Have you heard the phrase “extreme ownership” yet?

It means accepting that you are responsible for all the factors that determine whether you’re successful in reaching a goal, not just the factors you directly control.

Those factors in your control can include your thoughts, actions, decisions, responses to emotions, and how you communicate with those around you. 

Those factors outside your control? Well, that’s just about everything and everyone else!

Just working, having a family, taking care of yourself… it can all seem so overwhelming, like you’re pulled in a dozen different directions all the time, with outside forces playing havoc all over the place.

How can you be expected to take any kind of ownership amid all of that?

Well, it’s capsulized in the book “Extreme Ownership” by two Navy Seals, and some of its lessons are summarized in this list of 7 takeaways we can all apply to our own, non-combat situations – including our determination to build a healthy lifestyle.

  • Seize accountability, don’t avoid it. When something goes wrong, figure out what happened so you can learn from it. 
  • Standards are what you tolerate. So, stand for excellence – which still allows you to have an off day sometimes.
  • Understand your why. Be sure you’re clear about your motivation. If you’re not sure, take the time to gain that clarity. Share it with anyone who needs to know.
  • Develop a simple plan. This means understanding the difference between “simple” and “easy.” Look for ways to remove complications, roadblocks, and doubt.
  • Make choices based on your priorities. The authors were war veterans, so they know all about living amid chaos. In high-pressure situations, prioritize the most important tasks and do them first.
  • Trust yourself and your advisers. You know when you can rely on your own expertise, and when it’s necessary to seek outside advice.
  • Discipline brings freedom. By practicing little acts of discipline, like making your bed when you wake up, you’re creating the mindset that will drive you through each day.

“Take ownership of everything in your world. Take ownership of your mission, of your future, and your life,” the authors say. “Lead yourself… to victory.”

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