Make Your Bed by William McRaven

Make Your Bed by William McRaven

(Joe Buhlig) #1

This is one that was mentioned on Bookworm at one point and I’m really interested in it. The author is a retired Navy Admiral so it has to be good, right?

(Joe Buhlig) #2

Alright, I’m breaking a tie again and picking this one for October. :wink: Look for the Pro discussion topic to pop up next week.

(Joe Buhlig) #3

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(Joe Buhlig) #4

Here’s our book club choice for October 2017!

If you’re new to the Pro Guild, be sure to check out how the book club works.

Questions about the book:

  1. What were your expectations of the book and were those met?

  2. Did you have any action items develop from reading this book?

  3. Were there any quotes that stood out to you?

  4. Would you recommend this to a friend?

(Joe Buhlig) #5

What were your expectations of the book and were those met?

For some reason, I was expecting this book to have a single threaded idea in its entirety. What I received instead was very different. Good, but still different. If I had read the tagline better (“Little things…”) I would see that the idea of multiple topics spelled out. But I still missed it.

Did you have any action items develop from reading this book?

I’m trying to determine what my early morning, first-task-of-the-day should be. It can’t be making the bed as my wife is still in it sleeping at that time. My normal routine is to get ready for the day first thing. Maybe that counts but it seems a bit off to say that’s my first “task.”

Were there any quotes that stood out to you?

I didn’t write any notes down on this one. I really liked the book but I didn’t have any specific quotes that I wrote down. There were a lot of stories that I really enjoyed but no specific phrases.

Would you recommend this to a friend?

Absolutely! This book is a consolidation of 10 lessons that are highly valuable to learn. I’m still learning some of them but know that this book has helped me gain perspective on my own life. I want others to have that as well. So if you haven’t read it, please do. :wink:

(Wilson Ng) #6

What were your expectations of the book and were those met?
I expected a hard-nosed, expect no bulls**t kind of book and yeah, that’s pretty much what I got.

Did you have any action items develop from reading this book?
Take charge of life. Don’t let life lead me by the horns. I’ve always been a fairly laid-back kinda guy as an island boy. There’s an easy-going lifestyle when you live on the islands. Stress free but sometimes there feels like there’s something more out there. Something missing. I need to take charge of my life with a master plan - formulate a five year plan and a ten year plan. I’ve been dipping my toes into the water with the 12 week year to varying degrees of success. This book talks about "learning from your failures (and yes, you will make plenty of mistakes) and re-iterating. Moving on and recalibrating our directions towards our future goals. I guess I’ll need to take the next 3-day holiday weekend and look forward to mapping out, brainstorming with my wife and kids to get a better sense of what the next five to ten years will look like.

Were there any quotes that stood out to you?

Find someone to share your life with. Make as many friends as possible, and never forget that your success depend on others.

Life is a lonely road to travel. We all need support and draw energy from others during tough economic times and a troublesome political environment. We also have to give support to our friends and family when they’re having a tough time.

I have a friend going through a separation. I was the best man at the wedding. But now I’m trying to give some of my own energy and support to both because I care enough. This book came at a perfect time when I was mentally drained from this rough patch in their marriage. I’m rooting for both to come through this. Whether they reconcile or divorce is not in my realm of control. But I’m trying to stand by both sides and maybe we’ll look back in 10-20 years and be thankful our friendship survives.

…determination and grit were always more important than talent.

I’m trying to guide my oldest kids through her Tweener years. She sees other people who seem to have so much natural talent to ace their grades while she’s grading away. I told her natural ability and talent will only get you so far. Determination and discipline will take us further.

I remembered the story of B.J. Penn, one of the most talented and naturally gifted MMA fighters in history. We had a lot of success early on in his career. His youth and natural talent got him through a lot of tough matches on his way to victory and success. But as he got older, he got sloppy. He relied on his natural talents and didn’t really dedicate himself to grinding and training. He would have an up-and-down career where he traded victories and losses easily. His discipline in training really affected him. So I tell this story to my daughter and remind her to always develop good study habits. Don’t rely on short-term memory tricks to ace the exams. She’ll see that, later on in life, she’ll be thankful that she developed determination and grit when she leaves the academic world and enters the real world. I’m reminded too that I’m not a polymath. But if I can use determination and grit, I can aspire to be the best version of me.

