Saturday, July 28, 2018

Review: Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win

Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win by Jocko Willink
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What do U.S. Navy SEAL Officers who have confronted some of the toughest urban combat imaginable have to offer a middle-aged NJ homemaker? A lot.

Extreme Ownership is about moving forward with purpose, with a clear mission, with clear communication among all team members, and with dogged determination to take full responsibility for the mistakes which will be made. It is written for business leaders who have problems and need a clear path for powering through those problems. However, the take aways are too valuable for such narrow casting.

I don't think Jocko and Leif know how powerful their message is for people with ordinary jobs, because they have operated so long within the grim space of battlefields, followed by the duplicitous boardroom. What about the beleaguered and weary mother? The plateaued athlete? Are we condemned to get our mojo from Reader's Digest or Get Stronger Now? The heck with that.

To all of my comrades who do battle on the homefront 12+ hours a day, if you want the real meat and potatoes of inspiration, read this book. Do you need to solve problems like meal management, too much TV or YouTube, ignored bedtime routines, a stalled deadlift max, and overgrown lawns? Listen to what Jocko and Leif have to say. It is as perfectly suited to the quotidian as it is to the hallowed. "In combat as in life, the outcome is never certain, the picture never clear. There are no guarantees of success. But in order to succeed, leaders must be comfortable under pressure, and act on logic, not emotion. This is a critical component to victory." True for the battlefield, and, IMHO, true for the kitchen, backyard, and laundry room, too.

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