Do Hard Things: Why We Get Resilience Wrong and The Surprising Science of Real Toughness
"In Do Hard Things, Steve Magness beautifully and persuasively reimagines our understanding of toughness. This is a must-read for parents and coaches and anyone else looking to prepare for life's biggest challenges."
-- Malcolm Gladwell, author of Outliers and Talking to Strangers and host of the Revisionist History podcast
From beloved performance expert and coauthor of Peak Performance Steve Magness comes a radical rethinking of how we perceive toughness and what it means to achieve our high ambitions in the face of hard things.
Toughness has long been held as the key to overcoming a challenge and achieving greatness, whether it is on the sports field, at a boardroom, or at the dining room table. Yet, the prevailing model has promoted a mentality based on fear, false bravado, and hiding any sign of weakness. In other words, the old model of toughness has failed us.
Steve Magness, a performance scientist who coaches Olympic athletes, rebuilds our broken model of resilience with one grounded in the latest science and psychology. In Do Hard Things, Magness teaches us how we can work with our body – how experiencing discomfort, leaning in, paying attention, and creating space to take thoughtful action can be the true indications of cultivating inner strength. He offers four core pillars to cultivate such resilience:
- Pillar 1- Ditch the Façade, Embrace Reality
- Pillar 2- Listen to Your Body
- Pillar 3- Respond, Instead of React
- Pillar 4- Transcend Discomfort
Smart and wise all at once, Magness flips the script on what it means to be resilient. Drawing from mindfulness, military case studies, sports psychology, neuroscience, psychology, and philosophy, he provides a roadmap for navigating life’s challenges and achieving high performance that makes us happier, more successful, and, ultimately, better people.
A few common principles drive performance, regardless of the field or the task at hand. Whether someone is trying to qualify for the Olympics, break ground in mathematical theory, or craft an artistic masterpiece, many of the practices that lead to great success are the same. In Peak Performance, Brad Stulberg, a coach, researcher, and writer who covers health and the science of human performance, and Steve Magness, a performance scientist and coach of Olympic athletes, team up to demystify these practices and make them accessible to everyone.
The first book of its kind, Peak Performance combines inspiring stories of top performers across a range of domains – from athletic to intellectual to artistic – with the latest science on the cognitive, neurochemical, and physiological factors that underlie mastery. The result is an entertaining read that links traditionally-siloed fields and relies upon cutting-edge science. In doing so, it uncovers unique and powerful insights that can help you take your game to the next level, whatever your game may be.
Nearly everything you think you know about drive and passion is wrong. Learn how to develop your passion and harness it in productive directions, and control your passion so it doesn't control you.
In this book you'll come to understand: How to cultivate passion in a way that is sustainable and healthy. The relationship between passion, addiction, and mental illness. The difference between harmonious passion (the best kind of passion) and obsessive passion (a destructive force), and how to nurture the former and avoid the latter. The mastery mindset, which ensures you stay passionate about your endeavor without becoming a slave to external results. Focusing on process over outcomes. The illusion of living a perfectly "balanced" life and why passion coupled with self-awareness trumps "balance" any day. Why moving on from a passion can be so hard and tips on how to do so with grace and grit. And so much more.
The Science of Running is written for those of us looking to maximize our performance, get as close to our limits as possible, and more than anything find out how good we can be, or how good our athletes can be. In The Science of Running, elite coach and exercise physiologist Steve Magness integrates the latest research with the training processes of the world’s best runners, to deliver an in depth look at how to maximize your performance. It is a unique book that conquers both the scientific and practical points of running in two different sections. The first is aimed at identifying what limits running performance from a scientific standpoint. You will take a tour through the inside of the body, learning what causes fatigue, how we produce energy to run, and how the brain functions to hold you back from super-human performance. In section two, we turn to the practical application of this information and focus on the process of training to achieve your goals. You will learn how to develop training plans and to look at training in a completely different way.