How to toughen yourself up mentally

Updated March 18, 2017

Being tough isn't solely about physical power. Toughness is also about having mental strength. Possessing a strong mind can help you achieve in life, whether you are a professional athlete or a student studying for a major entry exam. Develop your mental strength in order to become a person who has valuable qualities such as determination, persistence, tranquillity, passion, patience and dedication.

Appreciate your obstacles. Although that may sound bizarre, it is important to realise that hard situations often trigger success down the line. Setbacks often force people to look objectively at a situation in order to realise what is working and what isn't.

Ignore naysayers. Remember that when you aim high in life, there are always going to be people who try to discourage you or get you down. Drown out their negativity and concentrate on those who encourage you, and also on your goal of self-improvement.

Picture success clearly. If you truly want to achieve something, vividly imagine it in your head. Envision everything that you want to happen, down to the smallest details. Define your exact goal and constantly repeat it in your head in order to commit to it 100 per cent.

Acquaint yourself with new things. To be a mentally strong person, you need to be highly adaptable when it comes to new environments and situations. Go out of your way to leave your comfort zone at least once a day, whether you shop at a different grocery store or take a different scenic path on your daily walk.

Embrace fear. Fear is never pleasant, but it is vital to realise that without a measure of fear, you will never be able to take risks and conquer new situations. Avoid letting fear eat away at you. Identify that it is a normal and natural response to new and uncharted territory.

Stop complaining. Instead of whining about something, exert that mental energy on developing a solution.

Decide that "no" is not an option. Mental strength is about sheer determination and never giving up, no matter how many difficulties you encounter along the way. Understand that highs and lows are inevitable, and that without weathering the storm, you will never accomplish your goal. Patience, time and endurance are key elements to possessing a strong mind.


Surround yourself with individuals who are mentally strong and who have accomplished positive things despite setbacks. Stay away from people who just complain and do nothing to improve their situations. Learn by example in order to develop a strong mind.

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About the Author

Lars Tramilton has been writing professionally since 2007. His work has appeared in a variety of online publications, including CareerWorkstation. Tramilton received a bachelor's degree with a focus on elementary education from Kean University.