Embrace the Suck

The phrase “embrace the suck” is a term that originates from the American military and generally refers to the decision one makes to consciously accept a task or challenge that, while extremely unpleasant, is unavoidable. Of course, to many servicemen and women, the phrase denotes the harsh realities of war and the fact that they must face them head-on or face dire consequences. While most of us are lucky to live the lives that we do thanks to the sacrifices of these brave men and women, an “embrace the suck” mindset is still something that can be beneficial to adopt in life.

This mindset shift is something we discuss on the first episode of our podcast, aptly named Embrace the Suck and hosted by our very own founding partner Bill Hart. In the first episode, Bill discusses his experience in Navy SEAL training and the impact the words of an instructor named Randy have had on his life.

In his parting words to Bill’s newly graduating class, Randy likened the recent graduates to a bullet being loaded into a chamber, saying some might be high achievers, some may be fired off and end up way downrange, never to be thought of again, others may just hit a wall, and some will remain in the chamber and never be used for anything.

This message was delivered in the mid-nineties – before wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and before the recession when someone could just get a good job and afford a house easily. Despite everything seemingly on the up and up, the instructor still felt it was important to let Bill’s class of graduates know that they may never be ultimately satisfied with their career or life in general, so be prepared for it.

Considering the state of the world, this advice could not ring truer today. When you “embrace the suck,” you don’t just accept the fact that shitty things may happen in life – you prepare yourself for them. At APG, when we say “embrace the suck” we mean that there is always a good chance that things won’t go your way, and instead of being afraid of this happening, you should be prepared.

This mindset shift and attitude is especially important in the workplace, and your team should be prepared for harsh realities so you can quickly overcome them and get back to finding success in your field and with your team.

For more of our two cents worth of advice on the heavy-hitting perspective, head over to Soundcloud and check out our podcasts!

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Corporate Leadership Training