One day, one life.

I love this saying.

The notion is that every day is a lifetime of learning. It’s like the Buddha says, that you can find enlightenment in a single breath, if you’re aware, if you’re present.

If you’re present, then your day has a lifetime of lessons for you, everything is there for you.

The warrior knows that when he gets up in the morning he may not see sunset, because he’s committed to serve.

His job is to master himself in service– to serve, to protect in some capacity, or to stand his ground.

Not all warriors are carrying a weapon on a battlefield, but there is an “unknown” about each day.

It could be the death of one’s ego, it could be the death of one’s reputation or in the warrior’s case, the result could be an actual physical death because he is out there on the edge, in the arena.

Therefore, the warrior knows that when he wakes up, he must prepare himself to win the day.

I got this same notion from Sun Tzu and he has this really nice quote that says:

“The victorious warrior wins in his mind and then goes to the battle. The loser goes into battle hoping to win.”

The idea is anyone can look at his or her day as the battlefield like a warrior would because you never know when you’re going to have some sort of clash.

It could be some sort of stressor or a jerk at work or a real altercation – such as one a police officer might face on patrol.

In the morning we prepare for that by taking the time to really get clear about why we’re doing what we’re doing.

We see ourselves going through the day, understanding all the known inflection points, and visualize ourselves doing it well.

If it’s time with our family, we’re doing it well. We’re not distracted on our iPhones, we’re not blowing them off. We’re there for them.

It could be time with our peers and our teammates. It could be briefing for a mission, being on the mission, whatever it may be- we focus on seeing ourselves doing it really well.

This prepares the body-mind system for what’s coming.

That’s what I mean by winning in your mind.

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Founder, Pres & CEO at Unbeatable Mind, SEALFIT and US Tactical |

Mark Divine is an expert in human performance as it is displayed in mental toughness, leadership and physical readiness. His work is based on an integral warrior-leader model that he developed and tested on over a thousand special operations candidates worldwide.