John Crace forces-out the retired US admiral and special ops officers self-help volume to do 500 press-ups
On 17 May 2014, I was asked to give a speech at the graduation rite of my alma mater, the University of Texas. I chose to tell them the 10 lessons I had learned during my 34 -year career as a navy SEAL. I hope you enjoy them rather more than they did.
1 Start off by making your couch
The barracks at basic SEAL training is a nondescript building in Coronado, California. Chambers are spartan, with a simple steel bed on which there is a mattress, two sheets and a gray blanket. Every morning, we would have to attain our beds. If the chore wasnt done properly, we would be sent on a 10 -mile run. Stimulating my bed taught me the importance of getting my day off to a good start. Years later, when we finally captured Saddam Hussein in Iraq, I was intrigued to notice that “hes never” stimulated his couch. Its that kind of laziness that can lead to the downfall of any dictator.
2 Find someone to help you paddle
During my SEAL training, we had to learn to paddle a barge in a crew of 7. Sometimes, one of the recruits was a bit tired this is why we didnt go as fast as the other barge and the officers would attain us all do 500 press-ups when we got back to the beach. This taught me the meaning of team work. And also to never get in a boat with person I thought was a bit of a loser.
3 Measure a person by the size of their heart
Just because you are small, it doesnt mean you are a failing. The guy with the biggest flippers is not ever the man you want next to you in a crisis. During one mission behind enemy lines in Afghanistan, I got stuck inside a tight passageway. Fortunately, I was with a man who was only 5ft tall. He was able to run for assistance. Saddam Hussein had big flippers.
4 Get over has become a carbohydrate cookie
In all of SEAL training, there was no worse penalty than being coated in wet sand like a carbohydrate cookie and not being allowed to wash for three weeks. One morning, after I had successfully completed an exercise, the instructor “ve told me” roll in the sand. Do you know why you are a carbohydrate cookie? he asked me. I replied that I didnt. Because life is unfair, he said. This taught me that life was unfair. Get over it. Shit happens. So what if you lose a leg in a car accident? At least, youve got one good one left.
5 Dont be afraid of the Circus
The Circus was a brutal session of callisthenics that transgressed many SEAL recruits because they were afraid of it. I wasnt afraid of it so it didnt break me. If youre frightened, you lose. Saddam Hussein was afraid of the Circus.
6 Be prepared to jump
In SEAL training, we had to find the quickest style of get down from a 60 -metre tower. I systematically failed this test by using the zip wire. It was only when I was prepared to hurl myself off head first that I passed. The multiple leg fractures I incurred were more than worth it. Sometimes you just have to show initiative.