General Mattis's Advice for Overcoming Brain Fog And Decision Fatigue
This is Real Advice From A Proven Leader
Welcome to the official newsletter of “The Transition,” brought to you by me, "IRON" Mike Steadman, A Marine Corps Veteran, Social Entrepreneur, and Member of The Bunker Labs Branding Team.
Last week, I spoke with General James Mattis, the former Secretary of Defense and Marine Corps General, along with my fellow veteran cohort members in the Veteran Fellowship Program at The Hoover Institution, Stanford University
Rather than simply asking questions, General Mattis instructed us to frame our questions around a problem statement, below is mine:
Problem: Sir, I find myself suffering from brain fog and decision fatigue. When I'm on, I feel like I can conquer the world. When I'm off, even the simplest of tasks feel overwhelming, such as responding to emails. What advice do you have for overcoming brain fog and decision fatigue, in addition, I'd love to learn about examples in your own life.
General Mattis's responded by encouraging us to spend time focusing on the mind, body, and spirit, every single day. He went into more detail, which I attempt to capture in my notes below.
1) When he's experiencing brain fog, he steps away and knocks out a set of push-ups. He also does them every morning when he gets out of bed. Daily exercise is a must.
2) Regarding decision fatigue, he encouraged us to get crystal clear when conveying our commander’s intent and what winning looks like. Once we do, we empower our team to focus on the execution without micromanaging. The goal is to be able to deliver a clear commander’s intent in ten minutes every single day, then free yourself up to focus on the most important tasks.
3) Read every day. The General carries Marcus Aurelius with him everywhere he goes, to remind himself we're only facing what others have met.
4) Find some spiritual grounding, and tap into a higher power, regardless of your religious preference.
5)Lastly, even when you feel like you're going through it, he encouraged us to put others first. This includes your team and peers. The world rewards putting positive energy into the universe.
Summing up The General's response, I believe it comes down to "Brilliant in the Basics."Focus on the basics of self-care and daily discipline, allowing that to put you in the best possible position to win every day.
This isn't hustle porn, this is real advice from someone who operated at the highest level of our military and national government.
Now that we have it, the next step is to my implement it. Here's what I'm doing.
1) I rejoined my old CrossFit gym earlier this week. I was feeling stagnant and needed to change things up.
2) I'm dedicated to reading for 10 minutes a day.
3) Meditate every single day, even if it's only 5 minutes.
4) Spend more time being intentional about my commander’s intent.
5) Continue to give back to my local community and make time to help other veteran entrepreneurs and military spouses.
I shared the same notes in a Linkedin post that went viral, letting me know how many in our community appreciate the General’s advice. So for this week, I’m sending two emails, one with the Generals Advice, and tomorrow’s I’ll share another episode of the Transition.
As entrepreneurs, brain fog and decision fatigue are real. They can keep us from operating at our highest level, so if you’re going through it or know someone else who is please share the General’s advice.
We want to hear from you!
My goal is to make the Transition the #1 resource for military-connected entrepreneurs. I can’t do it alone. In order to make the best show possible, we’d love to hear your feedback on topics you’d like us to cover. Feel free to shoot me an email at Mike.Steadman@BunkerLabs.org or by messaging me on Linkedin or Instagram at “IRON” Mike Steadman.
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The Transition is brought to you by Metlife Foundation, and their commitment the supporting veteran and military-spouse entrepreneurs. In addition, Metlife Foundation also provides mentorship and financial health resources to veterans and military spouses transition into the workforce.
***P.S. I’m a Marine Grunt, so I apologize for any grammar errors in advance, but know I’m working on improving my writing."
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