…at some point we will all confront a dark moment in life… In that dark moment, reach deep inside yourself and be your very best.

These are troubling times we’re living in now. A new president who tries to inspire hope in all of us but is at a standstill with his political colleagues. We are facing dark moments in our lives where we’re worried about our jobs and feel a sense of hopelessness. That’s when we do a gut-check and do the best we can.

Hope is the most powerful force in the universe. With hope you can inspire nations to greatness. With hope you can raise up the downtrodden. With hope you can ease the pain of unbearable loss.

As I talked about earlier about my friend’s separation and marital difficulties, I keep reminding them (and myself as well) that we always need hope. We may not like the end results but we can hopefully move past the difficult times and make a new life for ourselves. I’m not really liking the direction my friend’s marital conflict is heading towards but I’m slowly accepting it. I’m rooting for both parties to grow and become better versions of themselves. I’m also learning from their mistakes and talking with my wife about it. We’re also learning from them and trying to be the best of friends with both of them despite their separation. I know if I stand by them through this difficult period, they’ll stand by me when it’s my turn to need support.

Know that life is not fair and you will fail often. But if you take some risks, step up when the times are toughest, face down the bullies, lift up the downtrodden and never, ever give up - if you do these things, then you can change your life for the better… and maybe the world!

This quote is near the end and probably summarizes most of the major points. Man up when times are toughest, face your fears and obstacles head on, lift up others when they’re feeling down, and never give up when times are tough. Don’t be a pansy and let Life bullrush over you. Build up the strength and courage and never cower to your fears. Acknowledge that we can be scared. But then accept that fact, roll up your sleeves, ball up your fists and be willing to take some punches, roll with other punches, and fight back.

Would you recommend this to a friend?
I’d recommend this to my daughter who is twelve years old now but is starting to realize all the hard work her parents are putting in to make sure they’re getting a good education and mapping out her college future (hopefully?). She’s starting to see that life isn’t always breezy like a TV show where this week’s episode has a dilemma that can be solved in one hour or less.

I’m also recommending this to young adults or even bigger adults who are just having a tough go at life. I have several friends who are undergoing periods of dramatic stress such as a separation, loss of job, worrying about their job security, etc. I think as long as we have hope, we can achieve anything. Having the guts to admit that life sometimes ain’t fair and accepting that fact is the first step. We all make mistakes (despite our best efforts or misguided intentions). But we must pick ourselves up and get back into the Game of Life. Grind away one step at a time. Life isn’t always fair but we try to dig ourselves out of our current situation and make a better life for ourselves and our community.

I worry about the community and my group of friends. I worry about my family. But I feel better knowing that I am striving forward to make a better life. Whether it’s putting out job applications (and getting rejected) or starting to take on new jobs and expanding my skillset, I’m comfortable knowing that I’m not standing still and I’m doing as much as I can to make life better. I have different social circles where we talk over coffee or beer about our current life status. We’re cheering each other on and recalibrating to make a difference for ourselves and our family. I think the Productivity Guild is also a perfect place for us to cheer each other on. If I remember correctly, one of the core missions of the Productivity Guild is to offer a place for people to share their struggles and worries. Cheer each other on and maybe we get inspired by other people’s successes so that we can also spark a fire under our own butts to make a difference. Let’s go, Guild Members!

I guess we all take something different from these books at different times in our lives. This one happens to be the Book of the Month when I’m needing it the most.

(Josh Rensch) #7

What were your expectations of the book and were those met?

I watched his speech so I knew what to expect.

Did you have any action items develop from reading this book?

When I can make my bed. My wife is normally still sleeping when I get up so I will make it after or when I am on travel. The other thing is to Inspiring hope can be done with one voice, be that voice.

Were there any quotes that stood out to you?

Sometimes you have to be a part of the circus.

Would you recommend this to a friend?


(Joe Buhlig) #8

This sounds like it’s straight out of Mindset or even Grit. :+1:


I’m also struck by how the same book can change us in different ways when re-reading it in different seasons of life. There are books I’ve read that I didn’t care for that I re-read because I felt I missed something. The second read changed my thinking on a subject entirely.

I suppose we could make our beds with wives still in them, right? I’m sure they won’t mind. :wink:

(Josh Rensch) #9

You go first, @joebuhlig. Tell me what AWW does.

(Joe Buhlig) #10

Nope. :flushed: Not happening.

(Joe Buhlig) #11