Being tough is not the same as being rough.
You can be tough and not be rough.
If you are not tough you will be torn into pieces.
Being tough is all about being thorough, firm, truthful, forthright, uncompromising, unblending, confrontation when necessary.
You can be gentle in approach and still be tough in attitude.
Be principled, focused and undaunted in standing for what is right.
If you are not tough you cannot excel.
Mediocrity is usually the lot of those who blend and compromise.