An empowering extended metaphor that yields an array of useful advice.

HOW TO MAXIMIZE YOUR POTENTIAL

YOUR ROADMAP TO SUCCESS IN BUSINESS AND LIFE

A pilot, minister, and business consultant outlines how to be “pilot in command” in order to achieve one’s unique purpose in this debut Christian self-help guide.

McFadden begins this book with an account of a time when he, a certified airplane pilot, got lost while flying. He then recommends the 12-step process that he used to complete his trip as a useful tool for “landing your life at the intended destination.” Steps 1 through 4 are focused on “getting on purpose”: embrace the idea that you are a “pilot” in control of your own life, not a passive victim; identify your present location (that is, your current situation); identify your destination (the “destiny” you’d like to achieve); and “Develop Your In-flight Recovery Plan”—a strategy that includes anticipating responses to obstacles. Steps 5 through 8 address the “Ah-Ha” part of the quest, after you’ve settled on what your dreams are: “Get some altitude” by getting a boost from mentors; “Keep Your Wits” about you, because your biggest obstacle is often yourself; “Maintain Proper Heading,” or ignore distractions; and “Tune In Appropriate Frequencies” by listening to the “voice of your original creator trying to reveal your true potential.” Steps 9 through 12 cover the last leg, during which you should manage stress; use all assistance available; shed bad behaviors; and finally achieve success “with grace and dignity for all.” Debut author McFadden, a Maryland-based Christian minister and the founder and president of The Leadership Training Company, offers an inspiring vision and helpful tactics for finding meaning and one’s ultimate purpose in life. His admissions of his own challenges, such as giving up early on “one of [his] callings” to be a lawyer, make him a relatable voice, and never a lofty one. Although the book’s biblical references and mentions of one’s “creator” may not appeal to everyone, he does provide a motivating, forward-looking method that like-minded readers may consider when navigating their own life courses.

An empowering extended metaphor that yields an array of useful advice.

Pub Date: Dec. 27, 2007

ISBN: 978-0-595-43489-3

Page Count: 109

Publisher: iUniverse

Review Posted Online: Dec. 13, 2016

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Readers unfamiliar with the anecdotal material Greene presents may find interesting avenues to pursue, but they should...

MASTERY

Greene (The 33 Strategies of War, 2007, etc.) believes that genius can be learned if we pay attention and reject social conformity.

The author suggests that our emergence as a species with stereoscopic, frontal vision and sophisticated hand-eye coordination gave us an advantage over earlier humans and primates because it allowed us to contemplate a situation and ponder alternatives for action. This, along with the advantages conferred by mirror neurons, which allow us to intuit what others may be thinking, contributed to our ability to learn, pass on inventions to future generations and improve our problem-solving ability. Throughout most of human history, we were hunter-gatherers, and our brains are engineered accordingly. The author has a jaundiced view of our modern technological society, which, he writes, encourages quick, rash judgments. We fail to spend the time needed to develop thorough mastery of a subject. Greene writes that every human is “born unique,” with specific potential that we can develop if we listen to our inner voice. He offers many interesting but tendentious examples to illustrate his theory, including Einstein, Darwin, Mozart and Temple Grandin. In the case of Darwin, Greene ignores the formative intellectual influences that shaped his thought, including the discovery of geological evolution with which he was familiar before his famous voyage. The author uses Grandin's struggle to overcome autistic social handicaps as a model for the necessity for everyone to create a deceptive social mask.

Readers unfamiliar with the anecdotal material Greene presents may find interesting avenues to pursue, but they should beware of the author's quirky, sometimes misleading brush-stroke characterizations.

Pub Date: Nov. 13, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-670-02496-4

Page Count: 320

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: Sept. 13, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2012

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Clever and accessibly conversational, Manson reminds us to chill out, not sweat the small stuff, and keep hope for a better...

EVERYTHING IS F*CKED

A BOOK ABOUT HOPE

The popular blogger and author delivers an entertaining and thought-provoking third book about the importance of being hopeful in terrible times.

“We are a culture and a people in need of hope,” writes Manson (The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life, 2016, etc.). With an appealing combination of gritty humor and straightforward prose, the author floats the idea of drawing strength and hope from a myriad of sources in order to tolerate the “incomprehensibility of your existence.” He broadens and illuminates his concepts through a series of hypothetical scenarios based in contemporary reality. At the dark heart of Manson’s guide is the “Uncomfortable Truth,” which reiterates our cosmic insignificance and the inevitability of death, whether we blindly ignore or blissfully embrace it. The author establishes this harsh sentiment early on, creating a firm foundation for examining the current crisis of hope, how we got here, and what it means on a larger scale. Manson’s referential text probes the heroism of Auschwitz infiltrator Witold Pilecki and the work of Isaac Newton, Nietzsche, Einstein, and Immanuel Kant, as the author explores the mechanics of how hope is created and maintained through self-control and community. Though Manson takes many serpentine intellectual detours, his dark-humored wit and blunt prose are both informative and engaging. He is at his most convincing in his discussions about the fallibility of religious beliefs, the modern world’s numerous shortcomings, deliberations over the “Feeling Brain” versus the “Thinking Brain,” and the importance of striking a happy medium between overindulging in and repressing emotions. Although we live in a “couch-potato-pundit era of tweetstorms and outrage porn,” writes Manson, hope springs eternal through the magic salves of self-awareness, rational thinking, and even pain, which is “at the heart of all emotion.”

Clever and accessibly conversational, Manson reminds us to chill out, not sweat the small stuff, and keep hope for a better world alive.

Pub Date: May 14, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-06-288843-3

Page Count: 288

Publisher: Harper/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: April 1, 2019

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