Note: I haven't forgotten about the blog. I have been focused on writing multiple books that will be released this year. I wanted to share this excerpt from Chapter 9 of (working title) "The Warrior's Call". Stay tuned ladies and gentlemen, more coming soon. Pre-orders are now available on the website. Shipping in March.
PNR- point of no return. “Burn The Ships”. The PNR is simply defined as the point at which turning back is prohibitive, dangerous, potentially fatal. If you take off down the runway in an aircraft, you have to know the PNR before you start. At what point do I have to decide to fly or pump on the brakes?
In the 1500s, during the Spanish Conquest of Mexico, Hernan Cortes, the commander, destroyed their entire ship fleet upon arrival, telling his men simply “conquer or die.” Effectively forcing them all past the PNR.
Before you set out on any course you MUST know your PNR, and it is usually much sooner than you think. You don’t go down the runway at 100+mph in an aircraft to “see” if you want to fly or not. You are way past the DP, decision point. Subsequently, you don’t go to BUD’s to “see” if you want to be a SEAL. I remember hearing guys who quit say “I just don’t want to do this anymore.” That line always left me shocked. For real? You are just now figuring that out?
Once you pass a certain point at a certain speed in an aircraft its fly or die. And you have a much much higher chance of “die” if you don’t know where that decision point is before takeoff. Why is that?
Well if we proceed past the DP and we know we have passed it, it removes all hesitation, and it forces you to press on the throttle. It changes from I DON’T WANT to quit, to I CAN’T quit.
When you don’t know your DP’s you have unknowingly predefined a point of failure based on feelings. This is big, please get this. Your DP’s are a DECISION, and once you’ve made a decision you’ve removed feelings. If you don’t define your DECISION point, you have left feelings on the table. “Feelings” are great, when you are safe at altitude, but there is no room for feelings on the runway. It’s not fly or maybe, its fly or die! If this harshness of reality is too much for you, if you think this is an overly extreme way of looking at things, you probably have quit or will quit on a lot of things. Those BUD’s students who said “ I don’t want to do this anymore” died, in the aircraft takeoff sense, because they didn’t know they way were way past the DP once they were already in BUD/s. The DP for becoming a SEAL is before you join the Navy. You better KNOW at that point.
Ok, so what does this have to do with THIS CHAPTER? I’m telling you how I learned to fly, which is the title of this chapter. You have to burn your ships. When you burn the ships, you forcibly create a PNR. I knew I had to bring this mentality into BUD/s. Before I left for the Navy I told HUNDREDS of people both directly, and indirectly, that I was going to become a Navy SEAL. I didn’t say I was going to try. I was doing everything I could do to back myself into a corner where the only way out was through. I know for a fact that if something had happened that I got washed out of training, I would have been back. For me, I would have rather died than have to go back and tell all those people I quit or failed. It was “conquer or die”.
“Dare greatly” as Theodore Roosevelt said and nothing great is accomplished timidly. If you want to fly, you can’t be afraid to die. Will you be “The Man In The Arena” or the timid soul in the stands, watching?