FREED TO LEAD F3 and the Unshackling of the Modern-day Warrior
As we like to say, 100% of guys who post to F3 come for the First F. Fitness – more specifically, the idea of a free Workout – is the point of entry for every guy who comes in our (nonexistent) door. It is the magnet that attracts new members to F3. Done regularly, the F3 Workout will get you in shape and keep you in shape.
To be honest, at first, you will hate the Workout — both the physical exertion, which can be extreme, and the brain-spinning lingo of F3. You might even Splash Merlot. There is an F3 word for almost everything, and most of them involve an explanation that nobody will stop and give you. But that initial drinking-from-a-firehose feeling only lasts a week or two. We have found that FNGs get the hang of it pretty quickly. And then they get addicted, not so much to the First F but to the Second F.
What keeps them coming back to the Workout is Fellowship. That is the glue of F3. Why? We are not exactly sure, but we think it has something to do with the loneliness inherent in the Problem, which we will unpack later. But we’ve seen it work over and over again. A guys makes his first Post, Splashes Merlot, gets mocked and slapped on the back, and gets an F3 Name. As he drags his Six back to his car, the veterans say to each other, “Well, we’ll never see that dude again.” But they do – sometimes the very next day. And the next.
Once in shape enough to talk and understand the F3 Lingo, that guy, former-FNG that he now is, starts Second F-ing with the other PAX and getting a good snootful of the loneliness cure. After only a few weeks, he’s one of the veterans standing there after the COT watching some other FNG drag his Six back to the car.
Often, that’s when the Third F clicks in. That’s the Faith piece of it. This part of F3 takes the most effort to explain, and we attempt to do so in Part Three.
The Third F does not refer to any particular religion or worldview. It simply means that one has a concern outside of oneself. Go back to our former FNG, now an F3 veteran watching some other FNG go through what he just experienced. Suddenly, a light goes on in his head. He decides he is going to (he has to) EH his brother-in-law and some guy from work so they can be FNGs and Splash Merlot just like he did. He likes this new feeling he has so much that he wants to (he has to) share it with men who don’t have it. It’s that simple.
This impulse to EH another man who needs F3 in his life is what we now call the Third F. It starts at the transition point where a man stops thinking primarily of himself, where his concern becomes primarily external and in service of other men. If he follows through, he will have an impact on their lives. His transition from Survivor to Servant (another process we’ll talk about in Part Three) will fill him with purpose and a drive to continue having an impact. When the men he serves and impacts in turn cross the same transition point and become servants themselves, the effect is dynamic. We have seen it happen, repeatedly. It is this dynamic effect that has caused F3’s membership to explode. The First F is the magnet. The Second F is the glue. The Third F is the dynamite.
True Story: An FNG Posted one morning, Splashed Merlot, and otherwise (in his mind, and only in his mind) disgraced himself. At the end of the Workout he got his F3 Name in the COT and was dragging his Six back to his car when he stumbled accidentally into the Workout Q, who was obliviously admiring his pecs in the window of his Lexus. The FNG must have felt a little goofy because he went ahead and blurted out what was on his mind. He apologized for “slowing the group down.” The Q laughed and replied that he hadn’t slowed anything down. “Anyway,” the Q told the FNG, “Brother, you’re the reason we are here in the first place. You are why we are here.”
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1 Timothy 4:8
For while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20
Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.
Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers
“It’s like a lightning storm on a warm summer night; though the lightning itself may be scary it helps to clean the air. Negatively charged ions produced by the storm attach themselves to pollutants, which fall to the ground. That’s why the air smells so clean at times. The same is true when you deal with disagreements in an appropriate way.”
“There is a psychological law that says: Appreciate and you prosper; belittle and you lose.Unless we learn to apply this law, as psychological as it is spiritual, we’re doomed to an existence of mediocrity, frustration, and defeat. Appreciation is no simple, vague theme. Appreciation is a real force. It is governed by a principle almost as direct as a law of physics: We draw to ourselves the good of everything we appreciate.”
“To make life more bearable and pleasant for everybody, choose the issues that are significant enough to fight over, and ignore or use distraction for those you can let slide that day. Picking your battles will eliminate a number of conflicts, and yet will still leave you feeling in control.”
Leaders Leading Leaders
Characteristics of A Sad Clown
Put material things above experiences:
Material things afford only a short burst of happiness, but this quickly fades. Experiences, however, provide a richer level of satisfaction that lingers through connections and memories.
Hold a grudge:
We all get angry or frustrated with other people, but staying angry and holding a grudge is like dropping a cold, wet blanket over our joy. As we dwell on our anger or how we’ve been wronged, we allow no room for happy feelings.
Forget to be grateful:
Expressing gratitude is one of the top happiness-producing habits we can form. When you forget to be grateful for all that you have right now, you’re denying yourself a well-spring of joyful feelings. Happy people make a point of counting their blessings.
Expect others to make them happy:
So often we believe happiness comes from having others behave the way we want them to behave. We think they can make us happy by saying certain things, meeting all of our needs, or giving us what we want. But of course other people can’t make us happy, and thinking they can only contributes to our unhappiness.
Stop growing and learning:
When we stop expanding ourselves through personal growth and learning, we remain stuck in the status quo. We paralyze ourselves so we aren’t able to experience new adventures, ideas, people, and self-awareness. This leads to stagnation and depression
Avoid serving others:
Helping our family, friends, and even strangers we never see is a huge key to happiness. Service to others gives us a feeling of deeper purpose and meaning in life. It boosts our feelings of connection and self-esteem. When you avoid serving, you cut yourself off from a deep longing of the soul.
Being overweight drags down your self-esteem and confidence. It makes you feel unattractive and unlovable. And of course it’s bad for your health, which is a huge contributor to happiness.
Let life get out-of-balance:
When your life is out-of-balance, you suffer because important parts of who you are and what you value aren’t getting the attention they need or deserve. Your work, relationships, and lifestyle all need to work in harmony so you can feel whole and emotionally and mentally healthy.
Talking bad about other people is an insidious habit that is hurtful to others and to yourself. You demean and diminish yourself when you take pleasure in the pain, difficulties, or bad behavior of others. When you are happy and confident, you don’t need to gossip.
Focus on physical flaws:
We all have imperfect faces and bodies. Some people have more than others. Happy people do what they can to improve their appearance, but after that they let it go. If you focus on your physical flaws, you diminish your self-esteem and undermine the real person you are on the inside.