If you know who Jocko Willink is, then you know how intense and inspirational he is!
If you don’t know who he is, then let’s get you aquatinted!
In this article I’m going to give you the complete Jocko Willink Bio, highlighting his early life, military career, transition to author and consultant, and his explosion into the public eye.
So just exactly who is Jocko Willink?
Jocko Willink is a former United States Navy SEAL commander, author of six books, podcaster, gym owner, business consultant, surfer, and bit of a marketing phenom!
Let’s dive in and examine his life a bit!
Jocko Willink the Author
Willink has written seven books, five of which are on the New York Times Bestseller List! Jocko is an amazing communicator, and this is punctuated even more by the fact that he has a bachelor degree in English.
Jocko Willink Bibliography
- Extreme Ownership – How Navy SEALS Lead and Win
- Discipline Equals Freedom – Field Manual
- Way of the Warrior Kid
- Way of the Warrior Kid – Marc’s Mission
- The Dichotomy of Leadership
- Mikey and the Dragons
- Way of the Warrior Kid 3
In his writings, Jocko focuses on teaching the leadership principles that he learned as a the Commander in the Navy SEALs, out notably the head of Task Unit Bruiser, where he was stationed in Iraq fighting in the Battle of Ramadi.
My favorite book of Jocko’s is without a doubt Discipline Equals Freedom – Field manual. It’s written almost in poems and is mega inspirational!
Jocko Willink the Navy SEAL
Jocko Willink ended his 20 year Navy SEAL career in October 2010 as the officer in charge of training for all West Coast SEAL Teams. Here he trained the next generation of SEAL leaders using his battle knowledge that he had gained while fighting in Operation Iraqi Freedom at the Battle of Ramadi.
He originally enlisted as a Navy SEAL after Navy Recruit Training and “Radioman” training. Jocko is quoted as saying that he signed up to be a radioman because it was the job no one wanted!
Jocko completed BUD/s (Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL) training in Coronado California and then served 8 years of active duty on SEAL Team ONE and SEAL Team Two. He earned his commission via Officer Candidate School and was promoted to platoon commander. Jocko completed multiple deployments to Asia, Middle East and Europe.
In 2006, during Operation Iraqi Freedom Jocko was deployed to the Iraqi town of Ramadi with SEAL Team THREE as commander of Task Unit Bruiser. This is when Willink fought alongside Chris Kyle, the SEAL portrayed in the movie, American Sniper.
Task Unit Bruiser went on to become the most decorated special operations unit of the Iraq war. During his career, Jocko was awarded the Silver Star, and the Bronze Star, to go along with numerous other personal and unit awards.
Jocko Talks to Us for the First Time (Jocko Podcast Begins)
On September 25th, 2015, Jocko Willink was a guest on the the podcast, The Tim Ferriss Show, episode #107. This marked the first time that Jocko had made any kind of public appearance.
That episode of the Tim Ferriss Show is one of the most downloaded episodes of all time!
The reason that Jocko was a guest on the Tim Ferriss Show was because he was promoting the release of his first book, Extreme Ownership – How Navy Seals Lead and Win.
Upon completing the recording of the episode, Jocko recalls Tim Ferriss imploring him to start his own podcast…
“When we got done with that podcast, when Tim pressed stop on the recorder, he said, ‘You should really have your own podcast!’ and I kind of, you know I listed to him, but I had a bunch of stuff going on, the book was coming out and what not, and then Joe Rogan heard that podcast, and asked me to come on his podcast, and in the middle of that podcast, Joe Rogan said. ‘You should have your own podcast!’ So, I guess when Tim Ferriss and Joe Rogan tell you that you should have your own podcast, then you should listen. And I did. So I started my own podcast which is called Jocko podcast…”
So, on December 22, 2015, Jocko released his first episode of the Jocko Podcast, where he and his co-host, Echo Charles cover a ton of topics from Leadership to Brazilian Ju-Juitsu. A majority of the Jocko Podcast episodes feature Jocko reading passages from books that he loves and adopting them to current situations.
His Co-host, Echo Charles adds a light-hearted nature to the Jocko Podcast to offset Jocko’s intensity and seriousness. The pairing of two is awesome to listen to!
My personal favorite episodes of the Jocko Podcast are the Q&A episodes where Jocko answers questions submitted by listeners and Echo Charles provides color commentary.
Social Media Awesomeness
Jocko is a fantastic follow on Instagram! He posts in almost exclusively black and white, features almost daily pictures of his watch at 4:30am (or around there), and not only has words of wisdom and inspiration, but an occasional joke too!
