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The Hero Code: Lessons Learned from Lives Well Lived

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From the acclaimed, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Make Your Bed -- a short, inspirational book about the qualities of true, everyday heroes. The Hero Code is Admiral McRaven's ringing tribute to the real, everyday heroes he's met over the years, from battlefields to hospitals to college campuses, who are doing their part to save the world. When Bill McRaven was a y From the acclaimed, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Make Your Bed -- a short, inspirational book about the qualities of true, everyday heroes. The Hero Code is Admiral McRaven's ringing tribute to the real, everyday heroes he's met over the years, from battlefields to hospitals to college campuses, who are doing their part to save the world. When Bill McRaven was a young boy growing up in Texas, he dreamed of being a superhero. He longed to put on a cape and use his superpowers to save the earth from destruction. But as he grew older and traveled the world, he found real heroes everywhere he went -- and none of them had superpowers. None of them wore capes or cowls. But they all possessed qualities that gave them the power to help others, to make a difference, to save the world: courage, both physical and moral; humility; a willingness to sacrifice; and a deep sense of integrity. The Hero Code is not a cypher, a puzzle, or a secret message. It is a code of conduct; lessons in virtues that can become the foundations of our character as we build a life worthy of honor and respect.


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From the acclaimed, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Make Your Bed -- a short, inspirational book about the qualities of true, everyday heroes. The Hero Code is Admiral McRaven's ringing tribute to the real, everyday heroes he's met over the years, from battlefields to hospitals to college campuses, who are doing their part to save the world. When Bill McRaven was a y From the acclaimed, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Make Your Bed -- a short, inspirational book about the qualities of true, everyday heroes. The Hero Code is Admiral McRaven's ringing tribute to the real, everyday heroes he's met over the years, from battlefields to hospitals to college campuses, who are doing their part to save the world. When Bill McRaven was a young boy growing up in Texas, he dreamed of being a superhero. He longed to put on a cape and use his superpowers to save the earth from destruction. But as he grew older and traveled the world, he found real heroes everywhere he went -- and none of them had superpowers. None of them wore capes or cowls. But they all possessed qualities that gave them the power to help others, to make a difference, to save the world: courage, both physical and moral; humility; a willingness to sacrifice; and a deep sense of integrity. The Hero Code is not a cypher, a puzzle, or a secret message. It is a code of conduct; lessons in virtues that can become the foundations of our character as we build a life worthy of honor and respect.

30 review for The Hero Code: Lessons Learned from Lives Well Lived

  1. 4 out of 5

    Bill Tress

    This book should be read by everyone, beginning as early as possible in life. In an ideal world, parents would continuously deliver these values to their children around the dinner table and in private discussions. The Hero Code would be lived by the parents for their children to mirror. In an ideal world, the Hero Code would be part of our education system, taught by teachers and practiced by teachers and administrators to provide examples of living by a Hero Code. When we fail to practice the l This book should be read by everyone, beginning as early as possible in life. In an ideal world, parents would continuously deliver these values to their children around the dinner table and in private discussions. The Hero Code would be lived by the parents for their children to mirror. In an ideal world, the Hero Code would be part of our education system, taught by teachers and practiced by teachers and administrators to provide examples of living by a Hero Code. When we fail to practice the lessons of this book, the failure should be pointed out and an unemotional discussion should take place pointing to what should be done in the future. Unfortunately, we do not have an ideal world! The ten principles of the Hero Code are non-denominational; our author states they are the lessons learned from observing lives well lived. I agree with his assessment and he provides excellent examples to prove his points. I believe they also speak to the humanity of man. The control of emotions and the ability to moderate those emotions are part of this Code. The examples he refers to are not easy to achieve. McRaven says, perform these actions daily even in small ways and when the big decision must be made you will be prepared. A few of these lessons are particularly difficult for instance, forgiveness. The example of the man who lost his daughters because of our military’s errors and his ability to forgive made him a great man in contrast to his humble existence. The example of the families of children killed by a mass murder forgiving him was powerful and difficult, yet when forgiveness is given, it releases the anger and frees the victims to become victors. The example cited regarding John McCain was amazing and extremely hard to accomplish unless a lifetime of effort had been made to be ready when called upon to act. I will pass this book on and hope that I and other recipients will profit from its lessons.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Gina

    I picked up this book because I enjoyed both Admiral McRaven's book, Make Your Bed, and a graduation speech I heard him give. I don't think anyone could argue with the ten qualities presented as essential to the character of a hero, and the stories selected to illustrate their importance were captivating and poignant. I always enjoy hearing "life lessons" and pieces of advice, and I find them even more fascinating when the background or life experience of the advisor is very different from my ow I picked up this book because I enjoyed both Admiral McRaven's book, Make Your Bed, and a graduation speech I heard him give. I don't think anyone could argue with the ten qualities presented as essential to the character of a hero, and the stories selected to illustrate their importance were captivating and poignant. I always enjoy hearing "life lessons" and pieces of advice, and I find them even more fascinating when the background or life experience of the advisor is very different from my own. In this case, as with Make Your Bed, the lessons and advice result from a MUCH different perspective than my own, and from experiences where certain actions and decisions carry the weight of life and death. This book asks that you look at your values and at the consequences of living those values. It asks that you look at your consistency with respect to your beliefs, and it asks you to be honest about your level of integrity. While this book does not judge you for being wherever you are, it does challenge you to do better. I've already bought a copy to give as a gift, and I'm looking forward to listening to the audiobook of Admiral McRaven's Sea Stories, read by the author.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Steve Bullington

