situation. For example, if you are hungry, making yourself focus on anything but your hunger makes you less hungry. This is an especially important skill in a survival situation. It can cover anything from your hunger or thirst to your lack of sleep. There are many ways you can practice dissociating. Try running a long distance to the point where you start feeling exhausted. Once you are to this point, focus on anything but the pain. Some common techniques are to focus on your breathing, focus on the rhythm of your feet, or doing basic math in your head. With practice, you will become much better at dissociation.
Cut Out Pessimism
One of the worst traps to fall into is negative thinking. As soon as negative thoughts are alive in your mind, they will overtake your ability to survive. Survival is the worst time for negative thoughts to occur because you are already looking at a bleak situation. To be able to survive, you need to be able to quell negative thoughts and emotions as soon as you feel them. It sounds simple enough, but when you are in a survival situation, it can be hard to do. There are many ways to improve your pessimistic attitude. One of the ways you can do this right now, without being a survival situation, is by cutting out all of the negative speech you say on a daily basis. Even the most optimistic person says negative things from time to time.
It’s not easy to do, but by cutting down on it, you will have a better attitude when you need it. Another way is to learn the power of positivity. Optimistic people accomplish things others would scoff at.
It does not matter how you improve your mental toughness, as long as you make it a priority. You will learn more about yourself than you ever have before if you make growing mentally a daily habit. Just keep in your mind all the reasons why you are trying to survive. Keep in mind that negative thoughts will end your attempt at survival sooner than any other factor. If you remember that your mindset is the largest factor of survival, you will survive. Keep working on developing your survival mindset, as it is the most important investment of your time you can make.
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