On the #1 Brain Training Newsletter
in the World

Email Address

Improving perseverance

Antarctica’s Most Famous Shipwreck, the Endurance, Teaches Us All How to Overcome our Limiting Beliefs

Author: NeuroGym Team | 2022

The Endurance shipwreck has finally been found!

It took more than 100 years, but just like the search team’s perseverance, the story of the Endurance and its crew is a remarkable one.

The Endurance is Antarctica’s most famous shipwreck. It was pushing boundaries and could inspire fear, but the focus was on opportunities.

Finding the Endurance Shipwreck

The Endurance joined two groups together: The first was the crew on the original ship, and the second was the crew aboard the Agulhas II, which launched a search mission.


Setting Sail

In February 1915, Ernest Shackleton, an explorer, and a 27-man crew set sail on the Endurance. It was a masterful ship that was going to break the ice and help the crew to get to Antarctica.

Unfortunately, the crew soon faced the unimaginable.

The ship was slowly being crushed by thick layers of ice on the surface of the ocean. It couldn’t break through the ice, and eventually, the ship was engulfed by water.

As the Endurance sank, Ernest Shackleton and his crew had to make a decision: Die in the icy water or do everything possible to survive.

It’s Found

Many missions have been launched since the sinking to find the Endurance. Its exact position has never been known, but all of that changed earlier this year.

A new search mission resulted in success. The Endurance has been found!

The crew aboard the Agulhas II identified the wreck of the Endurance at the bottom of the ocean a mere four miles from where it sank.

The “Endurance” name was clearly visible across the wooden ship, which happens to be in excellent condition.

It isn’t badly decayed at all, as the ocean has preserved it to some extent. The shipwreck has also become home to large amounts of marine life.

Reflecting on Different Situations

The Endurance tells stories of excitement, heartbreak, and being found again.

It’s quite applicable to life in general: There will be ups and downs, excitement and fear.

How you experience these events comes down to your thoughts preceding, during, and after them.

You can take control of these thoughts, especially ones regarding fear, by attending our training on Winning the Game of Fear. It could change your life and help you to be fearless.

Against All Odds

Just like the Endurance Shipwreck survived to tell its story, the crew onboard also have a remarkable story.


Improving Perseverance Among the Crew

The Endurance itself was having a tough time breaking through the ice. 

After only a few days, the Endurance slowed to traveling about 30 miles daily. It was testing for the crew as this was a snail’s crawl and could easily result in impatience among them.

The crew was already improving perseverance among them because they had to be patient, wait, and allow the ship to do its work.

Within days, the worst happened: The Endurance was caving under the pressure of the ice, and the reality that it would sink soon became evident.

A Great Leader

Shackleton couldn’t allow his crew to be part of the ship’s demise. He made the risky decision to abandon the ship amid temperatures of -16 degrees Fahrenheit.

Under the instruction of Shackleton, the crew moved supplies, lifeboats, and equipment onto the thick layers of ice surrounding the Endurance. 

They continued to do so for more than 24 hours and over subsequent days until the ship was fully submerged by the ocean.


Shackleton and his crew knew the ice could damage the lifeboats, so they didn’t want to use them until necessary. They made the decision to remain on the ice in the hopes of floating toward one of the islands within the ocean.

It didn’t happen. Eventually, the crew made it to Elephant Island by using the lifeboats. It wasn’t enough. 

The crew had limited supplies, and the remote location meant they would need external help to be saved.

Shackleton only left it so long before making a life-saving decision. He chose to board a lifeboat with several crew members to get to South Georgia in pursuit of help.

Amazingly, they made it, but it took four different attempts to rescue the remaining crew. All of them survived due to their will to live, tenacity, and keeping their thoughts in check.

Mental Preparation 

Without a doubt, the crew aboard the Endurance had many thoughts going through their heads in the final days of the ship.

Fear, hopelessness, and worries about whether they would ever see their families again were normal.


Searching for Hope

Even with these tumultuous times, the crew never gave up.

They constantly turned to each other for motivation and reminders of why they would survive rather than dwelling on the idea of death.

