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Embrace the suck: how to change your life when everything sucks

At one point in your life, your life will suck. It's life. However, being stuck in this situation is a choice. To get out of this, you need to embrace the suck.

Life can get difficult, and sometimes, it sucks. We've all been there. Perhaps this suck comes from upskilling, finding a new job, or just getting through difficult life situations.

Whatever it may be, it happens to all of us. And what's the best way to overcome these problems? By embracing the suck.

The term itself, "embracing the suck," has grown in recent years. It's a military phrase that has grown in popularity with influencers such as David Goggins.

It's all about finding love in discomfort. Instead of avoiding “the suck”, you embrace it and make it something you can handle and overcome.

At MentorCruise, we have mentors that can help with embracing the suck. They're able to change your mindset, making it a mind that loves the discomfort in difficult situations.

In this article, you’ll learn about:

  • What the military slang “embrace the suck” means
  • Why you should embrace the suck in your professional life
  • How to get over the suck and become accepting of being uncomfortable.

Embrace the Suck Meaning

“Embrace the suck” means that while the current situation may be less than ideal, you have to accept it and work toward improving it. To embrace the suck means to confront things that make you uncomfortable so that you can overcome them.

The slang is a military phrase. The phrase was first "embraced" during the 2003 War in Iraq. It served as a mechanism to fortify the military and acted as a way to "cope" with the difficult situations they were facing.

Why You Should Embrace the Suck in Your Professional Life

Everyone becomes unhappy about their career at some point in their lives.

In The Hard Thing About Hard Things by venture capitalist and tech entrepreneur Ben Horowitz, he recounts an experience that nearly prevented him from selling his company, Opsware, for millions of dollars.

When he told Dave Conte, his CFO, about various options, Dave replied, “If you are going to eat shit, don’t nibble.” Dave suggested that Ben made a risky decision that ended up being successful.

While the stakes may not be as high as selling a multimillion-dollar company, you still need to embrace the suck if you’re facing the following situations:

  • You search on Google: “My job sucks.”
  • You don’t feel fulfilled in what you do any longer.
  • You don’t feel passionate about growing your company any longer.
  • Just thinking about your work causes you anxiety.
  • You want to switch careers.
  • You need a vacation — permanently.

Embracing the suck also allows you to confront the situation now so that it doesn’t seep into other parts of your life.

Master your fear

Overcoming fear is a way to overcome the suck of life, so you need to master your fear.

Life can and does suck at times; fear and indecisiveness affect everyone, including you, and including anyone; it is the fear, in the words of the author Frank Herbert that is “the mind-killer.”

Alongside this, Tony Robinson, in his book Unshakeable, talks about "how fear cripples our decision-making" regarding understanding the stock market and unleashing our potential.

It doesn't stop there, either. Entrepreneurs worldwide, such as Patrick Bet-David (Networth £160 million), argue the only way to become successful is by embracing the suck.

How to Get Over the Suck in your Professional Life

At first, nobody likes embracing the suck. Because, well, it sucks. It's normal. However, you need to overcome this. You're able to do this by doing the following:

Get Help Through Mentorship

Sometimes, external advice is what you need to help you get out of your rut and achieve your goals.

At MentorCruise, we’ve seen how mentorship has transformed the lives of many professionals, ranging from career changers to founders who are unsure of how to grow their startups.

To embrace the suck, you need a plan to get where you want to be. A good mentor with the right qualities for you can look at your problems and offer concrete steps to fix them.

Change Your Own Situation

Embracing the suck is a process of realization and action. You first must realize your situation sucks, then perform an action to get you out of the suck situation.

For example:

  • If you don’t like your job, then look around for other opportunities.
  • If you have not-so-ideal circumstances, quit your job.
  • If you’re not in the right place to change your situation, start to put your mind at ease.

Also, look around. Who are your friends? Dan Pina pictures this perfectly, mentioning, "You can only be as successful as your most successful friend.”. Your circle could be causing the "suck", and finding a new one could be the best option.

Get Comfortable Being Uncomfortable

You will also need to embrace the suck during different points of your life.

The only way to pursue happiness and satisfaction is to realize that there will be obstacles when it comes to pursuing your passion. It doesn't come easy; that's why it's hard.

When trying to get comfortable with being uncomfortable, remember to:

  • Remember your vision. Whether you’re an intern or a founder, there will be times when you’ll be doubting yourself whether you’re making the right choices or not. During these times, you need to remember your reason for pursuing whatever goals you have.
  • Have a support group. Having a community like MentorCruise will help you get through tough times through guidance and encouragement.
  • Think about the worst-case scenario. What’s the worst thing that can go wrong if you decide to pursue something? If you understand the consequences of your possible actions, then you can have a clearer perspective on what to do next.

Master and Apprentice

If you have seen Star Wars and understand who the Sith are, this analogy will make perfect sense; like Darth Vader and Darth Sidious, the apprentice must always overcome their master.

Simply put, it is necessary to know that there is always a time to move out of the apprentice stage.

Our teachers or mentors may not necessarily have our interests at heart due to their interests and reluctance to let the apprentices go their own way.

You need to understand when it's time to let go and become something for yourself.

Learn New Skills If You Don’t Know What You Want

Let's be honest; not everybody has a plan. Life plans, especially, are pretty difficult to create.

However, it's normal. But that doesn't mean you shouldn't be learning new skills. As we know, knowledge is power. It doesn't just make you smarter, but it gives you fresh perspectives on life.

Therefore, learn new skills. It could be something to do with arts and crafts, fitness, or perhaps something like scuba diving. Whatever it may be, each skill will teach you something that you never knew before.

This doesn't only help with building fresh perspectives, either. It puts your mind at ease. If you're progressing in life, it makes you feel satisfied.

Develop Habits to Encourage Change

Change is the only thing that’s constant. When you’re in a sucky situation, learn to operate within a mindset of execution.

One of the ways to change your life and embrace the suck is through habit formation. If a personal habit makes you unhappy or negatively affects your professional life, work toward developing a habit that will counteract this.

There is a lot of literature on habit formation, including James Clear’s popular Atomic Habits or Charles Duhigg’s The Power of Habit. The fundamentals remain the same:

  • Start simple
  • Commit to 3-4 weeks of performing that habit until it becomes second nature to you.
  • Make sure that committing to the habit is as frictionless as possible.

These steps, though simple, can change your life, especially if they address habits that negatively impact it.

Finding The Right Mentor to Embrace the Suck

Without question, mentorship is the #1 way to overcome the suck. However, there are right and wrong ways to approach this.

Finding a mentor is a very personal experience. First, you must define your goals, time, and abilities to determine what you want to do and succeed in.

For example, imagine you're 25 years old and want to become the boxing heavyweight champion. This may sound possible. However, if you're five feet one with tiny hands, the odds aren't rooted in your corner.

By understanding your strengths, weaknesses, and time, you can apply your time and your current skill set to acquiring new skills.

If you have an idea of the type of mentor you want, then we recommend you search for a mentor on MentorCruise. It's full of great mentors who are ready to change your mind, world, and career trajectory.

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