Why We Get Resilience Wrong with Steve Magness

There are times when life requires us to have grit and to tough things out. But the hammer isn’t the only tool in our toolbox. Steve Magness, author of the book, Do Hard Things: Why We Get Resilience Wrong and the Surprising Science of Real Toughness, offers a new model for how we can respond to our struggles, stressors and discomforts. A performance scientist who coaches Olympic athletes, he challenges us to trade in our broken model of resilience, based on powering through at all cost, for one grounded in the latest science and psychology, and focused on accessing our awareness and discernment.

In this conversation we discuss:

  • Our fundamental misunderstanding of what toughness is;
  • How Steve redefines toughness;
  • How we can navigate our mind to navigate our challenges;
  • How toughness is directly related to our expectations;
  • How we can develop the ability to steady our minds to develop resilience;
  • Steve’s five steps of setting your mind on reality.

You can listen to our conversation wherever you stream podcasts (Apple, Spotify, iHeart Radio) or listen here:



Steve Magness is a world-renowned expert on performance, well-being, and sustainable success. His most recent work is Do Hard Things: Why We Get Resilience Wrong and the Surprising Science of Real Toughness. He is coauthor of the best selling Peak Performance and The Passion Paradox. In his coaching practice, Steve works with executives, entrepreneurs, and athletes on their performance and mental skills. He’s served as consultant on mental skills development for professional sports teams, including some of the top teams in professional sports. His writing has appeared in Outside, Runner’s World, Forbes, Sports Illustrated, Men’s Health, and a variety of other outlets. In addition, Steve’s expertise on elite sport and performance has been featured in The New Yorker, Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Guardian, Business Insider, and ESPN The Magazine. Steve received his undergraduate degree from the University of Houston and a graduate degree from George Mason University. He currently lives in Houston, Tx with his wife Hillary. Once upon a time, he ran a mile in 4:01 in high school, at the time the 6th fastest high school mile in US history. Learn more at stevemagness.com.



Kristen Manieri is certified as both a habits coach and a mindfulness teacher. Her book, Better Daily Mindfulness Habits: Simple Changes with Lifelong Impact, was released summer 2021. She specializes in: stress reduction, energy management, mindset, resilience, habit formation, rest rituals, and self-care. As the host of the weekly 60 Mindful Minutes podcast, an Apple top 100 social science podcast, Kristen has interviewed over 160 authors and thought leaders about what it means to live a more conscious, connected, intentional and joyful life. Learn more at kristenmanieri.com/work-with-me.

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