Navy SEALs and Success

When you think of Navy SEAL training, one word probably comes to mind:


There’s no doubt about it, SEAL training is one of the most challenging military training courses in the world.  Strict standards must be met to qualify to even enter BUD/S (Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL training – the extremely demanding 24-week course that teaches SEALs the core skills required to be part of such an elite force).  Roughly 80% of the men who make it past the SEAL screening process fail or drop out of BUD/S. [1]

That means that the 20% that do pass – those that become SEALs – achieve an extraordinarily rare kind of success.  This kind of success is not achieved without an iron-clad will, indomitable courage, brute strength, and undeterred perseverance.

Needless to say, SEALs know a thing or two about what it takes to succeed.  When I stumbled upon this video a month or two ago, I knew I would have to share it here eventually.  Admiral McRaven is the now-retired commander of the United States Special Operations Command.  This speech is from the 2014 commencement ceremony at UTA, where he outlines 10 principles for success.  These are lessons he learned during his BUD/S experience and continued to cultivate throughout his service in the Navy, and more than worth the 20 minutes it takes to watch.

No matter the nature of your objectives – professional achievements, athletic performance, lifestyle changes, academic ambitions, or to whatever else you may aspire – these 10 principles will serve you well.

Listen up, write them down, then live them out…You’ll be hard pressed to not be met with success.

[If that’s not cause for a moto-boner, I don’t know what is.]


2 thoughts on “Navy SEALs and Success

  1. Dominique,

    Really enjoyed your blog. The Admiral’s speech was terrific. Spot on… discipline, risk taking, team work, resolute persistence, hope and the ambition to make a difference. When applied over time, especially over a lifetime, makes all the difference. When yoked with God’s plan for your life it makes for a very full life indeed. But it does not make for an easy life. I think most people, without intending to, make what they consider to be insignificant daily choices that put comfort and immediate pleasure first. Nothing wrong with seeking either of these, it would be odd not to do so, but without a dream and a sense of purpose the pursuit of safety and pleasures leads one to live a life that is not nearly so rich and full as one that embraced the challenges that require an embrace of all that the Admiral spoke about. Reminds me of T. Roosevelt’s comment: *Far better it is to dare mighty deeds to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure then to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much because they live in the great twilight of knowing [neither] victory or defeat.*

    I see this spirit in your taking a year to work on your business. There are safer paths to follow, but you’ve carved out the one that takes more risk for the sake of pursuing a worthy goal. Again, great post.



    1. Thanks, Dad. That quote from Roosevelt has been a favorite since my last year of college. Here’s hoping it’s a fruitful year, even if it ain’t easy. Love you!

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