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Willing The Human Psyche: An Exploration Into Overcoming Adversity…

Willing The Human Psyche: An Exploration Into Overcoming Adversity…



It angers the piss out of me whenever I look around in society today and see our culture diminishing in character and individuality more and more. Today it seems as if the media and a certain supporting cast of like minded idiots want to throw a blanket of security over the public and feed them an element of BS by attaching the word FAIRNESS to the message. Yep, I said it and today I’m here to tell you brother “Life ain’t fair,” but it can be managed! Follow me if you want to explore a message about overcoming adversity.

The Mountain…

No, you didn’t click onto the wrong blog site my friend. You are right where you thought you should be! So I remember back in 2002 walking out of the weight room at the Butts-Mehre building in Athens, Georgia on the Monday following the Dawgs loss to the much hated rivals… the Florida Gators. Up until that point we had dominated pretty much everyone we had played and the team’s mood was pretty somber that day. I clearly remember walking out to the field to watch the players start practice after being fortunate to help the team with an in season workout. Right before the team and coaches got set to go Coach Richt called everyone over to the center and had us all take a knee.

He looked across the squad of players and coaches, took his hat off of his head, and slicked his hair back before putting the hat back on. It was as if he was searching for a way to communicate something very important to the team. He stood tall and stated (paraphrasing) “Men what I’m about to tell you may surprise you, but the truth is that adversity doesn’t build one’s character…it reveals it!” Wow, I thought to myself that I never really thought of it that way. It was as if a lightbulb had gone off inside my head. The message he continued to relay to the team was this “So what are you going to do about it? What are you made of? Well, I guess we’re going to find out!”

As the story goes boy did we find out. That year the team went on to win out the season and destroyed Arkansas in the SEC championship game. It wasn’t even close. Look the fact is that adversity comes in many shapes and sizes and sometimes it can even present itself to us as something that may be compared figuratively to the size of a Mount Everest in its totality. I’ve met a lot of people in my day and the fact is that some people have life stories that will make you thank God everyday for each and every breath you have left in your body.

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On The Flip Side…

On the flip side overcoming adversity for a lot of people is NOT even a mountain they would try to climb for themselves. Now with this part of the discussion I’m going to manage to piss some people OFF and if so then GREAT, because that kind of  reaction and show of SPIRIT is most likely a sign that you need to make some changes. If you have this kind of reaction then it should be a part of what you should use to overcome whatever obstacle you are facing rather than trying to make excuses and throw the responsibility off onto something or somebody else!

So Brandon what are you talking about? I’m talking about the other side of the coin. I’m talking about a state of mind problem that I notice in today’s society. I notice a society here in the states that has its share of the population that is full of excuse makers, finger pointers, and liars. It seems that there is a large fraction of the populous that uses the excuse of “Well so and so is gaming the system, therefore it’s ok for me to do the same.” Well I would say to these a*s clowns that NO IT’S NOT!

With this group of people there always seems to be an overwhelming acceptance of a mindset that frequently involves blaming the previous guy or girl for their own shortcomings. Now I promise you with this post I’m NOT trying to post up a political argument, but you see this from our so-called leaders in Washington all the time. They never, and I mean NEVER, take responsibility for their individual choices, their individual decisions, and as a result their individual outcomes. It is always someone else’s fault, or someone else did this or that before ME therefore it makes my screw up acceptable and ok.

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Just to clear something up true “leaders” don’t do that. A true leader has strength and humility. Humility meaning they have the balls to admit where they are wrong. A true leader should be defined by this trait, NOT just from the fact that he or she happens to be operating from a position of strength. Once again, life is easy when you’re on top of Mount Everest, but what happens when you get knocked down to its base? There is a whole different perspective from the bottom looking up than from the top looking down my friend.

A Culture Of Weakness…

Look, all I’m saying is that a large fraction of people in today’s society overwhelmingly abuse certain systems and other people in ways to avoid facing their own problems whether those problems happen to be financial, psychological, emotional, or physical in nature. They would rather depend on a pill or drug to be prescribed for a condition that really is only made up to help them avoid facing reality.  Oh you’re a fat ass so now you want to get half your stomach pinched off with a band so you don’t eat as much. Really? So the fact is that this band is really only suppressing your appetite which is what you can do with your mind, yet nowadays it’s considered a medical problem if you don’t have the discipline to avoid eating that gigantic plate of fries? I call bull sh*t! It’s not a medical problem it’s called WEAKNESS.

