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Book Review on Can’t Hurt Me by David Goggins

Hello Readers, Welcome back! As my princess grows, I am finding less time for blogging! Nevertheless, thanks to her Nani and Nanu who ensure that the little one and mommy is pampered to find few moments to read and write. Today, I have for you one of the most inspiring books since I know we all have faced challenges that have deterred us to achieve our goals. In fact, today we live in one of the most pressing times where we are fighting from corona pandemic and praying for all to stay safe. All this compel us to believe life is unfair and sooner we accept it sooner we can prepare for it! Can’t Hurt Me is an ultimate underdog book, which not only help us develop Can’t Hurt Me mentality but also help in building a strong mindset.

I recently read the book “Can’t Hurt Me” by author David Goggins. This book is truly the personification of Grit. In this autobiography, we can catch the glimpse into the rawest yet unflinching determination of the former Navy SEAL. Witness the journey of transformation of an abusive child on welfare to an employee suffocated in a dead-end job into a person who is now the 36th African-American SEAL in US who has performed 300-pound extermination. As you read through the pages of the book, you realise that it isn’t just any other motivational book with its pep-talk! One can comprehend sheer amount of pain, exertion and struggle in the most vivid details. He is one of the very few who has completed Navy SEAL “Hell Week” training, not just once but twice and created a new record in the US Navy. Running through broken shins and developing himself as elite ultra-marathoner and eventually working as wildland firefighter in city. Goggins and his journey can’t help but be inspiring. In these eleven chapters you will find lines straight from his heart that encourages one to smile at pain and urges one to believe that success comes to those who can channelise very best when they feel their worst.

The central premise of the book is about nurturing mental strength and discipline, which David refers as “calloused mind” that can drive us through our perceived limits. This book talks to everyone, whether you are just beginning in your career or are a seasoned professional, whether your dreams is to be in defense or to reach to the top of your profession or maybe to live a healthier life. David’s story has powerful lessons for all who wants to shake their limitations and aspires to achieve their goals. I have encapsulated my top 5 learning from the toughest man in the world.

Lesson 1: Stop the Pity Party and Get Real with Yourself

I have read so many books that talk about redemption, in all these stories I have observed often the extreme change begins when the person hits rock bottom. In case of David, he felt he had hit his rock bottom realising that he is extremely overweight, high schooler who is barely passing through his studies. It was that moment when David actually changed by introspecting his fears, challenges and weakness. In his actual words that I want to quote from the book, “I didn’t dance around and said, Oh Geez! I haven’t taking the education seriously instead, if I haven’t taken school seriously, I will acknowledge it and tell myself that I need to get my ass to work because I am lagging behind in life.”

Hey, you don’t need to hit your rock bottom to have your defining moment. Just try to do honest introspection about yourself and the areas of improvement in professional as well as personal life. My recommendation is to be brutally honest and identify your enemy. Then you will comprehend what is actually stopping you to achieve your goal and where you actually need to improve!

Lesson 2: Make Mirror your Best Friend

One of the most incredible hacks of life right from horse’s mouth is the Accountability Mirror. David’s hack implies to prime yourself in direction of your goals. This involves simple things like pasting sticky notes around the frame of the mirror that always helps you to see your goals as well as the actions required to achieve them. Every time David used to see himself in the mirror, he used to review his notes that used to keep him grounded and driven.

I mean just think about it, majority of time we set our goals in life, interestingly write it down and then close the diary or put the paper in the drawer. Eventually, we avoid to confront them since we didn’t put in enough efforts to actually work on them. You see our mind is trained to find the comfort zone! David says by clearly putting the goals in the plain sight can help in channelising energy and mind to achieve them. Think about the feeling when you actually achieve your goal and place that image where you can see it daily like in bathroom or bedroom mirror. Try it out for yourself, take out those sticky notes and break down your goals in those yellow pages. Paste it where you can see them every day that will act as a constant reminder of what you want to achieve in life. This can help you to push yourself towards the goal. Once you achieve those goals, you can check them off and place a win on your board. The rush of Dopamine giving you gratification of success will become a fuel to achieve your long-term vision

