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Success Lesson from the Special Forces Green Berets

Success Lesson from the Special Forces Green Berets

    I spent over twenty years in the military. The last thirteen years I was a Special Forces Green Beret. Due to the critical nature of our missions, training in the Special Forces was a high priority.  We trained on every aspect of  whatever the particular mission was at hand e.g reconnaissance, ambush, hostage rescue.  A big part of our training was mindset.  We put specific items in the training event to boost our confidence in our abilities.  Doubt could be a  mission stopper.

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    Use Confidence Boosters

    One of the confidence boosters that we used in the Green Berets was that we trained for success.  Don’t get me wrong, we had contingency plan upon contingency plan in case something went wrong.  We used the acronym PACE – Primary, Alternate, Contingency Emergency. Each critical step of the mission had a PACE sequence.  If the primary way in would not work, we went to the alternate, then to the contingency, and finally to the emergency.  This was all done in planning and we would rehearse and even drill each other on the team on the different PACE variations for different parts of the mission.

    What I mean though by training for success is that we did not expect failure.  “Failure is not an option” has become trite after its use in the media, but it was reality for us.  First, what you think of has a way of becoming real. We did not focus on what would happen if we did not succeed.  We focused on making ourselves the best and best prepared to accomplish whatever the mission was.  We did not think about things going wrong.  We thought about fluid situations and how we would improvise, adapt and overcome for mission success. It is a totally different mindset from thinking what is going to go wrong.

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    Train to Win

    Also we trained to win.  Every mission was rehearsed, sometimes to the point of ad nausea.  Even we were totally sick of training and rehearsing, we always… always won at the end.  When we cleared a building and rescued the hostages, we might get shot if we were using paintballs against real people acting as the bad guys.  The Special Forces team members would never go down, even if shot by the paintballs.  To do so would be to train our minds for failure.  We would keep moving, finishing the mission with the rest of the team.  Later on, we would get the ribbing about the red paint marks on our uniforms and reflect what we could have done better to have avoided being shot.

    We did this because, it might give us a few more seconds in real combat. By training ourselves to instantly fall if shot by paintballs, we would have been training ourselves to instantly fall when shot in real life.  It doesn’t have to be that way.  Many times you can continue to move after taking a round and perhaps eliminate the threat that put the bullet in you. To immediately lay down would be a death sentence.

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    What are you doing in your life where you immediately lay down when something doesn’t go right?  Train yourself to continue to drive on, finishing up what you started. If you practice expecting success and not laying down for failure you will start seeing more and more successful moments instead of others.

    (Photo credit: Man jump through the gap via Shutterstock)

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    Last Updated on June 13, 2019

    5 Fixes For Common Sleep Issues All Couples Deal With

    5 Fixes For Common Sleep Issues All Couples Deal With

    Sleeping next to your partner can be a satisfying experience and is typically seen as the mark of a stable, healthy home life. However, many more people struggle to share a bed with their partner than typically let on. Sleeping beside someone can decrease your sleep quality which negatively affects your life. Maybe you are light sleepers and you wake each other up throughout the night. Maybe one has a loud snoring habit that’s keeping the other awake. Maybe one is always crawling into bed in the early hours of the morning while the other likes to go to bed at 10 p.m.

    You don’t have to feel ashamed of finding it difficult to sleep with your partner and you also don’t have to give up entirely on it. Common problems can be addressed with simple solutions such as an additional pillow. Here are five fixes for common sleep issues that couples deal with.

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    1. Use a bigger mattress to sleep through movement

    It can be difficult to sleep through your partner’s tossing and turning all night, particularly if they have to get in and out of bed. Waking up multiple times in one night can leave you frustrated and exhausted. The solution may be a switch to a bigger mattress or a mattress that minimizes movement.

    Look for a mattress that allows enough space so that your partner can move around without impacting you or consider a mattress made for two sleepers like the Sleep Number bed.[1] This bed allows each person to choose their own firmness level. It also minimizes any disturbances their partner might feel. A foam mattress like the kind featured in advertisements where someone jumps on a bed with an unspilled glass of wine will help minimize the impact of your partner’s movements.[2]

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    2. Communicate about scheduling conflicts

    If one of you is a night owl and the other an early riser, bedtime can become a source of conflict. It’s hard for a light sleeper to be jostled by their partner coming to bed four hours after them. Talk to your partner about negotiating some compromises. If you’re finding it difficult to agree on a bedtime, negotiate with your partner. Don’t come to bed before or after a certain time, giving the early bird a chance to fully fall asleep before the other comes in. Consider giving the night owl an eye mask to allow them to stay in bed while their partner gets up to start the day.

    3. Don’t bring your technology to bed

    If one partner likes bringing devices to bed and the other partner doesn’t, there’s very little compromise to be found. Science is pretty unanimous on the fact that screens can cause harm to a healthy sleeper. Both partners should agree on a time to keep technology out of the bedroom or turn screens off. This will prevent both partners from having their sleep interrupted and can help you power down after a long day.

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    4. White noise and changing positions can silence snoring

    A snoring partner can be one of the most difficult things to sleep through. Snoring tends to be position-specific so many doctors recommend switching positions to stop the snoring. Rather than sleeping on your back doctors recommend turning onto your side. Changing positions can cut down on noise and breathing difficulties for any snorer. Using a white noise fan, or sound machine can also help soften the impact of loud snoring and keep both partners undisturbed.

    5. Use two blankets if one’s a blanket hog

    If you’ve got a blanket hog in your bed don’t fight it, get another blanket. This solution fixes any issues between two partners and their comforter. There’s no rule that you have to sleep under the same blanket. Separate covers can also cut down on tossing and turning making it a multi-useful adaptation.

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    Rather than giving up entirely on sharing a bed with your partner, try one of these techniques to improve your sleeping habits. Sleeping in separate beds can be a normal part of a healthy home life, but compromise can go a long way toward creating harmony in a shared bed.

    Featured photo credit: Becca Tapert via unsplash.com

    Reference

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