“Welcome to Hell!” says instructor Zinke with a sideways smile. “I assume you’re checking into Hotel Hell Week…or did you come to quit like the rest?”
Hell Week? Oh yeah, you think to yourself. I’m here for Hell Week all right, and scared shitless. “Yes Sir, I am here for Hell Week, and no sir, you would have to kill me to get me to quit.”
Instantly you regret those words. Zinke stares right through you and says: “no problem, if that’s what it’s gonna take!”
Seventy teammates, out of one hundred and eighty who started seven weeks ago, remain. They shove gear in duffel bags, stencil t-shirts, and prepare themselves for the coming challenge. Holy cow, I’m finally doing this. I’m about to jump into the abyss. Am I ready?
After a few awkward jokes, your teammates retire to their racks for a final snooze before the games begin. Next comes five days and nights of brutal, around the clock, training. You sit on your rack to review your worn copy of “8 Weeks to SEALFIT.” Recalling that Kokoro means “merging of heart and mind in action,” you’re going to need all the kokoro spirit you can muster.
Coach Divine’s words pierce your thoughts: “Find a quiet place to prepare your mind.” An hour before it all begins you head to the beach…
The Mental Game
It’s unusually quiet, the calm before the storm. You look beyond the waves and soften your eyes, slipping into the meditative state you learned at SEALFIT. After about five minutes of sitting and watching the waves roll in, your mind is still water running deep. You review the physical and mental milestones met in preparation for this moment.
Hours upon hours of physical training from basic, to intermediate, to advanced operator workouts. You’re ready for this. You review what you know about Hell Week as if watching a movie in your mind. You see yourself strong, injury free, alert and ready to lead, ready to follow, never quitting. That’s who you are! Next you review your strategy and tactics for winning:
•What’s my ultimate goal? Not just to survive, but to thrive.
•Why did I come here? To meet myself for the first time, and earn the honor of wearing the trident.
•How do I expect to achieve this? One ordinary moment at a time, using extraordinary effort.
•What resources do I have to draw upon? My strong mind, my strong body, my indomitable spirit, and my teammates.
“There’s still time left. Good, I need it to “dirt dive” the event.”
To be continued next time…
P.S. Happy Memorial Day weekend. I would like to give thanks and take a moment to remember all of those that have given their lives in the name of serving our country.