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Discipline Equals Freedom: Field Manual

4.10  ·  Rating details ·  7,306 ratings  ·  644 reviews


Jocko Willink's methods for success were born in the SEAL Teams, where he spent most of his adult life, enlisting after high school and rising through the ranks to become the commander of the most highly decorated special operations unit of the war in Iraq. In Discipline Equals Freedom, the #1 New Yor

Kindle Edition, 189 pages
Published October 17th 2017 by St. Martin's Press
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Average rating 4.10  · 
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 ·  7,306 ratings  ·  644 reviews

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Nov 03, 2017 rated it did not like it
This is harmful nonsense for one very simple reason: an amount is not an approach.

Leave aside the many aesthetic failings (the black pages with white text, the self-parodically terse phrasing, the meathead vacuity) and look only at the ideas. What do we have?

"Work hard"

"Hard" is not what to do, it's how much you do. It is not a prescription, it's a dosage. He says again and again that the secret to success is early mornings and late nights, that the way to be tougher is "BE TOUGHER". That is no
Stephen Heiner
I had originally thought to go with 3.5, but that's not possible on Goodreads, and so I rounded down.

This can also be entitled "Intro to Jocko's philosophy." The problem is, if you have even listened to a handful of his podcasts, you've got the whole book, so for those who "get" and "like" Jocko, as I do, this book is not valuable. It's valuable to give as a gift to others who have never heard of Jocko, especially if those people are struggling with execution, as Jocko relentlessly strips away e
Dec 15, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Okay, hear me out. On the one hand, I read this book after midnight while eating licorice. The next day (which I had off of work), I slept until 11. So that's kind of EXACTLY the opposite of what the author is advocating for people to do in their lives. But maybe that is why I need this book. I feel like I'm pretty good at not being in denial about all my many shortcomings and bad habits. The thing I like about this book is that there is no room for the denial. At times it is a bit repetitive, b ...more
Feb 23, 2018 rated it it was ok
About as useful as a drill sergeant yelling at you for 30 minutes. Black pages, large gimmicky font with weird offset that looks like Instagram meme material, not much content other than a hefty dose of tough love. The gist of the entire book:” shut up, don’t complain, just do it!” There, I just saved you from reading the thing.
David Chabot
Nov 07, 2017 rated it it was ok
Okay, so I've read Extreme ownership and loved every word in it. Willink is obviously some kind of superhuman and I respect the guy a lot.


This book couldn't be more boring. It felt like reading the transcript from a motivational youtube video. I expected so much more from the author, such as real life example, thorough explanation of his thought process, even philosophy.

In the end, it's just a mind numbing repetition of a few keywords mixed with ''You can do it if you set your mind onto i
Chris De
Oct 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
If you follow Jocko, you have heard it all before. I was intrigued by his workouts that range from beginner to advanced, I am excited to start those. I could hear his voice as I read the book. Read it in an hour. Consider it Jockos version of Ray Dalios Principles.
Boot camp in a book.

Jul 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 4-star, nonfiction
A motivational kick in the pants if ever there was one. Loved it. (Also the whole thing is on Spotify – bonus!)
Benjamin Uke
Dec 03, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: exercise

Written by an alleged navy seal wrote out a simple formula for self improvement in a series of white typewriter lettering vomited upon black paper. Full of proclaimed techniques of mastery with no scientific backing or ideas but that of artistic bold block-text that belongs on spray painted on the wall of a gym.

I get that exercise and well being are a mindset, I get that. However there is a lack of underlying scientific knowledge that makes it insincere and full of empty bravado. It's not a 1/5
Emma Sea
Apr 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I got this from the library for the home-based fitness routine, but I actually really liked the whole thing. I wish there had been a section on pull exercises for absolute beginners. The "easy" option of doing a negative repetition is beyond me. I cannot hold my weight up with my chin over the bar if I stand on a box. I cannot even suspend my own weight hanging. I have nil pull strength. I cannot be the only human who is starting from absolute zero. Also, I weigh only half a pound less than the ...more
Sep 18, 2018 rated it it was ok
I agree with a lot of Jocko's advice. It might even bear repeating. And repeating. AND REPEATING IN ALL CAPS.

In my own words, the core principles found in Discipline Equals Freedom that I agree with are:

* Doing things is the cure for procrastination
* Master yourself, don't worry about people or situations outside your control
* Have long-term goals and move towards them in a meaningful way
* If you can't do what you planned (illness, injury), do what you can, even if it's just a little bit; keep t
Jason Crawford
I am a person who gets enjoyment from reading, studying, and working my mind. The danger in this is that many times I don't "do". I don't take action on what I learn.

"Discipline Equals Freedom" is a shot of motivation right into the veins. Nothing in this short book is anything ground breaking or new, but it is said in a way to make you want to attack your day with purpose and self discipline.

If you enjoyed "The War of Art" then you will love "Discipline Equals Freedom". If you haven't read ei
Trisha White
Jan 15, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: year50
you can read this book or watch the shia labeouf video
i did both
Oct 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Good, practical advice from someone with abundant credibility

This book got off to an uneven start for me: Jocko begins with some very short, rhythmic, poetic chapters on perseverance, will, and discipline. He comes off as a very ‘run through walls to get success!’ kind of motivational speaker, and I wasn’t getting much out of it.