The story of the Endurance shows that even in hopeless situations, you can find hope.

Overcoming Challenges

Coping during difficult circumstances isn’t easy. It requires a lot of mental prowess, thinking, and believing.

It’s normal to question yourself, other people, and the world as a whole. It comes down to limiting beliefs.

If you can take control of your thoughts during challenging circumstances, then you can change the narrative. You can prepare mentally for what’s to come and face situations without fear.

Living Fearlessly

Fear can stop you from doing what you want in life. It could stop you from boarding the Endurance that presents opportunities in your life—even if there is a risk of failure.

Taking the first steps to a more positive future starts in your mind.

Learn more about Winning the Game of Fear so that you can live fearlessly and with excitement for everything you attempt.

Overcoming Limiting Beliefs

Limiting beliefs are ideas we have that keep us back in life. It’s something that stops you from chasing your dreams and living the life you really want. 

Ultimately, what we believe shapes what happens. You want your beliefs to reflect positivity, opportunity, and perseverance. It starts with overcoming limiting beliefs.

Types of Limiting Beliefs

Identifying your limiting beliefs are the first step to getting over them.

The first type is beliefs about yourself. The second type is beliefs about other people. The final type is beliefs about the world.

Let’s identify some of the limiting beliefs that the crew of the Endurance might have had during their challenging times.

About themselves: I always fail when I attempt something.

About others: I should never trust someone else to protect my life.

About the world: The ice won’t ever allow the rescue team to reach us.


Beliefs Aren’t Facts

What limiting beliefs do you have?

These beliefs aren’t true; it’s just an idea you have.

Sure, people or the world could have shaped these beliefs and proven them true before, but this doesn’t mean the belief is universally applicable.

All your limiting beliefs are doing is keeping you back from what you want.

Once you identify the beliefs that have shaped your life, you can start changing them.

Imagine how the limiting beliefs of the crew on the Endurance could have changed during their time at sea.

It could have become this: Every attempt at something is a chance for success. Other people want the best for my life. The rescue team will do everything necessary to save us.

Challenge Your Thoughts

Your beliefs become a subconscious part of your brain and pop up whenever something scary might happen. They silence you before you even begin.

Instead of giving in to your thoughts and limiting beliefs, you have to face them.

It’s scary and could include fear, but the results can be life-changing.

Whenever you are negative or identify a belief that is holding you back, ask yourself:

  • Why do I think this is true?
  • Where does this belief come from?
  • How is it affecting my life?

The answers to these questions can reveal the truth: that you are being held back by irrational ideas. You might even realize that some of your beliefs were formed by other people, so it doesn’t make sense to hold on to them.

Let go of your limiting beliefs.

Create a New Belief

Limiting beliefs set boundaries for your life that you need to break down. Identifying and challenging them is part of the process, but you may feel lost if you don’t have some kind of guiding principle.

You need to also create new beliefs that will guide you through life. These beliefs should be positive, constructive, and give you room to grow. They should also inspire action.

Identify a limiting belief and its roots in your life. Once you’ve done that, turn it into the opposite idea so that it is constructive. Next, identify one thing you can do to live out your new belief.

For example, if your limiting belief is, “I’ll never be an athlete,” and it comes from being told you aren’t sporty, then turn it into, “I can take good care of my physical health.” Your action point could be to take a 10-minute walk daily.

Fear to Fuel

Many times, what you fear affects the outcomes of every challenge. Proving your fear wrong can be just the thing you need to motivate you.

Find out how you can Win the Game of Fear at our latest training session.

It’s time to let go of limiting beliefs so that you can embrace progress.

About The Author

NeuroGym Team

NeuroGym Team: NeuroGym’s Team of experts consists of neuroscientists, researchers, and staff who are enthusiasts in their fields. The team is committed to making a difference in the lives of others by sharing the latest scientific findings to help you change your life by understanding and using the mindset, skill set and action set to change your brain.

Sign-up for the NeuroGym Newsletter and learn how to achieve your goals faster and easier than ever before.

We value your privacy and would never spam you.

You'll Like These Too

Join the Conversation