This culture of weakness in turn makes life even harder for those folks that actually need the help and are trying their damned level best at facing their own problems head on. All I’m saying is that it takes a strong will and a strong character to overcome adversity, but the human psyche is at the center of the whole thing! It takes balls to overcome adversity. It takes spirit to overcome adversity, and last but not least by overcoming adversity you build strength, and when you happen to have a nice group of folks that accept this then all of the sudden you have a community and culture of strength.

I know some people have it very hard. Hell you may have an extremely hard situation and you may be reading this saying Brandon you don’t know what the hell you’re talking about! I would reply that I don’t know what obstacles you’re facing, but you know I’m right, otherwise you wouldn’t have wasted this much time reading this post because if you’re problems aren’t that legit then you are more likely to sit here and want to formulate an argument as to why I’m wrong. I’m not trying to be the guy that is coming down on you or anybody else ( if you happen to believe you are part of the negative group that is being targeted), but I am pointing out some very real and damaging truths and these are evident in society nowadays more than ever.

I don’t care how bad you think you have it somebody else out there in the world always has it worse. It’s all perspective. I also don’t want to be the guy to preach the roll your sleeves up and get to work cheer, but I do want to be the guy to say I want to encourage an environment of positivity and strength.

Social Mentality And Acceptance…

I’m no psychologist, but to me much of the weakness resulting in those failures of overcoming adversity, and to you and me adversity has relative meaning, sort of falls in line with a mob mentality. Really? A mob mentality? Do I mean like rioting and breaking shit in the streets? Well sort of, but let me explain a little further.

You see in psychology the mob mentality basically describes that when people are part of a group they experience deindividuation. This means they lose their sense of individuality during a certain point which is why the mob can turn violent. In the individual’s mind they feel that destruction of property or violence absolves them of any responsibility because “everyone” was doing it. So if the group does it then it’s ok, right? Well that last statement pretty much sums it up my friend.

You see everyday on TV, the internet, radio, video games, and whatever other kind of outlet you can think of we get the message of it’s ok because everyone else is doing it. Group responsibility is better than individual responsibility which is why we have the majority of our problems. If we relate this to the health and fitness industry it’s ok to take that drug, to eat that 5th hamburger, or to blame others for my failures at losing weight because that’s what everybody else does, right? Everyone else does it so it must be ok! This is the sort of mob mentality I’m talking about with our society today and you even have a culture all around you that supports, preaches, and fosters this attitude of weakness. It’s a culture of weakness.

The good news is that in reality, regardless of what adversity you may be facing, you ARE an individual. You have individual choices, individual responsibilities, and individual outcomes. Every choice you make can either support the mob mentality, or help to reverse course towards a culture of strength, or strength culture! At the end of the day you can pick which team you want to be a part of in overcoming adversity of your own.

If you need a little more insight to help you overcome adversity related to your strength and conditioning program then make sure you get a copy of my Brandon Richey’s Better Than Steroids ebook right here today. I’ve slashed the price and would love to have you onboard. No worries I’ll be back to my regular sarcastic self in the next blogisode too. Your questions and comments are welcome in the comment box below. Remember that most anyone can be part of the mob mentality, but it takes strength to be an individual!





I'm a Certified Strength And Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and author. I have had over 17 years experience in MMA fitness, strength and conditoning, and athletic performance for most every sport. As an author and specialist I've written close to a million words on fitness and strength. I'm also a Muay Thai practictioner and enjoy helping others to reach their peak potential through fitness and performance.

This Post Has 2 Comments
  1. I agree with you 100% Brandon. I see it personally myself. I actually worked with someone who started working with us after I had been there two years.He always went to the all you can eat buffets. Also, was extremely overweight to the point where just walking a short distance would have him winded and panting.

    Well guess what? He collected disability and had a parking spot in the garage that CEO would be envious of. The problem was not he was disabled. Rather he had no self control over his diet thus abusing the system.


    1. Wow Chad that is crazy! That guy is the exact type I’m targeting right here in this post. Stuff like that just pisses me off to the core. We are a culture of weakness in many ways and sadly it is growing. Thanks for sharing that my friend. I know you don’t have that problem. Keep kicking ass and taking names my friend! 🙂

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