If you were to look up the origins of the phrase “burn the ships” you’re going to find a number of stories. Captain Hernan Cortes and the Spanish seem to be a popular version.
Regardless of which origin story you read, the basic principle is the same. A commander and their army invades some foreign land, and to make sure their troops fight their hardest the commander has the ships that brought them there (and thus could take them back home) destroyed.
That leaves no other option but to win. Technically, there is a second possible outcome but we won’t talk about defeat.
Yes, a bit of a graphic way to describe what really is “the point of no return.” But the lesson is what’s important: failure is not an option.
For some people, an extreme circumstance like a relative passing away much earlier than they should due to a heart attack or having to get rushed to the emergency room themselves quickly becomes an “it’s time to burn the ships” moment.
That’s when they “finally” start to take their health more seriously.
I’m not saying it’s too late at that point, because it never is, but why wait for that moment to come to find you?
How can you convince yourself today, which may likely be just another normal day, that it’s time to burn the ships?