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Sep 13, 2018

Muscles do not grow by relaxing or taking it easy. Muscles will only grow and strengthen after you have stressed them and forced them to work hard. Our minds are the exact same way. We do not expand and strengthen our minds by avoiding discomfort.

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Episode Transcription

[INTRO]

♫ Trenches by Pop Evil ♫

*Alex*

Welcome to Morning Mindset. A daily dose of practical wit and wisdom with a professional educator & trainer, Amazon best selling author, United States Marine, Television, and Radio host, Paul G. Markel. Each episode will focus on positive and productive ways to strengthen your mindset and help you improve your relationships, career goals, and overall well-being. Please welcome your host; Paul G. Markel.


*Professor Paul*

Hello, welcome back to morning mindset and welcome back to the Morning Mindset book study, a 30 Day Plan for a More Positive and Productive Life and what we have been doing well for the last seven chapters or less seven sessions is going through one by one one at a time the 30 individual sections of the morning mindset books.

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30 sections, one a day, 30 days a month. Yes, I know that some months have 31 days, but some don't. Don't do this in February because you'll run out of days. So number eight, section number eight in the morning mindset book is about Voluntary Hardship. What is voluntary hardship? Voluntary hardship means to work harder than you normally would to experience deliberate and purposeful discomfort and stress.

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That's right rather than seeking to be comfortable. You take the time and you seek out. Discomfort on purpose. That's right. You seek out hardship on purpose, Deliberately. Yes indeed. How do muscles grow? I hope that all of you took, you know human anatomy and physiology and so forth and you know, basically how human beings work muscles grow.

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Not when they're relaxed or when you're taking it easy muscles will only grow and strengthen after they have been stressed and forced to work harder than normal, and the opposite is also true. If you do not use muscles and people who have been in comas or people who have been in casts or bedridden or what have you what happens to their muscles to their muscles get really super strong because they weren't being used.

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No, it's the exact opposite. They waste away the experience muscle atrophy. If it if you've ever known anyone we don't do a lot of hard plaster casts anymore. If you notice a change in medical techniques from the 70s and 80s and even 90s to today. You don't see a lot of people walking around on crutches with big plaster casts on their on their legs or the long large plaster cast on their arms and what have you that's pretty rare today, and one of the reasons is because they understand that a that's not the best way and there is another way to do it.

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But in the olden days, you know, if someone had their arm in a cast for two months or their leg in a cast for two months or what have you and then they took the cast off and you compared the limb that was in the cast to the one that was not and the limb that was in the cast Not only was it super pale but it was smaller.

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Why is that because the muscles? Faded away the same thing goes with our minds our Spirits our personalities voluntary hardship. Not only does it strengthen your body, but it helps you to strengthen your mind as well. Now there are several different types of voluntary hardship like for instance when I was in the United States Marine Corps, we had to do forced marches or Ruck marches or what we called in the Infantry humps.

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We humped, you would put your pack on, your combat gear, your helmet, your flak jacket and all your weapons and all that stuff. You'd carry all that and you would walk at a very brisk pace for a long period of time many, many, many miles. Now normally you would not do this person would not normally do this to themselves.

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The reason that the Marine Corps infantry made you do it was so that you could develop your spirit that you can harden up that your mind because at some point in time your body would start to ache your legs will start to ache your back would ache you would get tired, and your body would say to your mind. "Hey, this is not fun. I'm uncomfortable. Let's quit."

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Your mind had to take control until your body note. We are not quitting, we can't quit we're going to keep going now in the Marine Corps infantry. They don't start you out on a 50-mile forced March sent the first thing you do because no one would make it. They do is they start small a 5-mile hump, 10 miles, 15 and so on and so forth and you build up from there you get stronger physically and stronger mentally.

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You guys probably if you're listening to me, you're not going to be participating in forced marches or Ruck marches or what have you in the Infantry, but something that you can do is you can engage in strength training. Now if you've been paying attention at all, you know that I've been involved in barbell strength training now for not quite two years I learned how to do it properly and I realize that you know, most of my adult life. I was just mimicking what I saw and what I thought I should be doing, but I really didn't know what I was doing properly.

