prac·tice | prak-tis
Noun. The actual performance, use, or application of a teaching, method, custom, or discipline, as opposed to theories relating to it.
Verb. Perform, repeat, or systematically exercise an activity, process, method, discipline, or skill so as to acquire or maintain proficiency in it.
From Medieval Latin practicare “to do, perform, execute, exercise, practice”, c. 1400.
Eight Points of Command
The practice is the operating engine of the discipline. It is close-quarters, high engagement Life leadership. A systematic, eight-point instrument of independence. A deliberate means to self-create and self-sustain whole Life freedom.
On a monthly basis, the practice cycles through eight points of command and all three phases of action. Each Command Point plays a specific role in the value creation process. Together, the Eight Points of Command are the means employed in the discipline to Win – to thrive in the highest meaning areas of Life while maintaining functionality in all others at the same time.
THE PRE-ACTION PHASE
Command Points 1 - 3
At, or just prior to the beginning of every month, you work through the pre-action phase of the practice in Command Points 1 – 3.
Command Point 1
OBJECTIVE: IGNITE WILLINGNESS
The environment you live and operate in is relentless. It puts you to a decision for your well-being every day. To the extent that you’re both willing and able to respond, you advance your course, you progress, you increase your bottom line well-being.
But as it goes, your ability to respond, your ability to create and sustain the value you seek in Life is dependent upon your willingness to do so. And if you’re not willing, how able you are isn’t all that relevant.
Sustaining internal drive through the ups and downs of everyday Life is vital to your capacity to engage, compete, and realize the value you seek. As such, managing will is an on the day effort in Self-Command. It’s one of the first things you do every day in the discipline. It’s how you open every month in the practice.
The work you do in Command Point 1 is all about igniting your willingness. The effort is vital to the work called for in all other Command Points. The single action step you take at the beginning of every month renews your commitment to Win the way you want to Win and ultimately, to realize the Joy you want to realize.
Command Point 2
OBJECTIVE: CREATE AWARENESS
In Self-Command, to Win is to thrive in the highest meaning areas of your Life while sustaining functionality in all others at the same time. To meet these requirements month in and month out, you’ve got to have a clear understanding of the organization that is your Life.
You’ve got to maintain a current inventory of all the areas that impact your bottom line well-being. These are the areas that you invest your time and effort into every month. These are the areas that you’ve got to cause to perform in accordance with your priorities, your resources, and your standards.
The work you do in Command Point 2 is all about sustaining whole Life awareness. The effort is core to your ability to consistently create the value you seek. The action step you take every month to affirm and/or amend your foundation keeps your accountabilities, your priorities, your resources, and what you want in each area of your Life current and front of mind.
Command Point 3
OBJECTIVE: ACTIVATE READINESS
The functional state of your Life enterprise is dynamic and changing every day. As such, your approach to optimizing your bottom line well-being every month must also be dynamic. It must consider the state of your current state. It must consider the practical limitations of who you are and what you’re capable of.
The fact is, you’re not always in a position to Win the way you want to Win. In any given month, your performance requirements may be impractical given your situation. You may be experiencing challenges that threaten your standards in the short run. In these situations what you can do, what you must do, is optimize your time and effort to advance, to progress, to close the distance on what you want.
The work you do in Command Point 3 is all about activating strategic readiness. The effort bridges the gap between your higher wants and needs and the reality that is the execution environment. The action steps you take every month result in a deliberate course of action; a strategic plan designed to optimize your time and effort in light of your situation and your performance standards.
THE ACTION PHASE
Command Points 4 - 7
Throughout the four weeks of the month, you work through the execution phase of the practice in Command Points 4 – 7.
Command Points 4 - 7
OBJECTIVE: REALIZE VALUE
The environment that you live and operate in is complex. The forces of change, challenge, and resistance are relentless. No matter how well considered your plan, the map is not the territory. To realize the value you’re after in each area, you must operate with a high level of situational awareness and real time flexibility.
Execution is tactics. It’s navigating and overcoming chaos. It’s utilizing the guidance afforded by your strategic plan to shape weekly and daily actions given the real-Life circumstances you’re dealing with. It’s sustaining focus as you move station to station, area to area throughout each day. It’s taking the actions necessary to realize the value you seek, to earn the progress you’re after.
The work you do in Command Points 4 – 7 is all about realizing the value called for by your strategic plan. The effort sustains your focus and your drive throughout the four-week campaign. The action steps you take every week / day result in tactical plans that help you navigate your way through the execution environment.
THE POST-ACTION PHASE
Command Point 8
At, or just prior to the end of the month, you work through the post-action phase of the practice in Command Point 8.
Command Point 8
OBJECTIVE: ENABLE GROWTH
How do you know you Won if there is no measure, no scoreboard? How do you know where you stand in each area of your Life if you’re not assessing your position regularly and frequently? How do you improve if you’re not documenting results and evaluating your performance? How do you learn, adapt, and grow if you’re not deliberately thinking through what worked and what didn’t?
There is no path to whole Life accountability that doesn’t include taking an account of your actions every month. There is no path to optimizing well-being through time and circumstances without refining and adapting your approach as you go along. There is no path to true, reason-born confidence without a foundation of reasons to stand on.
The work you do in Command Point 8 is all about enabling growth. The effort connects you to your Life and brings about the changes that need to be made to transcend. The action steps you take measure and record your performance, flush out a Life enterprise-wide evaluation, and layout the improvements you take forward into the next month of practice.
How much time does it take to practice Self-Command every month?
CREATING + SUSTAINING EXECUTIVE COMMAND
For most, practicing Self-Command in the normal course averages out to an investment of between 2.5 – 3 hours per week. That said, leadership time can vary depending upon proficiency in the Self-Command craft and Life circumstances.
If you’re in a high intensity window – whether opportunity driven or struggle driven – the leadership investment required to think through issues, construct strategy, plan, assess and evaluate, etc. is more material.
Ultimately, depending upon your proficiency in the craft and the state of your circumstances, you should expect to invest between 12 – 24 hours per month into leadership work. That’s approximately 2.5% - 5% of your Waking Hours. An appropriate range for a well-run executive effort of a personal Life enterprise.
Done properly, return on leadership is high.