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John O’Leary welcomes retired Navy SEAL Captain John Doolittle on the Live Inspired Podcast to share about his 25 years of service to the United States of America, and his resilience, determination, faithfulness and humility.

Retired Navy SEAL Captain John Doolittle dedicated 25 years of service to the United States of America, embodying resilience, determination, faithfulness and humility.

Today, John shares his incredible journey of becoming a Navy SEAL, the struggles he faced and the invaluable lessons he learned along the way. Plus, the importance of camaraderie, the power of leaning on others, the immense strength found in mental toughness, how these qualities shaped his path and what it can do for you as you navigate your path forward.

My friends, this conversation is a reminder that life is a series of challenges, and developing the strength to rise again and again can make a difference for ourselves and those that we are called to serve.

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  • In his 25 year career with the United States Navy, John worked in 72 countries.
  • “As we appreciate the hard times that we go through, it actually shapes us in really beautiful ways.”
  • While training to be a Navy SEAL, John learned early on of the importance of camaraderie and that there’s always something for every single person that they can’t do by themselves.
  • During Hell Week, John realized that your body can always do more than you think it can, and the mind is stronger than the body.
  • One evolution at a time: After some Navy SEALs got a hold of the playbook for Hell Week, they quit, overwhelmed by what was to come. And yet, in taking hard things in life one day, hour or minute at a time, you can overcome.
  • To honor Neil Roberts, his friend and the first SEAL killed in combat post-9/11, John decided to swim the English Channel. Struggling about halfway through, inspiration from his dad aboard the pilot boat propelled him to finish.
  • Everybody has a breaking point: While on his 14th deployment and at the pinnacle of his Navy SEAL’s career, John’s friend Jobe Price, died by suicide, changing his outlook on life in an instant.
  • To alleviate stress, find balance, or recognize that each day is a gift, John walks up every morning to pray, journal and exercise.

Did you enjoy today’s episode?

You’ll love my Military and First Responder playlist. From former U.S. Secret Service Special Agent Evy Poumpouras to Apollo 13’s Captain Jim Lovell, don’t miss as I discuss life, love and service with these American heroes. Listen to the Military and First Responder playlist now.


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  1. Q. What is the best book you’ve ever read?
    A. The Bible.
  2. Q. What is a characteristic or trait that you possessed as a child that you wish you still exhibited today?
    A. Carefree attitude.
  3. Q. Your house is on fire, all living things and people are out. You have the opportunity to run in and grab one item. What would it be?
    A. Photo albums of my wedding and the kids pictures that we don't have electronic copies of.
  4. Q. You are sitting on a bench overlooking a gorgeous beach. You have the opportunity to have a long conversation with anyone living or dead. Who would it be?
    A. My grandfathers.
  5. Q. What is the best advice you’ve ever received?
    A. Your attitude matters.
  6. Q. What advice would you give your 20-year-old self?
    A. Take education more seriously and party less.
  7. Q. It’s been said that all great people can have their lives summed up in one sentence. How do you want yours to read?
    A. Love others like you'd like to be loved.