Jocko on Instagram: @JOCKOWILLINK
Hey!! While you’re here, I have an Instagram too (shameless plug).
Me on Instagram: @Nick_O_Glass
Jocko Willink Personal Life
Jocko was born in the small New England town of Torrington Connecticut. Growing up he was into punk and heavy metal listening to and touring with Black Flag and Henry Rollins as a tag-along rodie.
Jocko lives in Southern California where enjoys surfing and fighting Brazilian Jui-Jitzu at his MMA Gym, Victory MMA.
He’s married to Helen Willink and the two have four children together.
Jocko Willink Takes the Navy SEALs to the Civilian World
Upon retiring from the Navy SEALs , or the “Seal Teams” as Jocko calls it, he and Extreme Ownership co-author Leif Babin started Echelon Front, where they teach civilian companies the tactics that they used in the Navy SEALS to help create high performance success in professional teams.
Echelon Front, offers tons of services including hands on leadership development, keynote speakers, a very cool Field Training Excersise (FTX), online courses, and a recruiting service called Overwatch.
The firm has grown considerably since its creation in 2014!
The Muster: Get a Taste of the Jocko Lifestyle
What is the Muster?
This is quoted directly from Echelon Front…
A GATHERING FOR ALL WHO WANT TO DOMINATE THEIR BATTLEFIELD, FOR LEADERS AT EVERY LEVEL AND THOSE WHO ASPIRE TO BE LEADERS.
This event is a two-day, intensive leadership training course, designed to equip attendees with the tools needed to build high performance, winning teams. Jocko Willink, Leif Babin, and the Echelon Front Team teach combat leadership techniques and how to apply these principles in business and life. Even more profound are the opportunities to engage with other highly motivated individuals and leaders in EVERY capacity.
In short, you get the opportunity to workout and train with Jocko Willink and Leif Babin every morning, and then you learn leadership principles that you can apply to life and business throughout the day!
The Muster began in 2017 and is now held in 3 to 4 locations every year. I have yet to attend but would absolutely LOVE to go.
The cost of the Muster is pretty substantial coming in at roughly $2500 for the two day event. But I will say this; That’s actually par for the course when it comes to self improvement seminars.
The Muster cost does NOT include hotel, travel, or food.
If you are interested in personal development but don’t have $2500 (closer to $3500+ after all expenses) to invest in yourself, then I would suggest the Landmark Forum, which comes in at the $600 price tag for 3.5 days of learning and is held in more than 125 cities worldwide.
If you’re curious at all about the landmark forum, I have multiple reviews that I’ve written that can be found here:
- What I got out of the Landmark Forum (and what you can expect)
- Landmark Education a Cult? (Not Even Close)
The Landmark Forum changed the course of not just my life, but the lives of many of my family members as well. It has countless pros, and of course there are also some cons, so if you’re interested, or have any questions, please let me know!
There is also a “contact Nick” form at the bottom of this article if you have any questions or comments.
Jocko Willink, The Business Man
Jocko Willink has a very large and very dedicated following! Because of this, people want to buy the things that he uses. He’s a very smart business man, but possibly the best display of this is the fact that he has his own store, called Jocko Store.
At Jocko Store you can buy Jocko Willink related items from patches and t-shirts to supplements and yes, even his own brand of tea, Jocko White Tea.
I personally drink Jocko White Tea and I love it. I buy it on Amazon in the big 100 pack! Link here.
I also have a black and white Discipline Equals Freedom Velcro Patch on my backpack.
Not only because Discipline Equals Freedom: Field Manual is one of my favorite books, but I also believe whole-heartedly in the concept that discipline does in fact secure you freedom to do the things you want.
Willink also owns his own MMA gym in San Diego CA called Victory MMA and Fitness.
Jocko Willink KINDA Does it All…
Jocko Willink is a very busy man, and his exploits range from leading Navy SEALs in Operation Iraqi Freedom to writing children’s books.
So, here’s a quick rundown of all the things that Jocko get’s into:
- Former Navy SEAL Commander
- Author of 6 books, 5 of which are on the New York Times Best Seller List.
- Gym owner in Southern California
- Black Belt in Brazilian Jui-Jitsu
- Co-Owner of Echelon Front Consulting Firm with Lief Babin
- Host of Jocko Podcast, one of the most downloaded podcasts on iTunes
- Has his own line of products including; tea, Ju-Jitsu Gis, t-shirts etc.
It doesn’t take a genius to see that all these ventures are not only well executed, but done in a way that causes inspiration and admiration.
Jocko Willink is quite a guy, and I hope you enjoyed reading, The Jocko Willink Bio!