I first came across Mr Jocko’s work on a YouTube video created by a man I follow and respect a lot, Casey Neistat. The video was rather interesting and inspiring mainly because of Mr. Neistat’s creativity and editing skills. But some of the arguments made by Jocko caught my attention and fascinated me enough that I ended up buying a book he quotes in the video, Which this rather pointless blog post is a review of. It is worth mentioning that in my humble opinion it is just not possible for Mr. Jocko Willink to look more like who he claims to be. A Retired Navy Seal commander that is. The book was delivered to me the next day early morning owing to the modern marvel that is Amazon.
The book is rather short and has a unique black pages thing going on, which I like. “Discipline equals Freedom – Field Manual” by Jocko Willink can be summarized quite succinctly as a your very own drill sergeant. Although it doesn’t shout at you to do your work, It motivates the hell out of you and makes you feel guilty about not being as productive as you should be, It made me productive enough to read the book and then write this review in sum total of 4 hours which is quite a spectacular pace for me, Judging by my past writing endeavors.
I thoroughly enjoyed the first 150 or so pages in this book. The latter half of the book or a majority of it is just trying to give you a rudimentary working knowledge about survival skills and Self defense mechanisms. Which aren’t what I was looking to get out of this book, So I just didn’t take it that seriously. The “no bullshit” “No need to get your dictionary out in every paragraph” prose is a refreshing change. Although it’s rather unique as you don’t feel like you’re reading a book but rather you’re just listening to a super productive Retired Army guy just telling you life lessons in a very firm, typical voice of someone from the army I suppose.
Jocko Willink is a firm believer that we’re all given a choice in everything and we have all the necessary equipment necessary to make our lives the way we want it to be, And he drills down those beliefs in the readers mind in a series of successive Topics ranging from Self discipline to Compromises. And his analogies from his military life are very interesting and stays in your mind for a considerable amount of time. He tackles the usual topics such as procrastination, Reasoning to actually work hard and Provides a typical Military-ish disciplined mindset for you to consider as you face your problems of the day. Jocko Willink’s Mindset about dealing with emotion and logic and using them together to keep yourself productive is a rather clever and yet simple Ideology that I was actually quite fascinated by.
Jocko Willink acts as your very own commanding officer and gives you hard hitting truths and doesn’t tell you anything that you already didn’t know, but rather forces you to introspect and lead a more disciplined, Meaningful and productive life.
I believe that this is one of those books where you can get more out of it if you were to read it in multiple, very short reading sessions and I would advise anyone from reading it in a single go. I also believe that this was actually one of the better things I’ve bought from amazon and can act as a good motivator, Just read any random couple of pages and you’ll find a surge of motivation that will last you for at least a couple of hours, If not an entire lifetime. But then again as per Mr. Willink, Motivation is unreliable anyway and we should just stop sulking and do what we’re meant to do anyway.