Remember Why!

usmcHere’s a recent letter I wrote to a hardcharger that’s just now hitting the real challenges at Parris Island.

While it pertains specifically to a military paradigm, it resonates regardless of what the challenge may be.

And it’s Biblical, too!

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. (Gal 6:9)

Enjoy and get it done…



…even when you can brave the physical and mental tests of Basic Training, you still have to keep it together in your gut because that’s where everything else is getting its fuel from (see Prov 4:23).

By “gut,” I’m talking about your heart. It’s where you answer the question, “Why?”

Scripture talks about it in the context of what it is that makes you tick – what it is that makes you the person that you are. In the most practical sense, it’s where you answer questions like:

  • What do I believe and why do I believe it?
  • Why am I doing this?

You can endure pretty much anything as long as you can mentally default to a “reason” for what it is that you’re having to contend with that makes it worthwhile.

One of the reasons people wind up pursuing their fitness goals rather than realizing them is because the inconvenience of the gym and the discipline that goes along with a strategic diet becomes a burden and they just quit.

On the other hand, the people who wind up losing weight and getting in shape are those that have a reason for getting ripped that goes beyond their reflection in the mirror. Athletes are training for a victory, actors are training for a role…

…and you are training for a title that you’re going to have for the rest of your life.

That title represents discipline, fitness, patriotism, sacrifice, maturity and a host of other noble characteristics that you find in all branches of the military but the Marine Corps especially because of the way in which the USMC Basic Training is constructed.

And you’re feeling it right now.

People who are interested in nothing more than a pretty uniform and an impressive title aren’t really interested in anything other then their vanity.

But guys like you see more than that.

You see the legacy of the Corps, you see the purpose for the USMC and the reason WHY training has to be like it is in order to ensure someone who’s mentally, physically and – wait for it – spiritually prepared for your career as a Marine.

I say, “spiritually,” but it’s your heart, your gut – it’s that place where you have answered the question, “Why!” And because you can answer that question, you can keep moving forward with a legitimately positive disposition…

  • when the DI is on your back
  • when you’re feeling sick
  • when you’re missing your family
  • when you’re missing your wife and kids
  • when you’re in a lot of pain
  • when your fellow recruits are acting like total butt socks…
  • when you don’t get the job

You get the idea.

Remember why you’re doing this and be intentional about removing those things that are self serving. Not because “self serving” is necessarily bad all the time, but because gratifying yourself is a lot easier in the context of quitting or overeating or being lazy. Even if your subconscious doesn’t process it that way, it’s a hidden cancer that will short circuit every goal you ever establish in life.

Remember why and get it done!

Go get ‘em, hardcharger!

Let me know when you get home so we can go to Red Robin!

Semper Fi, Devildog!

You’re almost there!

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