I realize that mentality comes before action whatever we’re doing, but my figurative ears perked up once Jocko got onto specific tactics and strategies. He IS a fan of
I think this would have been great if it didn’t require supplemental material. The meat is in the last 4th of the book. But, apparently there are lots of other things to go along with this like videos and a podcast. This book alone amounts to a version of the Nike slogan, “Just Do It”. So I would say look for the videos and podcasts but you can skip this book.
Jan 20, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: own
I like Jocko's message. This is a nice coffee table book to pickup and browse when in a no-action state because it has a simple message: DO. Beyond the value of having a reminder to act, there's not much here.
Mar 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019-read
I have both versions audiobook and book.
I prefer the audiobook.
Kristin Boldon
Mar 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018, borrowed, writing
A short, powerful book about making short, powerful changes in your life. I am not the target market for this book; I'm not a hardcore fitness enthusiast. But there's something for everyone here, and the exhortations to cut the crap and hold the line are useful to me. I started getting up an hour earlier at the beginning of the year and now have a morning routine of yoga, meditation, writing, and reading before breakfast. That said, it's on the extreme side for emotional suppression and relentle ...more
Oct 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A daily dose of motivation

Not a traditional book as the first section consists of one or two page chapters based on a singular motivational topic. But lovely and concise for the purpose of motivating and guiding people without boring them or overwhelming them. I'd recommend this to everyone but especially the sort of person who struggles to stick with a book because their mind wanders. I found Jocko's advice on point and reading a couple of pages is enough to turn my lazy negative mindset around
August Andersson
I love the message. Not really what we're taught in school but if there's anything worth teaching, this it's this kind of wisdom . After reading this I will probably start training martial arts and get up earlier in the morning. I encountered Jocko since I'm follower of Jordan Peterson.
John MacIntyre
This book is split into 3 main sections: Thoughts, Actions, & Workouts. The first 2 sections are very short chapters (1-3 pages), which come across to me like short pep talks. If you've ever heard Jacko on podcast, you'll probably hear his voice in your head as you read them. Very motivating. Very impactful.
The workouts goes into detail about how to start working out and get to higher levels. I like how he tells you to do "8 sets of as many pull ups as you can do", but then tells you how to get
Jason McCrory
Apr 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: self-help
I really loved this book! The only reason I gave it 4/5 stars is due to the fact that I thought the workout routines section lacked specificity. I understand that this isn't really a workout book, per se, but a large percentage of the book was just that, a workout program. Ergo, I think Jocko could have dived more into explaining the movements a little better. That said, the book is still a must-read for anyone who wants the nitty-gritty on getting off their ass and getting the shit done. Thanks ...more
Mason Frierson
Oct 29, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There Is No Shortcut
There Is No Hack
There’s Only One Way
So Get After It

Discipline Equals Freedom. A man's entire philosophy boiled down to 3 words. This is what is most incredible about this book. The depth paired with the brevity. At 190 pages it isn't meant to waste your time and that's why I like Jocko's writing. It has an intent and it cuts out all of the clutter. He stays disciplined even within his writing. The book is broken into 2 parts: Thoughts and Actions. Part I (Thoughts) discusses
Melissa Stacy
3.5 rounded up

While I appreciate that this book exists, it just really wasn't for me. "Discipline Equals Freedom: Field Manual," by Jocko Willink (2017), is a heavy dose of motivation for anyone who wants to exercise, eat a paleo diet, and go to sleep every night by 9:30 p.m. so they can wake at 4:30 a.m. for an intense, muscle-building workout.

The text reads like a drill sergeant yelling at the reader nonstop. Willink frames all of life as a war, in which you, the reader, must learn to be ever
High Plains Library District
Apr 11, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: peter
This is a pretty good motivational read, and it's also a GREAT one to check out from the library. Why? Because it costs $25 bucks! I dug it, but I would feel a little ripped off paying that much for it. But a library checkout? Hey, the price is right!

Willink presents a backwards-sounding life philosophy, that more discipline means more freedom. To most of us, that probably sounds nonsensical. It sounds pretty nonsensical to me, anyway. But when you get into it just a bit, you can see what he's s
Sep 15, 2019 rated it liked it
I started this book without any contextual information on it, hoping it'd help me study more consistently. Chapter 1 was quite relevant to my purpose, but after that was all work-out related info. The book itself is basically a collection of motivational thoughts. The main ideology is simple: do it now, fight your weakness, stop being your enemy! There aren't lot of scientific aspects provided for the reader to stay disciplined. It's just the same idea repeated throughout the book: grind an
Mar 06, 2018 rated it did not like it
This book is terrible. Only 2 concrete steps to follow can be distilled from the entire book: get up early and don't eat junk food (also, some of the suggested workout routines in the Appendix do seem useful.) The rest essentially amounts to a book-form elaboration of Shia LeBeouf's viral "JUST DO IT" Youtube video; a collection of motivational catch-phrases. Some choice bolded quotes from the book: "GET AFTER IT.", "BE RELENTLESS.", "GET UP. GO. FIGHT ON.", "HESITATION IS THE ENEMY.", "ACCOMPLI ...more
Sean Higgins
Dec 04, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: men, print, productivity
Vishal Pranav
Feb 09, 2020 rated it liked it
This book is a must read for someone who is planning to workout seriously.

Jocko has condensed his experiences in life and his philosophies into a book. Obviously, his other books focus on almost the same topics but they are often deep into a specific element of his philosophy such taking responsibility for all the actions of the individual or his team in "Extreme Ownership". In my opinion, this book focuses on the overview of his philosophies and practices that he follows on a daily basis.

He pu
Soukyan Blackwood
Nov 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
all reviews in one place: night mode reading; LT

Don’t know about you, but I always need an extra kick as December creeps in. November is just such a meh month. So I picked up the shortest book by my favorite motivator, Jocko Willink, and learned me some things.

About: The book goes through three points of your health. The mind, motivation, mentality, and that little evil voice that tries to sabotage you, by telling you you’ve done enough, rest now. The food, what you eat, how that affects your bo
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