Former Navy SEAL Craig Sawyer on Changing His Outlook and Always Learning - ITS Tactical

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Former Navy SEAL Craig Sawyer on Changing His Outlook and Always Learning

By Craig Sawyer

Craig Sawyer

As I grow older, my outlook is changing.

I’m realizing that showing love and appreciation for the people I care about most, is more important than momentarily looking “cool” to a few acquaintances. I’m learning to express more gratitude and genuine appreciation to those who have gone out of their way to look out for me when it mattered. I’m recognizing that too many people foolishly mistake kindness for weakness. I’m learning that it’s a liberating breath of fresh air to cut the rope and separate from habitual liars, setting them free to lie to others and once free from the lies, wishing I had done it sooner!

I’m seeing it proven again and again that fear is the single most crippling obstacle preventing people from achieving their dreams. I’m gaining an appreciation for those who must try to raise children by themselves after recognizing there is simply no equal to the environment of a loving home with a mother and father to raise secure, well-grounded kids. I’m growing clearer on the nature of the abuse of power and how humans just can’t stop themselves when given too much of it. I’m seeing that character absolutely does matter, especially in positions of great responsibility. Character alone is the only guarantee of a public official acting in good faith when it’s been demonstrated how easy it is to get around laws.

I’m quicker to hang up on solicitors and slower to raise my voice at those I love. I’m recognizing that the power of the pen is mightier than the sword, because our warriors, no matter how heroic or effective, can’t physically kill enough of our enemies to satisfy the demand by unending screw-ups from crooked politicians back home. I’m growing less tolerant of the cowards who lack the courage to enter the game, criticizing from the safety of the sidelines, those who are actually doing the hard work on the field. I’m recognizing that I really have a particular appreciation for animals, especially those that so charmingly look after their own.

I’m learning that men with the loudest mouths and those who create the most ridiculously exaggerated physical appearance for themselves use that appearance like a costume to hide behind, because inside, they are still sad, scared, broken little children that usually come from abusive homes. I’m seeing clearly that the rude and selfish are that way because they’re utterly overwhelmed by the sheer magnitude of their own insecurity and therefore lack any further capacity for consideration of others.

I’m recognizing that the truly strong look after not only themselves, but for others around them as well. I’ve learned by observing my own father that strength is definitely on the inside in the will to do what matters most, without regard to what’s easier, or more immediately attractive. I’m learning that a positive outlook is infectious and that smiling at others, holding a door, helping change a flat tire, or reaching out to someone who is down, can spread outward like a ripple effect from a rock thrown in a pond. I’m seeing that a hero is one who deliberately sacrifices of themselves to rescue others from death, or to radically improve other’s lives and that nothing less qualifies for that title.

I’m seeing that people are too quick to voice their opinions these days before informing themselves on a particular subject. I’m seeing that as science makes major advances, we’re coming to the realization that we actually understand far less than we’d once thought. I’m learning that even though I’m as flawed as anyone else, I have values, standards and principles, which mean more to me than people who do not. I’ve learned that the best things in life aren’t things at all, but relationships.

In the end, I’ve grown to genuinely believe we’re not just random particles whizzing around on a rock in a blank universe by accident. There is a big picture, a reason, a purpose and a plan.

Editor-in-Chief’s Note: Craig “Sawman” Sawyer is a former Marine and Navy SEAL with an extensive background, including being one of the first Federal Air Marshals after 9/11. You can read Craig’s full biography on his website and check out his Hard Target Training courses while you’re there.

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  • Victor Andrew Mathis

    Craig’s a helluva man. You reap what you sow, in this world, and the more good you put out, the more you’ll get back. Good article as usual, fellas.

  • Aaron Furey

    No doubt

  • randypb

    Well said Craig, and so right on the money.

  • Kurt Schultz

    Can I get his contact info so I can apply to whoever he works with/for? Just wanna toss my resume out there.

  • Israel Nickell

    It would be an honor to meet that guy. U0001f1faU0001f1f8U0001f4aaU0001f3fbU0001f44aU0001f3fb

  • Matt Bolton

    “Cool” does make a significant paradigm shift as we get older….or I mean wiser!

  • Lance Tubbs III

    You’re one of the good guys brother!! Thats why we all listen….

  • Jim Kemp

    It was a good read. I’ve noticed much of the same since I’ve gotten a little older. I’m 18 with 24 years experience now.

  • Luke Cain

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us, Sawman. Birds of a feather, I guess. Please keep them coming.

  • Tim Altevogt

    Your thoughts definitely struck a cord and I appreciate you taking the time to share. Thanks Shipmate!!!

