I recently read the book “Extreme Ownership” by Jocko Willink and Leif Babin. One of the concepts they spoke about is that Discipline equals Freedom.
At first, this seems contradictory. How can discipline make us freer?
Most of us relate discipline to punishment or doing something we really don’t want to do. It’s a little like that, but here, the idea is that instilling discipline in practice frees you from making lots of small decisions.
This is understandable. Something that becomes a habit becomes automatic and there’s no thinking behind it.
By choosing the proper habits and actions, you can go through your day on the right footing.
It’s about setting yourself up for success.
In business, you can instil discipline through the use of standards and processes. By creating these standards and processes, people can use them as a foundation to be more strategic with their actions. They won’t have to think about every single step that they need to take and focus on being innovative and creative.
But this depends on developing the correct standards and processes. Otherwise, they may not provide the type of freedom you want. Being too restrictive or prescriptive could mean that the strategic actions that may be required are not available.
On a personal level, this is also relatable. Use your habits and routines to free up your decision making, but don’t become a slave to them.