Admiral William H. McRaven (U.S. Navy Retired) served with great distinction in the Navy. In his thirty-seven years as a Navy SEAL, he commanded at every level. As a Four-Star Admiral, his final assignment was as Commander of all U.S. Special Operations Forces. He is now Chancellor of the University of Texas System.
On May 17, 2014, Admiral William H. McRaven addressed the graduating class of the University of Texas at Austin on their Commencement day. Taking inspiration from the university's slogan, "What starts here changes the world," he shared the ten principles he learned during Navy Seal training that helped him overcome challenges not only in his training and long Naval career, but also throughout his life; and he explained how anyone can use these basic lessons to change themselves-and the world-for the better.
This book and audio program are based on that graduation speech which originally was posted on YouTube and received 10 million views.
I listened to the audio book which the Admiral himself reads. He admits that he was apprehensive that a career military man might not be the most welcome guest on a college campus.
It all starts with a basic tenet: "If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed."
The Admiral goes on to explain the rigorous standards of the military and especially the Navy Seals and how beginning the day with a properly made bed is an indication of discipline and commitment and will carry through in your day and beyond.
He told stories of courageous comrades, devastating injuries and deaths and seemingly impossible situations. But the practical, common sense ideas espoused allowed the practitioners to overcome great odds and hardships.
It's a very quick read or listen and will give you a push to be better and deal with life's challenges. And, of course, to make your bed.
Reviewed by Dan Hanson
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