In society I think there is a misconception about what it truly means to be “tuff minded”. Tuff is not relentlessly going through life, guarding yourself against other people who cross your path, getting them before they get you. That is not the makings of a tuff mind. Rather I believe a tuff mind evaluates situations, developing the best approach that builds people up along the way.
Caring for others, in a world that screams competition; now that’s a tuff mind.
I watched a documentary and it made an interesting point that we are conditioned to compete from the get-go (there are some cultures that do not follow this approach). Firstly when we are placed in school where there is ample competition with peers, then entering into university MAJOR competitioand and lastly entering into the work force. All our peers are considered competition; standing in the way of us recieving potential awards, raises or promotions… competition, competition, competition. In order to succeed we have to pull away from the rest, leave them in the dust, step on a few small people to get to where we need to be. Casualties are inevitable right? Wrong.
This misguided belief, suggests there is no winning as a collective group. Instead we must strive to stand alone making our mark above the rest. But truth be told people get lonely standing apart from everyone, because we are not meant to be alone. It’s not in our nature. What one person can do alone is weak compared to the potential strength a group of people offers.
People are not tuff based on their “individual successes”. What truly makes someone tuff? Reaching the top while bringing others up with you, especially as people tell you it’s a waste of time and energy. That takes true strength and requires a tender heart. When you succeed and share your knowledge, you create a fulfilling life ultimatly yielding greater success. And when I refer to success I’m not solely referring to monitory value. I’m referring to life as a whole, living and feeling alive with purpose, now that is success.
*** Side note: I’m not condemning all competition because I myself am a very competitive person BUT the difference is as I compete with myself to be a better version of me I DO NOT put others down in the process (at least that is NEVER my intention). Putting others down is never necessary in order to achieve our personal goals. Winning and losing is a part of life and doesn’t singularly determine and define our value OR the value of someone else.
Put your tuff mind and a tender heart to good use, grow and inspire and lift others up along the way.