(Editor’s Note: This article was written by Navy Petty Officer First Class Benjamin Kittleson for the Defence Visual Information Distribution Service.  The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement.)

CORONADO, Calif. – The sun is still below the horizon as the ocean breeze blows on a chilly winter morning in San Diego, where the latest group of Navy Sea, Air and Land (SEAL) and Special Warfare Combatant-Craft Crewman (SWCC) hopefuls hits the soft sand for some morning physical training. Overseeing this training is an experienced instructor, alternately observing and motivating the class to stay focused.

“Listen up! Eat, sleep and train. That’s all you’re getting paid for!”

These are the three things Chief Petty Officer Joan Jennings, an instructor at Naval Special Warfare’s Basic Training Command (BTC), wants candidates thinking about as they start their day. It’s an important lesson she knows from years of special warfare assessment and selection: keep your goals in the now – and make them simple. This is how candidates travel the long, arduous road to join the Navy’s elite commando force. Humility helps.