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‘Aim Bigger and Push Harder’: How Bear Grylls Goes After A Goal

Bear Grylls has made many river crossings on his survival expeditions and TV shows, and he knows that crossing fast-flowing rivers always needs extreme caution.

As we know from How Bear Grylls crosses a river, it doesn’t matter how close the other river bank may seem – it’s never as easy as just getting into the water and climbing out on the other side. Rivers have many unknown dangers, often lurking beneath the surface of the water.

“I have had more close calls crossing rivers than any other obstacle in the wild,” says Bear Grylls in his book Mind Fuel. “There is always more going on under the surface than you can predict and the flow is always stronger than you might imagine.”

Looking across the river bank

In Mind Fuel, Bear writes that change can be a bit like that too. We might be looking ‘across the bank’ to where we want to be in life. Our goal may seem to be very close and achievable but there is often a major current driving against us. 

“This resistance to change is known as ‘inertia’ – and it is an all-too-common human trait to resist anything that might upset the status quo,” says Bear. “Inertia always works to keep things the same, however much your heart longs for change.”

Keeping with the river analogy, Bear says that in order to ‘fight the current’ and achieve change, we have to commit upfront.

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Image by AscentXmedia

Recognize resistance

The way to overcome this is to anticipate that there will be some resistance, recognize it and embrace it – and use it as a reminder that you are on the right track. 

What is helpful is to aim further upstream than where you want to go – to compensate for being pushed back from your goal. “Aim bigger and push harder than we think necessary,” says Bear.

This extra energy and extra push might be just what is needed to achieve the mission

where others might not.

In order to reach that point across the river, you need to manage the various forces that stand in your way, whether it is a lack of confidence, an emotional connection to the

present or a fear of failure. 

“If we don’t anticipate it, the force of the current can easily wash us back onto the bank we were hoping to leave, feeling exhausted and disappointed,” says Bear.

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