The Power of Discipline
Discipline Equals Freedom
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The Power of Discipline
Jocko Willink is the best-selling author of Extreme Ownership.
He’s the host of the Jocko Podcast, a top-5 business podcast.
He works with some of the top companies in America through his leadership consulting company, Echelon Front.
And, if that weren’t enough, he’s a retired Navy SEAL commander, most notably leading Task Unit Bruiser in the Battle of Ramadi.
If there’s one thing Jocko is best known for, however, it’s probably this:
In his book Discipline Equals Freedom, Jocko details the power of discipline.
It’s what overcomes procrastination.
It’s what prevails when motivation is absent.
It’s the bedrock upon which any success is built.
This newsletter is dedicated to studying world-class people and unpacking the ideas and insights that have made them successful.
To be successful at anything requires discipline with the process.
Today, I want to share 15 bite-sized lessons from Discipline Equals Freedom, then tie them together with one important point at the end.
1. The Way of Discipline
Discipline is the root of all good qualities.
The driver of daily execution.
The principle that overcomes laziness and lethargy.
There’s only one way to become stronger, faster, smarter, healthier, better.
2. Nature vs. Nurture
Every type of person has been successful.
It is not about nature or nurture.
It is about choice.
The people who are successful decide they are going to be successful.
They make that choice.
3. Daily Questions
Every day, ask yourself:
what have I learned?
what have I created?
who have I helped?
what forward progress have I made?
what am I doing to improve myself?
is this what I want to be?
is this everything I can give?
Ask the hard questions and answer them truthfully.
4. Mind Control
You are the machine, and you control it.
How do I get tougher? Be tougher.
How do I wake up early? Wake up early.
How do I work out consistently? Work out consistently.
You have control over your mind.
You just have to assert it.
5. Overcoming Procrastination
Where do you start?
Here and now.
Want to improve? Want to workout more? Want to eat cleaner? Want to start a business? Want to write a book? Want to build an app?
Start right here and right now.
6. The Decision of Discipline
Discipline comes from within.
It’s an internal force.
If you don’t think you are disciplined, it’s because you haven’t decided to be disciplined.
So make the decision.
7. Wake Up Early
People want to know the secret of getting up early.
It is simple:
Set your alarm clock and get out of bed when it goes off.
8. The Person You Can Control
People are not who you want them to be.
Even those put on pedestals have faults, weaknesses and failures.
Kill the idea of idols.
The only person you can control is you.
Make yourself the person you want to be.
9. Dealing With Stress
The first step is to gain perspective.
Detach and consider how it could be worse.
Then refocus on what you can control.
Don’t stress about what you can’t control.
If you can control the source or stress and you’re not, that’s a lack of discipline and ownership.
10. Until The End
You can’t relax until the entire mission is complete.
And the truth is, it’s never complete.
There’s always more you can do.
There’s always the next mission.
Stay ready, stay alert, stay relentless.
11. The Uphill Road
Discipline is taking the uphill road.
Doing the things you don’t want to (but you know will help you).
Doing what is right for others.
Training your body.
Controlling your ego.
Handling your emotions.
Discipline can seem like your worst enemy, but it is your best friend.
When working with others, a leader must compromise.
Find the common ground. Merge different approaches. Bridge personalities. Reach agreements.
These are external compromises.
But internally, it’s different.
With yourself, you must hold the line.
13. Fear No Progress
You should be horrified of sitting on the sidelines and doing nothing.
Waking up in 6 months or 6 years and being no closer to your goals.
You have made no progress.
Be afraid of being stagnant.
Then doing something about that fear daily.
14. The Warpath
We’re all on the road to war.
The question is: What are we warring against?
War against weakness, ignorance and confusion.
Fight for strength, knowledge and understanding.
This warpath leads to ownership of your life.
It leads to discipline, then freedom.
15. Not Feeling It
What do you do on the days you’re “not feeling it?”
You go through the motions.
Lift the weights. Write the piece. Work on the project.
You don’t have to be “feeling it” to do it.
If you need to rest, rest tomorrow.
Today, build the muscle of doing it when you’re not feeling it.
Those are 15 bite-sized lessons on discipline from Discipline Equals Freedom.
Here’s the final point I want to make:
These lessons can be seen as snippets of motivation.
And if that’s all they are, they are meaningless.
What’s most important is you use this issue as a catalyst to reflect on where you can become more disciplined in your life, and then take action to become it.
Three questions to consider:
Where is lack of discipline holding you back?
What would do you need to do to change that?
What’s the first step you can take today?
Give those questions and honest assessment, and then go implement what you come up with.
🔥 This Week’s Must Read
It’s a few short stories on various subjects with lessons that can apply to everything.
It’s the best article I read in the past week. Do yourself a favor and spend 5 minutes reading this.
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Thanks for reading.
See you next Sunday.