I keep on thinking about how much I love this idea.
The notion of “Extreme Ownership” as popularized by author and decorated Navy Seal Jocko Willink, at first, sounded to me like a trite example of too much testosterone spilling over on the printed page from a guy who no doubt is far more heroic and accomplished than I, but not someone I’d look to for life advice in the more docile comfortable confines of suburban middle life.
After all, I thought, anyone can scowl into a camera, and with the right bona fides, sound like they know something that you don’t.
But the more I look at that persistent undercurrent of dis-satisfaction – the “what’s wrongness” that I find in my life, the more quickly it seems to be remedied by one simple act. Taking complete and unadulterated ownership for where I am, what I have, what I want, and what went wrong. (and when)
Finger pointing is an insidious and sneaky thing. No one sees themselves as a blamer by nature. We all feel like our wounds are won by trusting too much, or giving too much, or not being careful enough with the inadequacies of others.
Blaming, and feeling victimized will eventually sap your spirit and sit on your soul.
It’s also something, that at least for me, I’m not aware I’m even doing – and yet, when i take a moment to peek, it’s always there.
If you are like me, and prone to over-thinking, and analyzing and re-capitulating what went wrong and why, and who did what and when, and how things should go, if everyone was as competent and as confident and as visionary as you – you can run out of fingers to point, pretty fast.
Feeling betrayed, even in the gentlest sense of the word, can become the soft background elevator music in which your whole life is lived – always there, always annoying, and always reminding you that your plight, your problems lie at the firm feet of another.
Extreme Ownership says – I own it all. The foibles and failures and foundational frailties that make life feel like a continuous jenga competition with fate – they are all mine. And strangely, that is completely liberating. And kind of exhilirating.
I’m not sure yet – i’m still pretty new at this. But i’m excited to feel like it’s all my fault. And then see what happens next 🙂