    When I hear the word "HERO" the first image that appears in my mind is Captain America. Here is an average guy that was given superpowers by the Army. But the reality is that we all already have the superpowers to be heroes if we choose. In his newest book, Admiral William McRaven outlines the 10 superpowers that each of us can choose to employ in our lives: Courage, Humility, Sacrifice, Integrity, Compassion, Perseverance, Duty, Hope, Humor, and Forgiveness. He shares stories of everyday people th When I hear the word "HERO" the first image that appears in my mind is Captain America. Here is an average guy that was given superpowers by the Army. But the reality is that we all already have the superpowers to be heroes if we choose. In his newest book, Admiral William McRaven outlines the 10 superpowers that each of us can choose to employ in our lives: Courage, Humility, Sacrifice, Integrity, Compassion, Perseverance, Duty, Hope, Humor, and Forgiveness. He shares stories of everyday people that demonstrate these superpowers and the impact that they had on those around them. By committing yourself to live up to and employ your superpowers, you too can be a Hero in your family, your company, and your community. And if you want to give a great graduation gift, this is a great recommendation. We need more heroes. Will you be one?

  4. 4 out of 5

    Evelyn

    This self-help book sets forth 10 rules for people to live by. Each rule is accompanied by a short essay including one or more anecdotes illustrating its successful application in a real world situation. This inspirational book is the perfect gift for the new high school or college graduate. It is short, to the point, and upbeat about doing the right thing and as a result achieving success in future endeavors. It rates 3.5 stars which have been rounded up to 4 stars due to its potential use as an This self-help book sets forth 10 rules for people to live by. Each rule is accompanied by a short essay including one or more anecdotes illustrating its successful application in a real world situation. This inspirational book is the perfect gift for the new high school or college graduate. It is short, to the point, and upbeat about doing the right thing and as a result achieving success in future endeavors. It rates 3.5 stars which have been rounded up to 4 stars due to its potential use as an inoffensive and inspirational gift for the new graduate.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Meaghan McGill

    Another book by a favorite author!! William reminds us all to be heroes, and to take one step forward, at a time. Yes, life can be complicated at times, but we should never, ever give up. Each and every single one of us have our lines in the sand, those fears that keep us from being courageous. Let’s express and reach to be rich in gratitude, in satisfaction and in appreciation. We can all be a hero. We all have something that makes us unique, we just need to find what our talent is, use it to ins Another book by a favorite author!! William reminds us all to be heroes, and to take one step forward, at a time. Yes, life can be complicated at times, but we should never, ever give up. Each and every single one of us have our lines in the sand, those fears that keep us from being courageous. Let’s express and reach to be rich in gratitude, in satisfaction and in appreciation. We can all be a hero. We all have something that makes us unique, we just need to find what our talent is, use it to inspire others, to give hope, and to make tomorrow a better day.

  6. 4 out of 5

    John Maurer

    “Being a hero is a learned experience.” Like his previous book, “Make Your Bed”, “The Hero Code” by Admiral William H. McRaven is a short, empowering, uplifting book that should be on everyones coffee table! This book is filled with inspiring life stories of individuals instilling 10 different values McRaven affectionately calls, “The Hero Code.” Loved every minute of this read and I hope to incorporate these values the best I can in my own life. Highly recommend!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Brenda

    Admiral McRaven wrote the book "Make Your Bed" which is an excellent book for graduates or any one starting out in adulthood or beyond. This book is equally as good. It goes through the qualities of TRUE HEROES, not those of fiction, movies of athletes. Courage, humility, sacrifice, integrity, compassion, perseverance, duty, hope, humor and forgiveness. He has also written a book called Sea Stories which I want to read. There are wonderful quotes in Make your Bed and The Hero Code. Admiral McRaven wrote the book "Make Your Bed" which is an excellent book for graduates or any one starting out in adulthood or beyond. This book is equally as good. It goes through the qualities of TRUE HEROES, not those of fiction, movies of athletes. Courage, humility, sacrifice, integrity, compassion, perseverance, duty, hope, humor and forgiveness. He has also written a book called Sea Stories which I want to read. There are wonderful quotes in Make your Bed and The Hero Code.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Michael Gagliardi

    Another short read by Admiral McRaven, similar to “Make Your Bed”. This was a great read, as he tells a variety of stories he has encountered and people he has met that are heroes. He breaks down the ten qualities we must practice and strive for every day in order to be a hero: courage, humility, sacrifice, integrity, compassion, perseverance, duty, hope, humor, and forgiveness. A great personal code of conduct to follow to be as David Goggins would say, “uncommon amongst the uncommon”.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Mars Cheung

