The Secrets Of Mental Toughness

The Secrets Of Mental Toughness

Mental toughness is all about how an individual can deal with stress and how that then impacts upon their performance. In the same situation two members of staff can deal with this is two very different ways – it is all down to the individual and how they manage themselves.

To be successful in management you MUST have reserves of resilience and an inner drive to succeed and to be prepared to put up with any number of uncomfortable situations.

Successful and resilient managers show the following traits:

  1. Performance – explains up to 25% of the variation in performance between individuals
  2. Behaviour – more engaged, more positive, more “can do”
  3. Wellbeing – more contentment, better stress management, less bullying
  4. Aspirations – more ambitious, prepared to manage more risk

To exhibit clear and effective delivery we need to focus upon the following four areas of behaviour:


Being in control of our work and the environment in which they work are key components of Control. By being in control we are capable of exerting more influence on our working environment and we are more confident about working in complex or multi-tasked situations. This means that we are able handle lots of things at the same time.

Key performance issues around Control are the degree to which we can master our emotions by keeping worry/concerns/anxiety in check and also in the ways in which we mask our true emotional state.


This is measured by our ability to complete tasks successfully despite any problems or obstacles that arise whilst achieving the goal. Commitment is all about being able to handle and achieve tasks and to meet deadlines often with tough, unyielding deadlines. Those who have little or no Commitment achieve their goals but only do so when free from such pressure.


Do you see problems or challenging situations as threats or opportunities? Mentally tough managers will often seek out challenge and change and will identify these as ways for self-development. Others will perceive problems as threats. Working in stable and well-controlled environments does not show significant mental toughness and favours a calm and measured cultures in the workplace.


Individuals who are high in confidence have the self-belief to successfully complete tasks, which may be considered too difficult by individuals with similar abilities but with lower confidence. Less confident individuals are also likely to be less persistent and to make more errors.

There are two subsections of Confidence:

Personal mental toughness is all about recognising what might be the causes of stress and pressure for us as individuals and becoming aware of these triggers and traps. Being aware of this leads to understanding and positive action in us becoming more mentally astute and tough, therefore improving our performance.

Good Luck!

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