Resilience is Knowing When Not to Quit
Resilience is such an important part of growing a business…
As well as the good times you’re going to get plenty of bad times too. This is when most people can’t seem to battle through the challenges and end up quitting.
But this is the time you need to double down, work hard, show pig-headed perseverance and resilience. You’d be surprised what the human mind and body can do when pushed to its limits.
In my moments of need, I’ve always sought out people (past and present) who’ve shown great resilience, so I can understand and learn from their story.
One of my favorite lines is from a speech by Winston Churchill. In the heat of battle, he said. “If you’re going through hell, keep going – never, never, never give up.” This is the resilience needed to succeed.
Rewriting What’s Humanly Possible
In 2018 adventurer and leading expert on resilience, Ross Edgley, re-wrote the capabilities of what is humanly possible: through sheer will, determination and resilience.
Don’t get me wrong Ross required a plan and needed to be in great shape to achieve his goal. But without having the resilience to push his body and mind to the absolute limit he would have failed.
What did Ross do?
Ross Edgley was the first person to swim around Great Britain (the world’s ninth-largest island) without setting foot on land (between the start and finish). He broke loads of other records along the way.
Just to put this monumental feat into perspective.
Ross swam for 12 hours a day covering up to 15 miles, usually in 6-hour intervals, eating & sleeping in between, and he never missed a day due to injury or fatigue.
And when I said ate. He was shovelling (literally) up to 15,000 calories of food into his mouth each day, sometimes even sleeping with a cooked chicken on his pillow.
Along the way, he had to combat 100 mph winds, world pools, massive cargo ships, giant stinging jellyfish, whales, sharks, seals, and swimming in his own sick.
Here are some of the unbelievable statistics from his great British swim:
- 157 days at sea
- 1,791 miles swam (like crossing the English-channel 85 times)
- Zero sick days
- Over 1 million calories consumed
- Over 100 giant jellyfish stings
- Strongest winds encountered, 105mph.
By the end, Ross had gained 20 kilos and his body had changed to somewhat mimic a seal, with a big powerful upper body and legs that had thinned to become more jelly-like.
Ross is a leading expert on resilience is always searching out amazing feats of resilience.
In his book (The Art of Resilience) he wrote about the time he hooked up with the legendary monks of Japan to help with his training & knowledge.
Tendai monks are celebrated in history as being one of the most extreme practitioners of ‘spiritual sports science’ and are famous for the Kaihogyo, where the monk’s run the world’s most brutal ultra-marathon. 1,000 (yes 1,000) marathons in 1,000 days in a quest for enlightenment.
For the monks, there’s no cutting-edge sports nutrition or high-tech clothing, instead they must complete it on a diet of rice and vegetables whilst wearing straw sandals called waraji.
It gets worse. Before they can even take part, they must qualify, which requires them to complete an initial 100 days of practice, running up to 40km per day.
Once complete they must petition the senior monks to complete the remaining 900 days, but it comes with a warning. As from 101 days onwards, a monk is no longer allowed to withdraw from the Kaihogyo.
Years ago, competing monks we’re required to carry a short sword, and we’re expected to take their own lives if they couldn’t finish. Times have moved on (even with the Tendai monks) and these days the selection process allows only those monks who will finish competing.
Unmarked graves from the sanctity & severity, explain why it’s very rare that a monk embarks on the quest. The format is so brutal only 46 monks have completed the 1,000-day challenge since 1885.
While in Japan, Ross discovered monk mental toughness ungoverned by money, medals & records. Instead, they are motivated by a deeper intrinsic purpose, which Ross has added to his resilience.
But what lesson did Ross learn on his world record-breaking great British swim? Through sheer will & resilience, anything is possible (including building a successful business). Resilience is knowing when not to quit.
Darren Turner’s imaging business success story began in 2003 when he opened a retail store in the UK selling printer supplies to home users & small organisations. Since then he has moved into a business unit, grown his team and continued to adapt to match his customers’ changing needs. He has developed a ‘fit for purpose’ office products and solutions business model that provides certainty of cost and service for small business, charities and schools—thus providing them complete peace of mind.
He has become a trusted advisor for small organisations across the world. Turner invites you to chat with him about your business, reaching out to him on LinkedIn, email or on the phone +44-7887-548523
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