staring down the wolf leadership

Staring Down the Wolf with ex-Navy SEAL Mark Divine

Each day, we have a choice to do things the way we’ve always done them, or to stare down the wolf of fear until he backs off.

Even if we’re not a former Navy SEAL Commander like today’s guest, as fathers, we are the heads of our families. We need to learn how to operate like an elite leader for them, and more importantly, ourselves.

This means we need to be strong enough to face our insecurities, confront our shadows, admit where we’re wrong, adopt a learning mindset, and be willing to ask help.

We are truly honored to have ex-Navy SEAL, Mark Divine, on the show for his fourth time. Among his many accomplishments, he is the creator of SEALFIT and the author of Unbeatable Mind. His new book is Staring Down the Wolf: 7 Leadership Commitments That Forge Elite Teams.

Today Mark talks about how becoming an elite leader starts with a deep understanding of who we are and why we behave the way we do. He reveals that elite leadership is not about pretending we’re perfect and indestructible. It’s about being honest about our weaknesses and failures.

Mark also teaches us how to get a team to commit to one cause and align communication on an intuitive level so that we can better our lives as well as generate a positive change in the world.

Mark Divine

Mark Divine is an expert in elite performance, mental toughness, and leader-team development. His renowned SEALFIT and Unbeatable Mind training programs have transformed tens of thousands from all walks of life.

Mark’s own leadership skills were initially honed in the SEALs, where he was the honor man of his BUDS class while leading his entire boat crew to success — which has never been repeated in BUDS history. He later built several successful operations, two of which have scaled into 8-figure businesses. His mission now is to lead 100 million to the path of integrated development through his motivational speaking, Unbeatable Mind podcasts and books, by 2045. The SEAL students he teaches make it through training with a 90% success rate, and the breathing, visualization and concentration practices he has taught are now standard at BUDS and in Air Force Special Ops training. Mark helps others to motivate in order to achieve maximum levels of success, mentally and physically.

Mark addresses integration and training of the whole body-mind-spirit system in his approach which he calls the Five Mountains. He teaches this unique philosophy to executives, corporate and elite sports teams and entrepreneurs through motivational speeches. His keynotes and training have all been rated five stars or “best ever” – with topics he draws from his best selling books including The Way of the SEAL, Unbeatable Mind and Staring Down the Wolf.

Staring Down the Wolf

What does it take to command a team of elite individuals? It requires a commitment to seven key principles: Courage, Trust, Respect, Growth, Excellence, Resiliency, and Alignment. All of these are present in an elite team which commits to them deeply in order to forge the character worthy of uncommon success.

Retired Navy SEAL Commander, entrepreneur and New York Times best-selling author Mark Divine (founder of SEALFIT,, and Unbeatable Mind) reveals what makes the culture of an elite team, and how to get your own team to commit to serve at an elite level. Using principles he learned on the battlefield, training SEALs, and in his own entrepreneurial and growth company ventures, Mark knows what it is to lead elite teams, and how easily the team can fail by breaching these commitments.

Elite teams challenge themselves to step up everyday to do the uncommon. Developing the principles yourself and aligning your team around these commitments will allow you to thrive in VUCA (volatility, uncertainty, complexity, ambiguity) environments, no matter your background or leadership experience. Drawing from his 20 years leading SEALs, and 25 years of success and failure in entrepreneurship and 10 years coaching corporate clients, Mark Divine shares a very unique perspective that will allow you to unlock the tremendous power of your team.

What You’ll Learn

  • Leaders should never try to act like they are perfect.
  • If you show up as the strongest, smartest, and most perfect, you will shut your team down.
  • Your team will prefer if you admit when you’re scared and don’t have all the answers
  • We are all flawed humans, but when we commit to a team, we can execute impossible missions.
  • Mission success depends on making the team members grow as people.
  • True leadership is in the messy parts.
  • Leading an elite team in the civilian world is a lot harder than in the military.
  • In all cases, YOU become your biggest limiting factor.
  • Emotional development is the biggest and most avoided obstacle for leaders. It’s also the most important.
  • Emotional baggage from your childhood becomes part of your shadow.
  • Most people won’t face the trauma from their past.
  • Look at emotional work just like a fitness, diet, or business plan.
  • Confront codependence and people pleasing.
  • The importance of a meditation practice
  • How we create protective masks to cover our shadow side
  • Mark Divine admits that he could’ve easily become a highly successful, materialistic jerk.
  • What’s the primary purpose of life? It’s not to fulfill a calling. That is the secondary mission.
  • The primary purpose of life is to evolve, to uncover our negative qualities and cultivate positive ones so that we can serve others.
  • How to be humble and transparent without holding yourself and others from risk
  • Don’t blame others when the team fails. Tell them, “I’m in charge. It’s my responsibility. How can we learn from this?”
  • Showing up as your true self
  • Being supportive of your team instead of taking all the glory
  • Mark’s experience with his adopted son
  • Why kids lose trust in their parents
  • How to trigger accelerated growth
  • Bringing mindfulness exercises into your team culture
  • Alignment is how you communicate and create shared consciousness amongst the team. The team becomes the new leader.
  • How operating as an elite leader will benefit you, the world, and the planet.
  • You will always get more profit from serving others first.
  • Communicate your alignment daily.
  • Developing world-centric care and concern
  • Post COVID: How can we do this better and not go back to the way we were before?
  • Create a new “uncommon” normal
  • Why Mark Divine does not have email in his phone
  • Taking every other week off the internet to remove distraction
  • The clever auto-responders Mark uses when he’s detoxing from the office


The Secrets to Achieving Wildly Important Goals with Mark Divine

Create an Unbeatable Mind, Body, and Become Sealfit with Mark Divine

How To Create An Unbeatable Mind with Navy Seal Mark Divine


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Mark Divine’s Links

Mark’s Daily Brief on YouTube









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