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Now barbell training is voluntary discomfort, especially when you begin because every session every weight session every training session you add just a little bit more weight to the bar. It's called linear progression. So you start out and three weeks later you're doing X number. Eight pounds more and you do more and more and more.

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So it doesn't, you know, a lot of folks when they go to the gym, they start lifting or doing whatever and they do it until it gets easy and then they're super excited. Because now what was hard before is easy now and I like look at me I can do this way. I can curl this way to bench this weight or whatever and I can do it easily.

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When you engage in voluntary hardship, you deliberately make the weight heavier every single time you push harder and your muscles actually have the ability, and most of the time your muscles have more ability than your then you allow for you have to tell them now. I know this is hard. I know this hurts, I know it's not fun. But your mind has to take control and say "We're going to do it anyway", and then what do you end up with on the other side?

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You say "Man, I'm better today than I was before. I'm better today than I was six months ago. I can look and see my Improvement because my mind is in control of my body." Far too often we find that people in our modern society their mind is not in control of their physical desires. Their desire to be comfortable, their desire for whatever. Why do you think that people become alcoholics or drug addicted? How does drug addiction happen? How does it occur? How does alcoholism occur or any other behavior that is a self-destructive Behavior whether it's an eating disorder or what have you.

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The body says I want to feel good, and what makes me feel good? Well, fill in the blank. Now the mind, if you could talk to the mine you'd say is it a good idea to be ingesting all these narcotics in the mine would probably say hmm. No, it's not a good idea people who can't quit smoking. They know that it's bad for him.

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Right? They absolutely know that cigarettes are detrimental to their health and yet they keep doing that. Why because they have well, they're like, "You don't understand Paul. I have cravings. What is craving the cigarette, my body?" So your body is telling your mind. I want this. I want you to smoke that cigarette so that I'll feel better, and the mind says "Okay" because the mines not in control the body is controlled voluntary hardship, teaches you to put your mind your consciousness thinking brain in control of your actions and your body now something else that you may not have thought about because it's not in Vogue anymore, but it used to be in Vogue and that is the practice of fasting.

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Yeah, that's right fasting. I mean just drinking water and reading or meditating or praying or what have you and not eating on purpose. You're like, yeah, but that's so crazy old crazy religious stuff and we don't do that to me anymore because we're not crazy religious know the purpose of fasting is exactly like any of the other voluntary hardship.

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Because what will happen what happens when you fast your you know gut starts to rumble and it says "Hey there buddy, I'm hungry. Feed me, give me something" and normally when you get hungry, soon as you can hungry, your mind says, "Okay body. I'm going to do the best I can and I'm going to find food for you and you run around and you satisfy your body give it what it wants so that won't be uncomfortable.

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But when you fast you your mind takes over and you control your body and you tell you about it's okay. We have enough fat, there's enough fat on us that we're not going to die. We're going to drink some water. We're going to be okay, but your body says no, I'm uncomfortable feed me feed me and your mind says no we're going too fast for, whatever.

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That is voluntary discomfort, that helps you to strengthen your mind. So it puts your brain your thinking mind in the driver's seat. It's the refining power of voluntary hardship and I would say that if you are looking if you find that you have self-destructive behaviors. Whatever that happens to be your body is in control when your body says I want the booze.

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I want the drugs. I want the I want the cigarettes. I want the fatty snacks or whatever. That's because your mind isn't taking control and there's one way to deal with that and it's voluntary hardship, but your brain back in control. Alright, we went a little bit long today, but I think you're worth it. I am your host Paul Markel and I will talk to you again, real soon.


[OUTRO]

♫ Trenches by Pop Evil ♫

*Alex*

Thank you for spending time with us today. To get show notes, submit a topic request, for more from your host Paul G. Markel, visit MorningMindsetPodcast.com. That’s MorningMindsetPodcast.com. Please leave a review of this podcast on your favorite podcast player, we appreciate your time & effort, and we look forward to reading your honest feedback.