Admiral William McRaven, author of “Make Your Bed: Little Things That Can Change Your Life… And Maybe The World,” explains what he learned about his ego while training to become a Navy SEAL. He went on to serve as a SEAL for nearly 4 decades. Following is a transcript of the video.
I don’t think of myself as having a big ego. Others may differ.
But I don’t think I have a big ego — but inside sometimes, again, you internalize your pride a little bit more than you do externally. So there are some people that have a big ego externally, and then there are some people, I think, that internalize their pride.
But one of the things that you learn very quickly when you go through SEAL training is you’re rarely the fastest, the strongest, or the smartest. So much like coming to a college football team or a pro football team, you see these great young high school players and they come to a college football team, and they were the best in their high school, and they get to a great college program and they’re not the fastest, they’re not the best.
And so SEAL training humbles you. It makes you realise, one, that you have to rely on other people and you have to rely on them for everything you do. We talk about this little thing we call the inflatable boat small, our little rubber raft. And you realise very quickly you’re not going to get anywhere unless you function as a team.
And in the team — it is about the team. It can’t be about you. It can never be about you. So SEAL training really helps bring you back down to earth. One, because the people that you’re around are all phenomenal, and then the instructors make sure you recognise if you don’t function as a team, the SEAL team will never be successful.
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.