3 Ways to Accept Change Like the Navy SEALs

Roll With the Punches Like a Champ

Change is a core part of life, but that often doesn't stop us from feeling angry or stressed when our lives suddenly flip the script without our approval.

Learning to accept what's happened and move through change is a critical skill for US Navy SEALs - and as a result, they've become experts at rolling with the punches.

Let’s break down three effective and practical ways you can learn to accept change, just like the US Navy SEALs.

“Adaptability is not imitation. It means power of resistance and assimilation.”

— Mahatma Gandhi

3. Recognize that Your Power is Limited

The Navy SEALs put their members under a lot of pressure. To help minimize the chances of someone buckling under that pressure, they teach new recruits that it’s foolish to worry about everything.

Instead, they teach their recruits to recognize that they have limited power and that they literally can’t change everything. To that end, it’s smarter to stop worrying or feeling anxious about things that they have no power over.

For instance, SEALs might have the ability to impact the outcome of an individual mission. But they can’t impact the decisions of the President thousands of miles away.

You can take this lesson and apply it to your own life. If things in your life are changing, it does you no good to fixate on those aspects if you can’t control them. There’s nothing you could have done, for example, to stop someone from rear-ending you at a stoplight if you were following traffic rules.

So don't worry about it and accept that the change has occurred, then take steps to react positively to it.

“You can’t make people listen to you. You can’t make them execute. That might be a temporary solution for a simple task. But to implement real change, to drive people to accomplish something truly complex or difficult or dangerous—you can’t make people do those things. You have to lead them.” — Jocko Willink

Tactical Christmas Stockings

★★★★★ (250+)

Santa Tested. Rambo Approved.

Great gifts for veterans, police officers, firefighters, outdoorsmen, preppers, active duty members, and overall badasses.


2. Focus Your Energy on What You Can Change

The other side of this coin is to focus all of your energy on things you actually can change.

Navy SEALs use this technique frequently. They apply all of their energy (and SEALs have a ton of physical and mental energy, as a rule) to the problems they can have a real effect on. The results are often phenomenal.

You can apply this lesson to your own life as well. For example, if you lose your job because of uncontrollable circumstances, you shouldn’t waste your time and energy lamenting your lost position.

You should instead pull yourself up by your bootstraps and put all of your energy into finding a new job, such as buffing up your resume and applying for interviews. This is a more positive way to react to change and it’ll probably help you overcome any road bumps in your life more quickly.

“I am no longer accepting the things I cannot change. I am changing the things I cannot accept.” — Angela Davis

MME™ Outdoor Mystery Box

★★★★★ (100+)

Ever felt adventurous enough to buy a product that is a complete mystery? Take a risk, it just may pay off. All of the boxes are randomly packed at our warehouse with 1-5 different items.


1. “Embrace the Suck”

Lastly, Navy SEALs are also taught to embrace pain whenever they feel it. This is necessary to some extent as SEALs will be exposed to a wide range of physical and emotional stressors that the average person doesn’t have to deal with.

In fact, they have their own catchphrase referencing this attitude, “Embrace the Suck”, which refers to the way they should consciously accept or appreciate something that is extremely unpleasant but unavoidable.

However, you can also embrace pain and use it to fuel your adjustments to change in your life. Rather than allowing discomfort or pain to debilitate you, you can instead harness that pain, grit your teeth, and charge forward to a solution.

The SEALs use this to pull one of their buddies out of a tough spot in a firefight or complete exhausting training drills. You too can use the “embrace the pain” technique to do anything, from starting a new business to getting a new job, to hitting the gym and recovering from a broken relationship.

“Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.” — George Bernard Shaw

All in all, the SEALs know that change is inevitable and they can only control some of it. Take a page out of the SEALs’ book and follow the tips above to accept change and make the most of it when it eventually affects your life.

Thanks for reading,  

Justin | Author

TrailBlazer™ Pro Smartwatch w/ Earbuds

★★★★★ (600+)

Featuring built-in earbuds, call functionality, voice control, and more.

All-New Program

Get yourself summer-ready with this full-body, no-equipment workout that builds muscle, strength, and endurance at home.

With this 12-week program, you’ll push beyond your limits with easy-to-learn yet intense running practices that burn calories and get you SHREDDED! 

Learn More

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published