  • Shane Leach

    Craig “Sawman” Sawyer, I follow a lot of military groups/folks and you, sir, are one I always look forward to reading posts from. I think the fact that I never see a ‘knee jerk’ reaction from you, like we do so many, it’s awesome and refreshing!!! Thanks for all you do!

  • Doug Hall


  • James W. Nelson

    Thank you, Craig Sawyer…what a great name to go with your service!

  • Christopher Moline

    This is something I shared with my boys.
    And I didn’t share it because we are Marines, although that helped.
    I shared it because it’s wisdom I agree with.
    Semper Fi

  • Craig Lawrence

    “Imminent Treat Solutions” needs to be a service that works somewhat like Lootcrate but it’s just candies from around the world.

  • Robert Cantu

    Well said !

  • Christopher Porter

    Thanks for the bit inspiration , I found some encouraging wisdom in your article that let’s me know I’m making better decisions in my own life and that relationships are ultimately most important in life .

  • Bill Wittich

    Welcome to the human side of life. Well said

  • Christian Anderson

    Great ! Now I don’t have to kick your ass . U0001f60e

  • Trish Burnside

    Too many good quotes to choose from, but here’s a definite fave: “Character alone is the only guarantee of a public official acting in good faith when it’s been demonstrated how easy it is to get around laws.”

  • Douglas Holmes Connolly

    Found it to be positive and insightful given your experiences and dedication to the teams.

  • Noal Mitchell

    Believe it or not, your opinions , outlooks, philosophies..whatever you wanna call them, carry a lot of weight..Word’s got around about Sawman, now…You may not know this , but you’re kind of a big deal…lol

  • Craig “Sawman” Sawyer

    Hey, thanks, brothers, for sharing my thoughts! I felt like expressing a few things, not knowing if anyone would care, or relate. I’m glad it’s sticking a chord with some good peeps!

  • Jonathan Raines

    I’d love to run this in the local paper, with your permission, of course.

  • Paul McEwan

    I relate very much at this point in my life. Excellent piece.

  • Patrick M Connors

    Sharing this with friends, all great thoughts Craig and on the mark.

  • Philip Collier

    Amazing Man,Humanitarian, protection of Endanger Animals, Solider, Patriot. Yesssir, We are All Always Ready for a “SawMan” Post & Perspective….. YOUR one of the,” Realest,Truest,”Call it how ya See It”, No Bullshit & Straight to the point, Truthfilled,Man.! Problem Solver,An Mentally your Insights- Have Changed My Own Personal Shitty day with, a different perspective poat…So i thank you for All you Do….. No matter the situation You Give REAL LIFE,Priceless Wisdom That Many Want and/Or Need..That’s priceless & All Respect. ……An You Talk & Interactions with Us is A True test to the Stella Character possess……So,Yessir We Listen, Relate & Back You. My Sons Do as well,Around here your Mr..”TopShot”
    MANY, Payers & Blessings.

  • Philip Collier

    Amen and Blessings over All in this Feed As well..#AmericanStrong

  • Lucas Middleton


  • Brian Collins

    I wanted you to know I came across this from a friends reposting and it hit home so very deeply. I shared it and had sonny friends chime in on how much it meant to them also. Ty for taking the time.

  • Craig “Sawman” Sawyer

    Trish Burnside, I find myself amazed that more people don’t recognize that strength of character is a MUST in an elected official. We’ve all seen what we get with corrupt officials. Maybe we can get back to choosing genuinely good people again.

  • Craig “Sawman” Sawyer

    Go ahead, Jonathan Raines. No worries.

  • Craig “Sawman” Sawyer

    Well, like I keep telling people, I’m just a regular guy who dares to go for my dreams, again and again.

  • DannyPatrick

    Run for President.Please!

  • Rafael J. Roca

    Outstanding and well said!

  • Kevin Gardner

    Hit the nail on the head. I find myself following these as well.

  • Susie Shannon Brown

    You are awesome…Thank you for your service!U0001f1faU0001f1f8

  • Noal Mitchell

    Humility is rare these days, Sawman..And you got a double dose of it my friend..The fact that you made it thru BUDS, (not to mention a gazillion other things) proves that you’re a little different than a “regular guy”…Regular guys are the 90% + that wash out..Most folks don’t have the willpower or focus for that..The Force is strong in you…

  • Jonathan W Millstein

    The Havok journal is fantastic. Glad your wisdom is gracing the sight. Thanks Craig.

  • Luis Sousa Pereira

    Its strange meet someone who think like us! Thanks Craig “Sawman” Sawyer!

  • Pete Rock

    I loved this quote as well. Character is important to all official duties. Especially in the public sector.

