If you’re a person who struggles with discipline, like I do, then this book is for you. Talk about putting things in perspective. Here’s the narrative of a former Navy Seal who relied on discipline as the foundation of survival. Think about it. His dedication to honing discipline was the force behind becoming part of the elite team that protects our freedom, and now he’s continuing the path of modeling the power of discipline for leaders and business owners who desire to hone this coveted strength. He also shares that with everyone in his book Discipline Equals Freedom: A Field Manual, St. Martin’s Press.
“Discipline comes from within. Discipline is an internal force.”
While this seems so simple and well, obvious, it’s not always so. Too often we rely on the externals for our discipline, which is fleeting. The author reminds us that self-discipline is the key and “when you make a decision to be disciplined…you make a decision to be better.” And this requires commitment.
Jocko goes on with his advice on why we resort to believing we’re not disciplined and how to overcome that along with procrastination. One of my favorite parts of his book is the theme that we are using excuses to hold ourselves back from success. Also, he calls out how we delay by researching and dreaming and re-reading and debating rather than just taking action on whatever it is we want.
“Get up early and go. Get after it and you will become the person you want to be. And you become that person through: One. Small. Decision. At. A. Time.”
The idea that we have control over our choices and our will is something that we often forget about in today’s world. We are all at the mercy of so many things coming at us and family obligations—or so we think. Jocko challenges us to change our perspective and he cleanly cuts through the fears and excuses that we use to hold ourselves back from reaching our full potential.
“Declare martial law on your mind.”
At first blush you may think this book is written for those who want to power through workouts and build a better mind and body. When you read it, you quickly learn this book is designed for the accountant, stay-at-home mom, librarian, scientist, surfer, teenager and, well, anyone one who wants more out of their life.
Don’t chalk Jocko’s pearls up to the declarations of a drill instructor. He has tapped into his experiences, exposures and personal stories to provide us all with a challenge: If we want more, we have the choice to invoke discipline to get more. His book provides us with opportunity to look straight into the mirror and honestly reflect about what’s holding us back. From ego to eating, we have to look at our habits head on and use discipline to create the freedom we desire.
You may also want to check out Jocko’s podcast “Jocko Podcast” available on all channels.
I’d like to thank Jocko Willink and St. Martin’s Press for providing images for this book review.