Mark Green, global mindfulness coach, joins Kristin Maxwell to share how to develop resilience to take charge of your life. Mark has an impressive string of credentials. He enlisted in the U.S. Army and worked his way up to Lieutenant Colonel and Inspector General, while also becoming an award-winning taekwando black belt and earning a law degree. However, he experienced significant physical and mental trauma along with way. After being confronted with permanent disability, Mark learned to reconnect with himself and reset his mind instead of giving up. He now teaches other veterans and civilians the power of choosing different responses to life’s stressors. Listen in as Mark shares the habits he adopted — and that you can use too — to develop focus, rewire your subconscious mind, and become a true champion.
Hello, everyone. Welcome to Your SuperPowered Mind. I’m your host, Kristen Maxwell, and in this show, we explore the process of transformation and give you tools and strategies you can use to transform your own life. Today we’re exploring a topic that has gotten a lot recognition as an important personality trait in terms of happiness, and that’s resilience. Our guest today is Mark Green and we’re going to be talking about how to develop resilience to take charge of your life. Mark has an incredible background, he is a retired lieutenant colonel and inspector general from the US Army and an author, global mindfulness coach, and speaker. Despite starting his life out in poverty with numerous other challenges, he worked his way up from enlisted soldier to some of the highest positions in the military. He also along the way became an award-winning TaeKwonDo black belt and earned a law degree. After 34 years of service, Mark retired from the service and turned his efforts to helping others boost resilience and to help veterans ease their transitions back into civilian life. Mark, welcome to Your Super Powered Mind.
Thanks for having me, Kristen, I’m really happy to be here.
It’s good to have you here. You have a lot to offer. So, my first question always is, what super power did you uncover as a result of mastering your mind?
You know, that’s a really good question because the first time I thought about what has come out of all of the change that has happened even for myself is that to be grateful and what I mean by that is because I have been grateful to so many people that have decided to help me along the way, because one, I stopped being afraid to ask, and two, when I was purposely showing it, with the true way of doing it, I realized that that has a power far beyond anything within myself. So I think that’s the super power I’ve learned.
Wow, that’s a beautiful super power. And, you really do have quite a story. Can you tell us a little bit about your journey to actually developing this superpower and where you are?
Sure. So, the gratefulness piece is you know, like that has helped me to excel, but before I did that, I was lucky and I say I was lucky because first I was unlucky that I had a few great mentors in my life that planted some early seeds in my life and actually didn’t realize that they were planting them in my subconscious although later on in life, they become germinated because they were kind of dormant in me and then they just became alive. Because of those mentors, it helped me get from where I was, which I was stuck, I had a lack of faith, I had no plan, I had a lot of adversity, I had a lot of stress, and I wasn’t sure how I was going to deal with that, but then I went back to some things that some people had said and my first mentor said, “Mark, you can be a champion.” Well, the first time that actually happened is when I joined the Army after I was kind of a little hellion in Missouri for a few years before that. I ended up on the Army’s TaeKwonDo team and the first ever team to fight as a team and fought in two national championships and then that seed that was planted in sixth grade became true.
So, I’m grateful to that man who planted that early seed and then, of course, then I went on to my military career and then I moved on and you know, I’ve had my share of relationship problems and the other things that happen in people’s lives, but the other shift was that I realized that those things don’t have to control my life now. Because really all they really were events, and the other thing I learned is that it is now my choice to respond how I respond to those events which will change the outcomes for my own future. And so, that’s how I have learned to deal with adversity and also then focus on what I want and not what I don’t want.
Wow. You have just thrown out some huge great ideas to wrap our minds around. I love how you’re focusing on how you don’t have to focus on adversity and I know you work a lot and you have a book, actually, that talks about resilience. What was it, I mean, was it the seeds that were planted by your mentors a long time ago, but what was it that allowed you to actually develop that resilience and to actually get this mindset of it is my choice in how to respond?
