Cade's Corner: Will You Be Stronger When The Dust Settles?

It's a simple fact: we are living during a pandemic and times are tough. We have lost loved ones and jobs, dreams have been crushed, and unrest in some areas is prevailing.

In times like these a simple decision has to be made on a personal level: "Will I give in and give up?" -or- "Will I survive and THRIVE?"

In all of the incredible survival situations I have studied there is one recurring theme – never quit! This should be everyone's mantra.

And not only should you never quit – promise yourself you'll be even stronger when the "dust settles."

Stronger When The Dust Settles

Physically: I'll admit that when we first were under lockdown I let things slip a bit on the physical fitness side. (Wrong Cade!)

During a time like this it is more important than ever to stay in peak physical condition. Sure, most gyms are closed. But there are so many things you can do without a gym.

For me, I hung TRX straps from my tree in the backyard, which offered a dozen exercise options. I made myself do 1000 air squats and 500 push-ups every day in my house (no backyard needed).

This was also a great time to go back to my roots in the SEAL teams, and I started doing distance swims at the local reservoir. This led me to participate in the 2nd Annual Navy SEAL Swim across the Hudson River in NYC. It was an incredible experience that I probably wouldn't have done if not for COVID-19.

What I'm trying to say is with a positive attitude we can all find incredible opportunities when challenged. Never quit!

Physical challenge & checklist:

  1. Push your comfort zone by performing some form of physical exercise every day.
  2. Give yourself mandatory minimums you must accomplish every day (500 push-ups).
  3. Identify an event you want to participate in – sign up – and start training. If it's on your schedule it will push you to do it.

Mentally: The mind and the body work as one, and if you're performing the above physically, you're already improving things mentally.

But explicitly exercising the brain is just as important as exercising the body. Learn how to do something you don't know how to do.

For example I was having some issues with water quality at my cabin so I did my research and got a rather advanced water filtration system. I could have picked up the phone and given a plumber a fortune to install – but instead this became MY challenge.

After hours on YouTube and a few phone calls to tech support, I was able to successfully replumb and install my new water filtration system. I'd never done anything like this before and had no technical training. I just decided this was my new mission and I would successfully complete it.

I now have a good understanding of plumbing, combined with the pride of success by committing to something and using all I could mentally to accomplish this goal. Everyone can do this.

Mental checklist:

  1. Commit to learning something new every day no matter how small.
  2. Pick a project that you aren't sure you can accomplish and fully commit to completion.
  3. Don't quit!

Folks, it really comes down to you and how you handle the challenges life throws at you. The end of this pandemic will NOT be the end of life's challenges.

Start now – get up, get out, get going!

Be a survivor... not a statistic,

Cade Courtley
Former Navy SEAL / 4Patriots Contributor



  • Janet Mathies - August 25, 2020

    Cade, I just finished your article – NEVER QUIT! Thank you so much. I really appreciated it and my mind really started thinking about things that I can and need to do. We are seniors and are a bit challenged during this time of Covid, but we still have many choices that will be very beneficial not only to us but to our family as well. THANK YOU and may you experience many blessings as we move through this season with great success.

  • Jo Ann Crossno - August 18, 2020

    I have a sign on my refrigerator that says never never give up I have a sign on my bathroom door every morning I read it says don’t forget to pray today because God didn’t forget to wake you up this morning

  • Kay - August 18, 2020

    Cade, I was laughing at the “letting things slip on the physical fitness side”, I’ve done that all my life but I know people who have always been in good shape that have slacked off a bit, too.
    I’ve also heard from people who have started new hobbies, and found new things to do. There are garments I like but mostly now they’re not made the way I like them. It’s a fairly simple fix but I’ve never owned a sewing machine or had a clue how to use one. I found an inexpensive one and now I’m sewing. I guess you can teach an old disabled dog new tricks!

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