Tougher Than The Rest

Tougher Than The Rest - 640 x 384

Mental and emotional “toughness” is a generally favorably perceived character trait, particularly where one’s actions in response to a challenge or in the face of adversity, exemplify strength and resiliency, such that one’s spirit is not broken, even in the most dire of circumstances.  Those consistently perceived by others as being “tough” are individuals in all walks of life who “refuse to lose” and are unwilling to give up on anything they have set their mind to, and they do NOT shy away from undertakings because they are difficult — instead they stand out as leaders because they tend to gravitate TOWARD them.

Toughness is a term widely used in sports circles, most especially football, which the author of this blog remembers well from his grade school, high school and collegiate playing days.  Moreover an entire book has been written on the subject by former Duke University Basketball player and current ESPN Basketball Analyst and Sportscaster, Jay Bilas.

Toughness - Jay Bilas - 640 x 221

Some of the more poignant quotes from this book are:

  • “Failing doesn’t make you a failure. Failing makes you a competitor . . . Failure is a part of competing, and embracing that fact is an important component of toughness. Tough people fail, but tough people are not failures. The only failures are those who give up, or give in.”
  • “I did not want to be common; I wanted to be uncommon. I did not want to do what was easy; I wanted to do what was hard, and do it consistently.”
  • And to assimilate and paraphrase some related quotes: “Toughness is about concentrating on your objectives with a laser focus, employing unwavering discipline through fastidious preparation and understanding your role and its impact toward achieving the ultimate goal.”

But toughness is a relative term that is certainly difficult, if not impossible to measure. And it’s inherent relativity only becomes clear in competitive situations — where the more evenly matched opponents (in sports, business or other arenas) “raise the toughness bar“.  And those who persevere most are the ones who clear that metaphorical bar at the highest level — thus proving to be “tougher than the rest“.

Clearing the Bar - 640 x 255

Tougher Than The Rest” is also the name of a song written and performed by Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band, including his wife Patty.   Granted that this is yet another “long song”, where the vulnerability necessary to fall in love is likened to being “rough enough for love” and the willingness to yield to this is supported by being “tougher than the rest”.

In the below live performance, the love conveyed by “The Boss” and Patty Scialfa (his  girlfriend at the time) to each other on stage is palpable, and the inclusion of cameos by everyday couples in love makes this particular music video all the more powerful and touching.

Tougher Than The Rest

Well it’s Saturday night
You’re all dressed up in blue
I been watching you awhile
Maybe you been watching me too
So somebody ran out
Left somebody’s heart in a mess
Well if you’re looking for love
Honey I’m tougher than the rest

Some girls they want a handsome Dan
Or some good-lookin’ Joe, on their arm
Some girls like a sweet-talkin’ Romeo
Well ’round here baby
I learned you get what you can get
So if you’re rough enough for love
Honey I’m tougher than the rest

The road is dark
And it’s a thin thin line
But I want you to know I’ll walk it for you any time
Maybe your other boyfriends
Couldn’t pass the test
Well if you’re rough and ready for love
Honey I’m tougher than the rest

Well it ain’t no secret
I’ve been around a time or two
Well I don’t know baby maybe you’ve been around too
Well there’s another dance
All you gotta do is say yes
And if you’re rough and ready for love
Honey I’m tougher than the rest
If you’re rough enough for love
Baby I’m tougher than the rest

About Spencer C. Young

Supports the Quest for Self-Actualization
This entry was posted in Being a Leader, Loving Others, Never Giving Up, Staying Focused and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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