Lesson 3: Visualisation

David says, before even he became a Navy SEAL, he had visualised it. No! he didn’t see himself wearing that uniform in his dreams rather actually experienced succeeding in his mind. He had imagined going through training, diving into ice-cold water and literally crushing through Hell Week. This strategy helped him to become an ultra-runner. Not only, he created a race plan but also visualised the feeling he would get at each point in the race. He visualised success as well as the potential challenges.

Now, I know you must be thinking, Parul, we can’t prepare for everything. Sure, that is true, but if we can engage in strategic visualisation ahead of time we can be as prepared as one can possibly be. Many Olympian do this before their race. One can see them visualising the race, going through various mental run-through and anticipating how one will feel both mentally and physically. Therefore, let’s start today to list down your tasks on the way to achieve your ultimate goal and visualise everything, the challenges you will face, how will you face them and how will you succeed them.


Lesson 4: The 40% rule

In order to be eligible for Navy SEAL, David had a herculin’s task to lose more than 100 pounds in 3 months. In order to achieve this goal, he had to put himself in marathon every day. On days where he had skipped the last rep in the training, David says that last rep haunted him, there was a constant feeling that if we cut corners in the training, he wouldn’t be able to achieve our dreams.

We probably aren’t as dedicated in the gym as Goggins but it is a fact that cutting out when it gets difficult will sure never allow us to elevate ourselves to the next level. One should progressively overload the difficulty in the training, such that each workout or learning phase you plan, there should be more work than you did last time. We need to apply this rationale not only in our workouts but also in our professional and personal life. Use it as a new benchmark! For instance, during my maternity, I am trying to read record number of books in a given month. This because when I look back, I will reflect it as a period where I was not only nursing my new-born but also training myself for the intellectual growth. And boy, it is challenging! But that’s the real kick out of it, you have to commit and not quit when it gets difficult.

Lesson 5: Know your Why

This is one of the powerful lessons from David Goggins to comprehend what is your purpose! Knowing the purpose will help you stay in the fight even when you are down and broke. It will give you strength to fight it and win it eventually! Did you know David had massive medical complications while he was training for the Hell Week. He was detected with hole in his heart but that didn’t stop him to become the toughest man in the world. Perhaps earning this title demands numerous days where he was sleepless, stretched with different tests that not only were physical in nature but also mental. Goggins says the only thing that kept moving forward is his purpose.

Whenever you face any discomfort in life or are in difficult situation that can take your focus from your goals to your emotion, remind yourself of your purpose. If you have an answer ready, you will be prepared to motivate yourself. It helps you to ignore the pain rather will give you strength to embrace it. Answers to Why am I here will help us to overlook the challenges and focus on ways to keep moving forward. So, take a step back from this chase and introspect your why!

Life experience of David has tremendously inspired me to overcome by challenges and continue to persevere in the middle of adversity. Personally, he constantly reminds me to be stronger version of myself, set clear goals and continue to put efforts until my goals are achieved. This book offers grounded ethos to help push and continue to break the psychological boundaries in order to gain the true potential.

Hope you Enjoyed & Lemme know your Feedback! Connect with me in case you are interested in the Book….Cheers!


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Stronger Together!

Hey there, I'm Parul, working in one of the Big 4s of consulting! 💼

By day, I'm decoding the business matrix, but by night, I transform into a book ninja, stealthily navigating the worlds crafted by the greatest authors📚✨


What's the secret sauce to my consulting wizardry, you ask? It's the lessons learned from the pages of both leadership meetings, strategies and bestselling novels 😉


I'm not just crunching numbers; I'm crunching captivating narratives 💖

Buckle up for insights that transcend industries and a blog where business acumen meets the magic of storytelling


#ConsultantLife #BusinessAndBooks 🌟

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