Military Book Reviews

Sovereignty: The Battle for the Hearts and Minds of Men

Sovereignty: The Battle for the Hearts and Minds of Men by Ryan Michler (Lifestyle Entrepreneurs Press 2018, 266 pages)

Every man is born with just one thing: his sovereignty – his power to respond to his environment and his circumstances. Unfortunately, most men have spent much of their lives giving away that sovereignty. Every time a man passes blame or shirks his responsibility, every time he makes excuses for his performance, and every time he trades his unlimited potential for a little perceived safety and security, he willingly submits himself to the mercy of others.


A call to men to guide and plan for the battle of life. This book is not a vague vision, but a powerful tool to put yourself on track and to succeed in the future you want for yourself.

Ryan Michler is many things. He is the founder of Order of Man, a resource created to make men better. He is an Iraqi combat veteran who served in the infamously deadly streets of Ramadi in the National Guard. Michler is also a husband and father. Growing up without a father, he noticed the benefits of having a guiding hand in a man’s life and the growing deficiency of masculine men in America. Therefore, he wrote Sovereignty. His goal is to help men achieve his idea of the three pillars of man; protect, provide, and preside in their homes and in their communities. This book takes his principles for success and forms them into a powerful and simple tool used for men to better their lives.

Key Takeaways

  1. Understand the situation. This book is not “just another self-help book.” Be completely and totally honest with yourself. Make the choice to better yourself. Then you must follow the path laid out.
  2. Learn the mission and the code of conduct. The three pillars of man (protect, provide, and preside) encompass the job of a man who wants to uphold values and lead a good life for his family and community. A man must protect their family and their community in the literal sense or preemptively. A man must provide for their family and their community. This ranges from being a functional member of society to providing finances, resources, love, and emotion under one’s roof. To preside means to lead oneself and those you have a responsibility and obligation to lead. These three pillars and the code of conduct presented throughout the book are the key foundations to the author’s success, and the success of the many men that have followed him.
  3. Use the plan. This makes Sovereignty different. It is not just vision and stories without direction. It is direction and detail. The Battle Plan is the simplest and most refined part of the book. It is the tool itself and the information in the book before are the instructions. The best part is a person can use it as many times as they want and for as long as they want.

Why should a military leader read it?

It has been my experience that much of military leadership is trial by fire. I believe this method of learning to be an excellent tool for those that can adapt and learn on their feet. However, not everyone learns the same way and not everyone is a good leader. A lot of poor leadership comes from an individual poorly leading themselves. I would want to see this book on my leadership’s desk. It would tell me that, regardless of their learning ability, they have a system to organize themselves and hold themselves accountable. That speaks volumes to subordinates who are often significantly more observant than leadership gives them credit at being.

Final Thoughts

One could read any section of this book and gain something from it. Understand that the author gear it towards men. It brings to light the value of masculinity and its true meaning. Through that meaning and value, lies the potential solution to Michler’s observed deficit of men in America. He started from nothing and now runs a very successful life coaching business. His thoroughly vetted instruction is simple to understand, and his many life experiences are easy to empathize with. Take control of your life, men; read this book and apply it.


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