A debut book unravels a tangle of insights and techniques for self-improvement.
Presenting an intertwined web of principles, this manual is divided into three parts: self-awareness, emotional awareness, and personal development. In the first section, Bird shares the steps individuals must take to become conscious of their values, feelings, weaknesses, and assumptions. In addition, she reveals the wide range of benefits for doing so, including more control over one’s life, less stress, enhanced communication, and greater success in achieving goals. Next, she encourages readers to become more emotionally aware and maximize some of the most meaningful emotions, such as love, optimism, humor, compassion, and forgiveness. Finally, she provides practical tools and strategies “to become more mature” and organized, such as striving for a work-life balance, managing time wisely, improving concentration, and developing better verbal and nonverbal communication skills. Bird’s teaching style is multifaceted, with an engaging mix of relaying information, drawing on other sources, and disclosing personal experiences. She’s also quick to call her audience to action, stating often that change comes not in reading but in doing. The quality of this work is not in the novelty of the principles as much as the arrangement of them. Readers may not have many grand “aha!” moments; instead they will find simple reminders of valuable principles and ways to implement them. The content is well-structured and easy to follow. Profound quotes throughout the volume enhance the reading experience. Bird is quick to admit personal weakness, which makes her relatable, but unfortunately this also may deter some readers from embracing advice that the author is suggesting but not following herself. On the whole, however, Bird’s tips are sound and her thoughts are well-articulated. There is much wisdom to be gained in these pages.
While it lacks innovative concepts, this guide presents a high-quality overview of many well-known self-help principles.