Powerful words from David Goggins.
“No one is going to come help you. No one is coming to save you.”
I posted the above quote on social media today and wasn’t expecting what followed.
I received a lot of “You ok? posts”, phone calls and a fair amount of concern it seems.
I get that. I’m seen as someone who brings positivity to people.
On one hand, the response reminded me that there are always people watching that care.
Also, I find myself reflecting on a personal journey that’s been both challenging and illuminating.
For the past four years, I’ve poured my heart and soul into Force Forward, a mission aimed toward championing physical and mental well-being of our ex-forces. Re-connecting and supporting ex-colleagues & friends, sharing stories and inspiring action.
The stark reality of friends losing their lives to the pitfalls of alcohol has been a haunting motivator, one that almost claimed me too. The camaraderie amongst my old colleagues is vehemently recognisable, yet with every passing day, I feel less like the person I used to be.
A recent reunion served as poignant reminder; an old friend drank too much & fell asleep in a jacuzzi—an unsettling snapshot of the challenges faced. Let’s not consider the ‘What if’s’ here. We got him out and he was fine…
Embracing the Uncomfortable Truth
Life can be tough, and many among us face challenges daily. Societal conditioning moulds us to often discourage seeking help. After getting help myself a few years ago I started Force Forward, to help others. Each of my endeavors, including reunions, creation of online programs, free events, the #JFDI podcast & radio shows, and most recently qualifying as a Wim Hof instructor (cold water therapy and breathwork) have come at a significant personal cost. Financially, I have invested thousands of pounds and whilst this was never about ‘making money’ there are moments when it feels like the ‘well-being’ point I’ve been striving for has been missed.
The Illusion of Social Media Support
In the age of social media, we find virtual spaces where people seemingly ‘reach out.’ However, this can be deceptive. Many suffer in silence, never truly asking for help due to the stigma attached to vulnerability. The carefully constructed show reels of our lives we present on social platforms often mask the battles within.
And whilst these platforms offer a semblance of connection, they cannot replace the power of authentic human interaction. Behind the likes and shares, there’s a deeper need for real conversations, for acknowledging that it’s okay not to be okay.
The Brave Act of Asking for Help
Asking for help is an act of bravery. However, the journey doesn’t end there.
The true challenge lies in being prepared to put in the work.
Goggins’ words are a call to action. They remind us that self-responsibility doesn’t stop at seeking help; it extends to the relentless commitment to confronting our inner battles head-on and doing the uncomfortable work required for lasting change.
I see too many people still flatly refusing to admit they have a problem. Many acknowledge they need to make changes but perhaps life hasn’t kicked them hard enough to make those changes yet.
Then there are those too afraid to break from their norm, through fear of being mocked by a ‘work hard – play hard’ culture.
Answer this please anyone…
Why is it still socially acceptable to poison the body and willingly impact ones physical and mental health?
Every time scientists have convened in the last 20 or more years, alcohol has ranked as the most dangerous drug, most recently ranked as three times more dangerous than cocaine.
Look, I’m no angel and my past is what it is. I’m in no way anti-drink.. but please, dont tell me you are living a ‘happy life’ that involves numbing your senses with alcohol every weekend (or every day) You’re kidding nobody! At the same time, zero judgement here. Everyone has to let loose every now and then but at what cost?
Breaking Free from Excuses
Blaming others, making excuses, and hiding behind habits that don’t serve us are pitfalls on the path to self-improvement but the onus is on us to take control of our narratives. That requires a deep, internal commitment to change and the courage to face uncomfortable truths about ourselves.
I’ve had lots of excuses of my own in the past!
The #JFDI mindset was born when, through action, I dispelled many of these myths, smashed through procrastination and just got on with it.
I used to have so much need for external validation… but along the way I realised we are all just making it up as we go. Another great read ‘The Subtle Art of not Giving a F%^K’ by Mark Manson helped me realise that so many of these thoughts we have about others perceptions of us are just that… our thoughts. Most of the time, other people are far too consumed with their own lives to be giving much thought to ours.
I like to believe that nowadays I choose the F%&K’s I give wisely. And, much like in my earlier years, have reverted to giving very few f*&k’s where it does not serve me.
That has brought realisation— and a couple of pivotal moments have led me to believe it’s time for another shift.
In the face of personal sacrifices, financial setbacks, and the persistent need for change, I recently approached my local council to ask if my passions & skills could be of use. Four months on and the weekly breathwork & cold water exposure at a local hub is already proving a success. On week 2 one lady told me she thought that on Week 1 I was lying about the inflammatory benefits of cold water exposure.. but within a week, she was amazed at the difference it had made to her life. And the testimonials continue.
This calling to redirect my energy towards my community, which urgently needs support, feels like the right time to shift Force Forward’s endeavours.
Conclusion: The Journey of Self-Rescue
The journey of self-rescue is not about waiting for a saviour; it’s about becoming one for ourselves. It’s about understanding that, while asking for help is an essential step, the real transformation happens when we actively participate.
So, the next time life gets tough, remember, no one is coming to save you.
But also remember that within you lies the power to navigate through the storm, emerge stronger, and become the hero of your own story.
It’s a journey of self-responsibility, courage, and the unwavering belief that you are indeed capable of changing whatever it is you need to.
And me.. well, whilst my initial efforts may not have yielded the rewards I hoped for, they have sparked a realisation that my focus needs redirection. Podcasts, radio shows and Force Forward events may well return.
Now feels like the right time to be more mindful of what I post and where I post it… Social media platforms have served as a means of connection but they’ve also, at times, obscured the genuine struggles behind curated profiles. Something I think we should all consider.