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We’re often told that to be “tough,” we have to push through our pain, show no signs of distress, and simply persevere.

But Steve Magness’ newest book, Do Hard Things, challenges that definition and outlines a much more beautiful and useful way to understand what it truly means to “be tough.”

And since such a huge aspect of finding joy in our journey is to learn how to embrace the less pleasant moments in our lives, I’m thrilled to have Steve on the podcast to help families dealing with challenging circumstances and slowly build their resilience.

Steve Magness is a world-renowned expert on performance and an acclaimed writer. He has served as an executive coach in various sectors and has been a consultant for professional sports teams, including some of the top teams in the NBA. His writings can be found in publications such as Sports Illustrated and Men’s Health. He has shared his expertise on performance in features in the New Yorker, Wall Street Journal, Business Insider, ESPN The Magazine, and many more.

In our conversation, Steve talks about what toughness really is, but also what it isn’t. He outlines his Four Pillars of Toughness and shares beautiful nuggets of information you can apply to your life today to make navigating life’s ups and downs a little easier. You’ll also learn how to feel in control in the face of challenges, the power of routines, listening to your body, responding instead of reacting, transcending into discomfort, and so much more.

Key Takeaways with Steve Magness

  • What being “tough” truly means and how we can become more resilient.
  • Steve’s advice for families dealing with hard circumstances.
  • The Four Pillars of Toughness:
    • Ditching the facade and embracing reality,
    • Listening to your body and emotions,
    • Responding instead of reacting, and
    • Transcending to your discomfort.
  • How to discover what feelings you are experiencing with a Visual Guide To Human Emotions.
  • Learn more about Post Traumatic Growth.
  • Facing life with an “Explorer Mindset” and embracing the journey because you never know where it will take you.

Steve Magness Tweetables

  • “Toughness to me means to experience some sort of discomfort or stress, lean in, pay attention, and then create the space to take thoughtful action.” – Steve Magness
  • “When we don’t have control, we lose the capacity to cope. It is when we have a choice that toughness is trained.” – Steve Magness
  • “If you practice being bored, you’re training your mind’s mental muscle where it learns that you don’t have to react to everything, you don’t have to reach out and ‘grab the shiny object’.” – Steve Magness


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