  • Shipp Chris

    I HAVE ALWAYS taken your posts and thoughts to a higher standard
    Benign military you have to however you are quite the inspiration to me. I know I have made comments before on your wall but damn I wished I could meet you sir. If even just for a moment
    I have a friend that is former SEAL
    it would mean the world to me to talk to you

  • Jonathan Raines

    Thank you!!

  • Collene Fournier Jeffers

    Nicely said!

  • Aymar Carter

    Very well written! Without integrity we are basically not much at all..

  • Joseph Bell

    Nice write up!

  • Donnie King

    all seal awesome amen

  • Michael D. Testerman

    Beautifully written Craig! Thank you!

  • Kino Davis

    It is an honor to call you a friend Craig.

  • Su Woodruff

    Your opinion and insight matter to a lot of us little people out here. Just so you know. Keep ‘ em coming please. Thank you for taking the time to spread your experiences with all of us. You sir, Rock!

  • Terri Nicol

    Absolutely spot on. What a world it would be if everyone lived this…

  • DavidMRapp

    the purpose and plan part is completely lost on me, the rest I’m good with.

    • JohnBeck1

      DavidMRapp David: The purpose and plan part fill an extremely large hole in the puzzle of life

  • Tina Roberts

    You give my husband and I faith that there are so many good people still out in America who share our values. I’ve shared with you before because I truly believe it’s true, you and my Michael are somehow brothers. It’s scary the way you both think. I guess it’s a Navy SEAL thing… he said he just had to go and do his thing first, before you… Men with Green Faces, then hand it off to you and your team. He said to take care Brother.

  • Deitra Gates

    I love this! The world has gone crazy and this gives me a bit of hope.

  • Paul Saar

    Character is a MUST when voting for politican

  • Bart Bechtel

    Well said Craig. Glad to see the transformation and the epiphany.

  • Zabrewolf

    Thank you, Sir. I will use your example and shall try to do better.

  • Greg Garcia

    Excellent read. Thank you, sir. I concur.

  • Lori A Fisher

    Hope you are feeling better.

  • Robert Cowart

    Ever since we met I’ve shared and respected your views on tactics, training, and life. Your ability to constantly evolve, or improve yourself impresses me the most. Thanks for sharing!

  • Jim Badger

    Roger.. good post

  • Michael

    Well said.  Amen to that!

  • OVVeterans

    SheltonBizServ Excellent article Michael, thanks for sharing! I’m sharing this w my AMVETS post.

    • SheltonBizServ

      OVVeterans you’re welcome Dan!

  • Johnny Dushman

    Wonderfully said.

  • Cameron Forsberg

    I needed to read this, thanks.

  • MarianneKawecki

    I guess most us Team guys think the same way ! At least that’s what I’m seeing . Happy Birthday . Can’t wait for my wife to read this 🙂 ! She’ll think I wrote it ! Ha ! Hank ( Bud/s#70 )

  • ecook

    Well said and happy birthday.

  • Bob Smith

    Dear Craig, I’m a Christian, 60 years old, watched you on Alex Jones show this week? I have a simple question. Since it appears the globalists are going to do whatever is necessary to win, why are folks like us not doing the same thing? And I mean start with the legal and non-violent things first.

    Alex’s paradigm of 1) listen to Alex and get informed and 2) buy his products to support Alex, well, no war in the history of the world was ever won with only something like that. And I’ve spent more than $4,000 with Alex in the past 10 years. So, I’m not anti-Alex, I’m pro-winning and Alex’s paradigm simply isn’t enough, ridiculously not enough.

    That’s why I’m calling for Alex’s 28 million weekly viewers to start massive boycotts against the corporations that fund Google, the MSM, and the plutocracy that’s funding all of the globalists’ plans and efforts. You know the folks. The ones that are boycotting you. The ones boycotting Alex, like Facebook, Youtube, those folks.

    Every time the American Family Association, a Christian organization, get’s 800,000 petition signers to one of its boycotts, the boycott succeeds. Imagine what 28 million folks can do.

    There’s not a corporation in the USA that will not gladly agree to fund our cause and reject the globalists’ cause, maybe except for Target Starbuck, the Home Depot, a few others. Why? Because if they don’t do what we want they go into Chapter 7 bankruptcy and out of business.

    That’s not violent. That’s legal. No blood gets shed. And we at least have a chance to win, legally, non-violently.

    But right now the 28 million are sitting on their rearends listening, doing nothing. I know you Seal training tells you that’s not sufficient to win this war that was started and being waged against us.

  • Dan Slaby

    Moral courage doesn’t need to stand behind a gun.

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