Fall Seven Times, Stand Up Eight: Mental Toughness for Everyone


Edition: 2

Copyright: 2022

Pages: 248


Details: Print Product |

Mental toughness (MT) is a scientifically validated, well-researched concept that builds upon constructs such as resilience, grit, mindset, risk assessment, and other areas of interest to a wide range of professionals. It has its roots in sports performance, but has a wide range of applications in numerous fields. 

MT is the ability to recognize our perception of life’s challenges and how we approach (or avoid) difficult situations. MT has a great deal of evidence to support its use in education, psychology, social work, medicine, business, and coaching, among other areas.  

Fall Seven Times, Stand Up Eight is a highly readable, user-friendly book that draws on robust evidence and incorporates lessons from history, sociology, psychology, pop culture, and personal and clinical examples.  Readers will learn about what MT is, how it can be assessed, and how it can be applied to their professional and personal lives.  Specific strategies for enhancing performance using MT are included!


Preface and Acknowledgements

About the Author


What I Hate About Mental Toughness

Defining Mental Toughness

I’m Neither a Navy SEAL nor an Elite Athlete

My Journey with Mental Toughness

Why Mental Toughness?


Mental Toughness and the Normal Curve

Just Do It and Other Bad Advice

What Lies Ahead

CHAPTER 1 Mental Toughness, Mental Sensitivity, and Mental Flexibility

Mental Toughness: The 4C Model

The Evolution of Mental Toughness

Contemporary Psychology Theory and Mental Toughness

Mental Toughness and Resilience

Mental Toughness and Hardiness

Mental Toughness and Psychobiology

Self-Assessment of Mental Toughness

Developing Mental Toughness: When Being Special Doesn’t Feel Special

The Formation of Mental Toughness—Suffering Not Required

Mental Toughness as a Trait, Not a State

Mental Toughness and “Coping” vs. “Working Through”

The Power of the Situation and Mental Toughness

Toughness, Sensitivity, & Flexibility

Mental Sensitivity

Mental Flexibility

Summary and What Lies Ahead


An Exemplar of Mental Toughness

The 4Cs of Mental Toughness: Control, Commitment, Confidence, and Challenge

Mental Toughness and You

CHAPTER 3 Control

Control and Self-Efficacy

The Language of Control

Do We Really Have Control?

Life Control

Learned Helplessness, Negative Cognitive Triad, and Right-Sizing a Gym

Life Control and Mindset

Life Control and the Locus of Control

Emotional Control 85 What Is Emotional Control?

Emotional Control as Camouflage

Emotional Control and Jedi Mind Tricks

Emotional Control: An Essential Component of Success

Emotional Control and the Human Condition

Emotional Control and Collective Conflict

Emotional Control and Social Media

Emotional Control and Language

Wrapping Up

CHAPTER 4 Commitment

Plans Gang Aft Agley

Identity Status and Development

The “C” Word

Goal Orientation


Goals and Telephone Poles

Achievement Orientation

The Darkness and the Light of the Achievement Orientation

The No-Win Situation

Knowing When to Stop

Arrival Fallacy

Wrapping Up

CHAPTER 5 Challenge

Problems v. Opportunities

Challenge and Learning to be Helpless (and Hopeful!)

Risk Orientation

Go West—But Maybe Plan a Bit Too!

Learning to Push Boundaries: Ice Caking and Other Misadventures

Risk in Relationships: Moving Beyond Basic Strategies

What Does Your Headvoice Say? How a Noncommittal Grunt Can Start a Fight?

Learning Orientation

The Short Path: Heuristics in Learning

Being Open to Learning

Learning Through Observation and Experience: The Peanut Butter Sandwich of Frustration

Napster and Moral Risk-Taking

Learning Orientation and Identity

Relational Learning

When Being “Gifted” Isn’t: Learning Orientation and Self-Awareness

Competition and the Learning Orientation

Wrapping Up

CHAPTER 6 Confidence

Confidence in Balance

Confidence in Abilities

Confidence in Abilities and the Self-Fulfilling Prophecy

Confidence in Abilities and Social Success

“No Really, I’ve Got This”

Confidence in Abilities: Challenges

Confidence in Abilities: Balance

Interpersonal Confidence

Interpersonal Confidence and Empathy

Interpersonal Confidence and Persuasive Communication

Interpersonal Confidence and Social Engagement

Interpersonal Confidence at School and Work

Wrapping Up

CHAPTER 7 Making Mental Toughness Work

Back to Basics

Basics of Developing Mental Toughness

Coaching, Teaching, Managing, and Leading: Variations on a Theme

Mental Toughness at School

Mental Toughness at Work

Mental Toughness in Leadership

Developing Mental Toughness: A Counseling Approach

Process for Developing Mental Toughness

Wrapping Up




Dr. Brent Macdonald is a registered psychologist and educator who has worked with individuals with complex learning needs for over 25 years. He maintains an active psychological services practice with a focus on counselling and assessment. He is also a sessional instructor, adjunct associate professor, and sought-after public speaker who has appeared on CBC TV and Radio, CTV, Global Television, and CITY TV, among other media platforms. Additionally, Brent has also presented and been an invited keynote speaker at local, national, and international conferences. Brent has served as a leader in public education and advocacy with the Psychologist’s Association of Alberta, the Canadian Psychological Association, and the American Psychological Association, among others.

Brent has worked extensively with children, adolescents, young adults, their parents, educators, administrators, coaches, athletes, and executives in a wide range of contexts including public, private, and charter schools, universities and other post-secondary institutions, along with corporate teams, and community parent groups. He is a passionate believer in human psychological wellness and the need for public awareness to enhance communities and reduce stigma associated with psychological challenges. 

Related ISBN's: 9781792495281, 9781792496585




ISBN 9781792495281

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