Mentally strong people: The 13 Things They Avoid

Mentally strong people

What makes people like Michael Jordon, Abraham Lincoln and Oprah so special?

They are all mentally strong people who failed countless times and who went through the most challenging times of their life to end up being spectacularly successful.

Michael Jordon missed 9,000 shots in his career, lost almost 300 games. 26 times, he’s been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed.

Before being president Abraham Lincoln lost his job, was defeated for state legislature, failed in business, faced the death of his wife, had a nervous breakdown, was defeated for speaker, was defeated for Congress nomination, got rejected for land officer, was defeated for US Senate but also for both nomination for Vice President and US Senate.

Oprah lived a traumatic childhood. From the ages of 9 to 13 she was repeatedly molested. At 14 she was out of her home and on her own. The same year she gave birth to a baby boy who died in infancy.

Understanding how these people got so successful in spite of living such hardships is difficult but as you know success always leaves clues that can help us find some explanations.

If we want to fully understand how successful people get successful we have to analyze what they do but also, and perhaps more importantly, what they don’t do to get the full picture.

So here’s what successful people don’t do.

1. Waste time feeling sorry for themselves

Mentally strong people don’t feel sorry for their circumstances. They learned early on to take responsibility for their actions and outcomes. Instead of dwelling or complaining when things doesn’t go their way, they emerge with self-awareness and gratitude for the lessons learned.

2. Give away their power

Mentally strong people knows that they are in control of their actions and emotions and for that reason they avoid giving others the power to make them feel inferior or bad.

3. Avoid change

Mentally strong people know that change is the best way to move forward in life and to progress so they embrace it instead of shying away from it. They actually see change as something stimulating.

4. Waste energy on things they can’t control

Mentally strong people don’t complain about traffic jam, lost luggage because they know that all these things are out of their control. Instead they focus on what they can control: their own response and attitude.

5. Worry about pleasing others

Mentally strong people know that always pleasing others is impossible. They do strive to please others when appropriate but are unafraid to speak up when necessary. They are aware that success implies getting some people upset.

6. Fear taking calculated risks

Risks are good and profitable when calculated. Mentally strong people have the strength to weigh the risks and benefits thoroughly. Before taking a decision they know what the potential downsides and worst-case scenarios are.

7. Dwell on the past

Mentally strong people learn from past experiences and failures but don’t dwell on past disappointment. They strive to use their mental energy to create an optimal present and future.

8.Make the same mistakes over and over

Mentally strong people accept responsibility for their behavior and learn from their past mistakes, which allows them to avoid repeating the same mistakes over and over.

9. Give up after failure

As Donald Trump says “Sometimes by losing a battle you find a new way to win the war”. It basically means that every failure is a chance to improve. Mentally strong people are willing to fail again and again because they know success is not an event but a process that involves a learning experience.

10. Resent other people’s success

Mentally strong people feel genuine joy and excitement for other’s people success. They don’t become jealous or resentful but take close notes on what the individual did well.

 11. Fear alone time

Mentally strong people treasure the time they spend alone. They use it to reflect, plan, meditate and put things into perspective.

12. Feel the world owes them anything

Mentally strong people know that the world doesn’t owe them anything. If they want something they work hard to get it.

13. Expect immediate results

Getting meaningful results takes time, getting fit takes time, starting a business takes time…Mentally strong people are well aware of it that’s why they apply their energy and time in measured doses.

Source: Amy Morin author of the book 13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do

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What about you? Do you have mental strength? Let me know in the comments below!

Simon Cave


16 comments… add one
  • Ahamdi October 31, 2014, 10:00 pm

    Hi Simon, I love this article. Every point inspires. Is it permissible for me to print and paste this article offline? Say, paste a paper copy in the town library with due credits to the sources?

    • The Becomer November 1, 2014, 2:42 pm

      Sure Ahamdi! Feel free to do it

      • Ahamdi November 1, 2014, 11:54 pm


  • Ruth November 3, 2014, 11:46 am

    True! These points are tremendous and inspiring. I looked to see if I could print them and keep them. You hit the mark on all of them.

  • Michelle November 22, 2014, 12:09 am

    These are all great points. These are things to remember throughout my life.

  • Lucy Barber December 4, 2014, 10:13 pm

    I think your post does a great job of stating the strengths in a way that separates thoughts from actions. One thing I had to learn this year in fact is that I don’t have to try and get rid of all negative thoughts. If I feel upset about the way someone has treated me and that has me thinking negatively about myself or them, it isn’t the thought that is wrong. The thought is a natural consequence of the circumstance. For a long time I was trying to change my thoughts about it to be positive. I know let the thoughts come and then choose my perspective. If someone hurts my feelings, I’ll say to myself “It’s interesting that when person xyz said abc to me I thought lmnop”. And then I will reframe and say, “Now in what way can I take what they’ve said and let it empower me instead of feeling like their statement is trying to belittle me?”

    Anyway, liked this post as it helps to show that it isn’t your thoughts about the situation that make you mentally weak, but whether you identify with those thoughts.


    • The Becomer December 10, 2014, 8:08 pm

      good point Lucy! Negative thoughts are quite natural and part of life.

  • Nokufa January 13, 2015, 12:36 pm

    I’m truely inspired. It’s the little things that we already know but we don’t use for our benefit.

  • Venkat Ramakrishnan January 18, 2015, 6:01 am

    Quite inspirational and timely for my life situation. Thanks!

  • shahzaib January 22, 2015, 9:35 pm

    thnx writer bcoz of these points i really get hints whether m going right or wrong… thnxx alot

  • George March 14, 2015, 12:32 pm

    Thanks I needed that. As a recent widower, the fog and forest is thick.

    • The Becomer March 19, 2015, 8:46 pm

      I am glad if this post can help you George!


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