So, I look at it in two categories. Usually, for me, in my case, it was physical and mental trauma. It was fighting a war in Afghanistan, dealing with the separation from family and all of the stress that it brings from having rocket attacks and the things that were happening to us in the areas, but then also having an aggravated injury and coming home and having to learn how to walk again and so what happened was as I went through that journey, I realized that some things had to change and I just kind of mapped it out one day in my head and I thought, well, what did I have to do to get back to health? Well, I know I had to rest. So, the model that I created came from the things that I had to deal, which was the first thing I had to do was rest, I had to rest my body, I had to rest my mind from the deployment I was exhausted, I was 23 pounds lighter than I was when I left, and I needed to rest and to stop and take a knee and just figure out what was going to happen next for me.
And then I realized, well, what was the other things that had to happen for me? Well, I had to reconnect and that meant that I had to go back and reconnect with my family, I had to reconnect with friends, I had to reconnect with my dog, my truck keys, so could go down to McDonald’s and have my first cheeseburger again after being gone for so long. So, the reconnection was like I needed that bonding again and things aren’t always the same when there’s a long distance relationship that gets spread out like that, but I had to reconnect. But, also with myself. Because, things had changed. My body had changed, my mind had changed, and things aren’t the same when you come home, so I thought, well, what else did I have to do?
Well, I had to reset my mind. Because I think of it as like a blue screen on a computer. If things are going wacky, well, you got to stop and turn the button off so it doesn’t dump all your stuff. And so, resetting the mind is the most critical thing and most important and cool thing that I learned out of that was I had a subconscious mind and I had not used it because I was a kid with anger and resentment and aggravation growing up and I was using my fight or flight response instead of my subconscious to heal my own mind. So, learning that there is a subconscious mind and what we feed it gets manifested on the other side, had been one of the biggest and most powerful lessons as well that kind of helped me super charge a little bit and I just think that you have to stop sometimes and just start thinking differently.
So, there’s four more steps; removing negativity and your problems and resolving issues that you have out there, or at least if you can’t resolve it, create a healthy limit of what you will and will not accept and then plan out your future. Write it down, set goals, do little things, just don’t expect big results in a few days. There’s no magic wand, just take time to map out your future and then in the end, reengage and when I went through that whole process, I stopped and I was like, “Wow. I feel so much better. I don’t have the stress that I had, I don’t have the feelings that I had. I can choose different responses.” And then I realized, “Oh, my gosh, this is powerful for others” so somebody said, “Mark, this isn’t just for you. I thought it was going to be just for veteran’s and military people”, and all these people that are reading it are like, “Oh, my gosh, this is the best book. I want to know how you do this.”
So, it just started happening and then we ended up as a pick for the largest consulting book club in the world, we ended up on Parade magazine with it, we ended up with 265,000 views of the first book with Megan Kelley’s and some other books. Through Harper Collins and she was a mentor of mine up in New York. Some great things have come out of me finally saying it’s okay to share your story, it’s okay to let the air out of the balloon and learn from others and then be grateful and open your heart a little bit. I was afraid to open my heart. I been hurt a lot. A lot of alienation, right? And I was like, “I don’t have to be afraid anymore, and what I choose is what I choose.” And that’s just been the powerful journey that I’ve been on.
Yeah. That really is powerful and you’ve got a lot of strength there. You know, we do have to go take a break and when we come back, I want to talk to you more about how others can develop resilience to take charge of your life, but before we go, can you tell people, what is the name of your book and also, where can they find out more about you?
Sure. The name of both books, the first is ‘Warriors Code 001‘ and that’s the seven steps to vital resiliency and that is the how to book and then the ‘Step Out, Step Up’ book. Both of them are on Amazon and that is the memoir I wrote that people can read my stories about my entire journey.
That’s great. Thank you. We’re going to take a really quick break and we’ll be right back.
To know more about Mark Green you can visit mark.green.