    I missed the chance to see the admiral speak in person about a year ago and it’s something I regret. Having seen several of his speeches on YouTube and knowing some of his personal stories, there’s a remarkable gravity to his words he conveys in his writing and manner of speech. His books are a great source of inspiration for me.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Ed Beczynski

    I am so glad I saw Admiral McRaven on Fox news one morning talking about his book The Hero Code. I pre ordered it and in two mornings while drinking my coffee I read it. Was by far the first book I couldn't put down and did not want it to end. As a veteran I understood many parts. And as a business man I also understood many parts and learned so much. Great job Admiral!!! I am so glad I saw Admiral McRaven on Fox news one morning talking about his book The Hero Code. I pre ordered it and in two mornings while drinking my coffee I read it. Was by far the first book I couldn't put down and did not want it to end. As a veteran I understood many parts. And as a business man I also understood many parts and learned so much. Great job Admiral!!!

  11. 4 out of 5

    Kerri Willis

    Reminder you are capable In these polarizing times Admiral McRaven reminds us just to be human. One you can be proud of who serves others and the greater good. A quick read that left me hopeful we can be a better world.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Dana

    I love both of Admiral McRaven's books. They're both uplifting and positive. I recommend this book and Make Your Bed to everyone. I have a copy of Make Your Bed on display in my bedroom and I make my bed every morning to start my day out with a positive. I love both of Admiral McRaven's books. They're both uplifting and positive. I recommend this book and Make Your Bed to everyone. I have a copy of Make Your Bed on display in my bedroom and I make my bed every morning to start my day out with a positive.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Nova

    A collection of The Hero Code broken down into stories/experiences from ADM McRaven. A much-needed quick read for today's challenging times. He uses his platform to be able to energize what some of us feel but can't say. A must-read for everyone! A collection of The Hero Code broken down into stories/experiences from ADM McRaven. A much-needed quick read for today's challenging times. He uses his platform to be able to energize what some of us feel but can't say. A must-read for everyone!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Francesca Pohlman

    The Hero Code is a short read by a 4-star retired navy general. Military stories are not a favorite genre of mine, however, McRaven has a casual style to make them interesting. Good inspiration to grow in character.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Joe

    One very good book about life This is one very good book about how to live life. The virtues in here like humor, humility, integrity, sacrifice and perseverance for starters are all good values to have. The stories aren’t all of warriors either. Very nicely done.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Phil Gleason

    Amazing. He covers basic values that each person should practice. The stories are truly heart felt, direct, and practical to apply. Every person should read this book and live by the principles. Best book I’ve read in a very long time. Excellent. One I will reread over the years.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Terri Gill

    Another book as great as the man who wrote it. Life lessons and a code that we can learn from and make it a goal to live by. Inspiring, motivating and pulls on your heartstrings. Thank you Bill for another great read and all of your service to our nation.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Michael Kelley

    This book will inspire anyone reading it. Some of the reviews said it was a chidren's book. Well I am a 75 year old Vietnam and Iraq veteran who was deeply affected by the book. All of us no matter are station in life can aspire to be everyday heroes. This book will inspire anyone reading it. Some of the reviews said it was a chidren's book. Well I am a 75 year old Vietnam and Iraq veteran who was deeply affected by the book. All of us no matter are station in life can aspire to be everyday heroes.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Amy Rupert

    A lot of stories and ideas about what characteristics are needed to be a hero. I would say that these are needed to be a caring human. Each person needs to understand the importance of theses items. We should be teaching children these values.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Daniel R.

    Very entertaining, with powerful lessons. Great little story examples to make the points of what character traits comprise hero qualities. Great source of motivation and inspiration.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Judi

    This is a review of the audiobook. This is a quick, straightforward, audiobook read by the author. I enjoyed it and felt inspired by many of the examples of the Hero Code in action.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Michael Smith

    Excellent, short read regarding different aspects of what makes up a hero and individual McRaven feels reflex that value.

  23. 5 out of 5

    James Larsen

    Another short but great read! Excellent illustrations of qualities we all should strive to emulate!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Paul

    B: The Hero Code—Lessons Learned From Lives Well Lived. An extremely quick read but with lots of good points to ponder.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Jon

    Short, easy read focused on making your reflect on deeper principles of leadership and setting the standard as a role model. As always with Admiral’s books, I enjoyed to short stories he shares.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Joanne Peterson-Falcone

    Beautiful lives and lessons. DO THE RIGHT THING! Have love and compassion. That is a Hero. Easy read. Short and sweet. Thoroughly enjoyed the stories and lessons.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Colleen Martin

    2.5 stars. Mildly inspiring but not earth-shattering. Interesting anecdotes.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Marc

    Words of wisdom from the old Admiral. He has some interesting stories to tell.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Jason Watkins

    Quick little coffee table or bathroom break read. Inspirational vignettes on tales of heroism that offer McCravens take on aspirational values. Simple one liner takeaways with each value.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Betsy Christianson-Wandtke

    His words are so inspiring! I will write the code down and live by it everyday!! What a GREAT book!!

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