A self-help work that makes a strong case for its method of understanding emotions in the workplace.

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OUTSMART YOUR BRAIN

HOW TO MASTER YOUR MIND WHEN EMOTIONS TAKE THE WHEEL

A professional leadership coach explains how harnessing the power of emotional intelligence can make one a better leader.

“Dealing with humans is unpredictable and messy,” one reason why executives, managers, and other corporate leaders often prefer to manage resources rather than employees. But people ignore emotions at their own peril, notes Reynolds (The Discomfort Zone, 2014). To be a better boss—and a better employee—you need to first understand how your brain works, she says, and then use proven techniques for “outsmarting” hard-wired responses. This process, which involves analyzing one’s emotions, can be uncomfortable, the author admits, particularly for those who believe that they should tamp down, not tap into, their feelings. But in clear, concise prose, Reynolds shows how taking time to understand one’s instinctive responses can be empowering, especially when faced with conflict or crisis: “Being emotionally triggered by events is a normal reaction,” she notes, but she says that one also has the power to “slow down and contemplate your reactions and viewpoints.” Readers can use her various exercises, such as keeping a log of one’s emotions throughout the day or listing “triggers” that lead to anger or frustration, to help recognize patterns and feel greater empathy. This promotes better communication, she says, which, in turn, creates a safe, comfortable environment. Further lessons explore removing roadblocks to success and creating strong connections with others. Some readers may feel that the author’s methods are a bit touchy-feely, but her process, which involves recognizing emotions and actively choosing how to react, is individual and internal—that is, it doesn’t require soul-baring sessions with co-workers or trust falls. As a result, the tips seem simple and actionable and likely to produce positive results.

A self-help work that makes a strong case for its method of understanding emotions in the workplace.

Pub Date: Aug. 31, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-9655250-7-7

Page Count: 180

Publisher: Covisioning

Review Posted Online: Nov. 11, 2017

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WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD

A LIFETIME OF RECORDINGS

Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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Necessarily swift and adumbrative as well as inclusive, focused, and graceful.

A LITTLE HISTORY OF POETRY

A light-speed tour of (mostly) Western poetry, from the 4,000-year-old Gilgamesh to the work of Australian poet Les Murray, who died in 2019.

In the latest entry in the publisher’s Little Histories series, Carey, an emeritus professor at Oxford whose books include What Good Are the Arts? and The Unexpected Professor: An Oxford Life in Books, offers a quick definition of poetry—“relates to language as music relates to noise. It is language made special”—before diving in to poetry’s vast history. In most chapters, the author deals with only a few writers, but as the narrative progresses, he finds himself forced to deal with far more than a handful. In his chapter on 20th-century political poets, for example, he talks about 14 writers in seven pages. Carey displays a determination to inform us about who the best poets were—and what their best poems were. The word “greatest” appears continually; Chaucer was “the greatest medieval English poet,” and Langston Hughes was “the greatest male poet” of the Harlem Renaissance. For readers who need a refresher—or suggestions for the nightstand—Carey provides the best-known names and the most celebrated poems, including Paradise Lost (about which the author has written extensively), “Kubla Khan,” “Ozymandias,” “The Charge of the Light Brigade,” Wordsworth and Coleridge’s Lyrical Ballads, which “changed the course of English poetry.” Carey explains some poetic technique (Hopkins’ “sprung rhythm”) and pauses occasionally to provide autobiographical tidbits—e.g., John Masefield, who wrote the famous “Sea Fever,” “hated the sea.” We learn, as well, about the sexuality of some poets (Auden was bisexual), and, especially later on, Carey discusses the demons that drove some of them, Robert Lowell and Sylvia Plath among them. Refreshingly, he includes many women in the volume—all the way back to Sappho—and has especially kind words for Marianne Moore and Elizabeth Bishop, who share a chapter.

Necessarily swift and adumbrative as well as inclusive, focused, and graceful.

Pub Date: April 21, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-300-23222-6

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Yale Univ.

Review Posted Online: Feb. 9, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2020

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