You are not alone.
It’s an uncommon mantra in this warrior space.
We want to be strong enough to go forward alone, we want to dispel reliance and vulnerability. Warriors of this creed admire the solitary wolf, favor the lonely and hard path up the mountain.
And how couldn’t we?
The physical obstacles in life are often personal tests: mountains, rivers, walls, barbells, squat racks—we eagerly navigate and overcome these to move toward the compelling, exciting future. These obstacles, some metaphorical and others tangible, are necessary, embraced impediments because they create small victories leading to the goals we’ve set.
And most of us see them that way.
Most of us know the squat racks, walls, and mountains are places for progress and achievement, for sweating and hammering and climbing, molding our minds and bodies for the many challenges ahead.
Those many challenges we expect to encounter—alone.
But these aren’t the only obstacles we must contend with.
There are others, much harder to see but perhaps more real, more intrusive.
They’re the obstacles of self: regret, fear, doubt, anxiety, trauma, hopelessness.
I say these are perhaps more real than those rivers and barbells, those metaphorical and tangible obstacles, because we don’t choose them. We choose mountains, rivers, walls, barbells, and squat racks, but we don’t choose self-doubt, regret, fear, anxiety, trauma, and hopelessness.
We don’t wake up choosing the internal battle with past, future, and present, the battle manifested as frightening negative dialogue with ourselves. Nobody walks out the door each morning hoping to meet anxiety and regret, trauma and fear.
But you can feel their weight, hear their words.
And when you encounter them, when your lonely and hard path warps into a maze of doubt and insecurity, shit can go wrong.
Rain and wind. Blinding fog.
It’s not where you wanted to end up. You didn’t choose this.
You didn’t choose to be stuck on the side of a mountain, unable to progress or retreat.
Nobody can opt out of mental turbulence.
The storm doesn’t discriminate. It doesn’t matter if you’re a leader, what color your skin is, or how much money you have.
It’s not something you can always be ready for.
But you are not alone.
And not just because many of us have been there. You are not alone because even those who have never been there will bear your fucking doubt, regret, fear, anxiety, trauma, and hopelessness.
It’s what we signed up for.
It’s what we signed up for when we joined this sacred warrior community, took this oath. It’s a pledge to uphold the meritocracy of effort, of discomfort, of challenge. To uphold it for ourselves, and for those we meet on the way.
It’s the noble oath of our brothers and sisters that none are left to navigate their own maze. To put our hands on their shoulders when the rain and wind rage, when they can’t see through the fog.
For the internal, mental battles you did not choose, for the demons running their black nails through your mind, we want to lift you up, join your mission, and help you see it through.
You are not alone.
When the emotions and anxieties of your past, this present, and an uncertain future bang their war drums, when the dangers of mental fatigue and confusion loom, my oath is this:
“I will Never Fucking Quit. Not for my body or my ambitions. Let those die if they must. For the responsibility I have to turn my past into a proud present, and to let someone else see their future in the one I am building. I am not alone; you are not alone. Without the contribution of many, my grand adventure of life suffers. We are all in this together. You are not alone. Never Fucking Quit.”