Three Simple Things: Leading During Chaos

What could you accomplish if you killed your excuses?

Recently, I was given a chance to preview the newly released Three Simple Things: Leading During Chaos by retired Navy special operator Thom Shea. His previous title, Unbreakable: A Navy SEAL’s Way of Life, has also been reviewed here. This time, Shea relates his experiences in transitioning from the world of warfare to that of business, while applying the same methodology he used to thrive in some of the most chaotic environments imaginable.

I’ve known the Sheas for some time: always willing to share their experiences for the greater good, involved, connected, razor sharp, and demonstrating impressive effectiveness in whatever arena they care to engage. They are the sort of people whose focus and intensity assures their voices are naturally attended.

Thom Shea came up through the ranks of Naval Special Warfare to emerge as a sniper. He is one of the breed of warriors whose weaponized math demands a methodical approach and awareness of the many factors allowing them to deliver precise fire at amazing distances. Luck is not a factor. Those shots are accomplished through skills assembled, filtered and applied in an environment where only results carry the day.

It’s the same approach Shea used to formulate his understanding of the factors affecting human performance. And it can have an equal impact, albeit in a positive fashion rather than being a whisper from afar that tells an enemy his war is over.

My studies in psychology called the goal self-actualization, and volumes were written by luminaries such as Goldstein, Rogers, and Maslow, whose works defined the concept. Shea, though, hardly interested in theory, has laid out a formula he uses to radically alter performance, by breaking down its components to essentials, and then demanding that  his clients actively pursue the goals they describe at the beginning of his consultancy rather than merely absorb his concepts.

Three Simple Things—acts simple, but not easy—are what he uses in each of what he calls the five pyramids of human performance: spiritual, interpersonal, intellectual, financial, and physical. A thorough discussion of each replete with examples of their identification, refinement, and application follow. Though the term self-actualization does not appear in his titles, Shea has mastered the doing of what others have only theorized, and that makes his title eminently worthwhile for anyone interested in the realms of self improvement the man addresses.

Thom writes in the straightforward style of a senior NCO, and judging from the stories of client success he relates, apparently provides consultation in the same manner as well. From the twenty-one days it takes to teach clients to honor their word, to mastering their fear, through to the ability to keep on the move for twenty-four hours straight, the methodology he’s developed works when used as designed. Not all of his clients got there on the first try. In reading the book, you’ll understand why, and undoubtedly see something in yourself that could benefit from the principles he relates. Three Simple Things: Leading During Chaos is made available for e-reading and in hard copy through major retailers by Clovercroft Publishing. I hope you’ll check it out.

Choose to Love, -DA


In production news here, the Editress has completed content review and transitioned into production editing for the fifth title in Sean’s File, Twenty-Four Hours to Midnight. The bridging, dual-timeline tale of Ritter at war in two subsequent decades shall, God willing, appear later this year.

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