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YOU KNOW BEST

10 RULES TO ELEVATE YOUR LEADERSHIP POWER

A valuable rubric emphasizing self-advocacy and self-accountability in career-building.

Leadership coach Dawkins offers advice for taking charge of your career in this self-help guide.

The author describes her book as “an invitation to curate the best version of yourself while building influence in fast-paced organizations.” The text is organized into four sections outlining a total of 10 rules and accompanying skills to achieve such curation. Each chapter begins with a vignette from the career of a fictional character named Madison Hopeton, described as “fictional accounts of real events that have happened in the workplace.” Dawkins covers the necessary abilities to “read the room” to glean what is not overtly spoken; to own or learn from your mistakes even if you “dodged a bullet” and avoided consequences; and to “advocate for yourself”; the author includes an exhortation to “say it out loud” rather than leave self-advocacy unspoken. Dawkins counsels the reader to respond professionally even when others “fall short,” to expect that unfair/bad things will happen that are outside of their control, and to understand that being a “workplace savior” who can fix things won’t always be appreciated. Other sections emphasize embracing your self-worth and accepting the positive feedback and growth opportunities that may come your way; finding a work-life balance, practicing self-care, and learning to say no. The author’s assertions about her own successful career, including, “I refused to wait for a leader or organization to see my potential. If a company did not invest in my career trajectory, I would find opportunities elsewhere,” offer powerful testimony in support of focusing on the self in advancing one’s career. The reader may wish for more advice and illustrative scenarios, such as how Madison might respond to specific negative feedback in addition to accepting praise. Overall, however, this is a worthy primer to ponder.

A valuable rubric emphasizing self-advocacy and self-accountability in career-building.

Pub Date: May 10, 2023

ISBN: 9798987581308

Page Count: 196

Publisher: Better Equipped Solutions

Review Posted Online: May 3, 2023

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GREENLIGHTS

A conversational, pleasurable look into McConaughey’s life and thought.

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All right, all right, all right: The affable, laconic actor delivers a combination of memoir and self-help book.

“This is an approach book,” writes McConaughey, adding that it contains “philosophies that can be objectively understood, and if you choose, subjectively adopted, by either changing your reality, or changing how you see it. This is a playbook, based on adventures in my life.” Some of those philosophies come in the form of apothegms: “When you can design your own weather, blow in the breeze”; “Simplify, focus, conserve to liberate.” Others come in the form of sometimes rambling stories that never take the shortest route from point A to point B, as when he recounts a dream-spurred, challenging visit to the Malian musician Ali Farka Touré, who offered a significant lesson in how disagreement can be expressed politely and without rancor. Fans of McConaughey will enjoy his memories—which line up squarely with other accounts in Melissa Maerz’s recent oral history, Alright, Alright, Alright—of his debut in Richard Linklater’s Dazed and Confused, to which he contributed not just that signature phrase, but also a kind of too-cool-for-school hipness that dissolves a bit upon realizing that he’s an older guy on the prowl for teenage girls. McConaughey’s prep to settle into the role of Wooderson involved inhabiting the mind of a dude who digs cars, rock ’n’ roll, and “chicks,” and he ran with it, reminding readers that the film originally had only three scripted scenes for his character. The lesson: “Do one thing well, then another. Once, then once more.” It’s clear that the author is a thoughtful man, even an intellectual of sorts, though without the earnestness of Ethan Hawke or James Franco. Though some of the sentiments are greeting card–ish, this book is entertaining and full of good lessons.

A conversational, pleasurable look into McConaughey’s life and thought.

Pub Date: Oct. 20, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-593-13913-4

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Crown

Review Posted Online: Oct. 27, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2020

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CALL ME ANNE

A sweet final word from an actor who leaves a legacy of compassion and kindness.

The late actor offers a gentle guide for living with more purpose, love, and joy.

Mixing poetry, prescriptive challenges, and elements of memoir, Heche (1969-2022) delivers a narrative that is more encouraging workbook than life story. The author wants to share what she has discovered over the course of a life filled with abuse, advocacy, and uncanny turning points. Her greatest discovery? Love. “Open yourself up to love and transform kindness from a feeling you extend to those around you to actions that you perform for them,” she writes. “Only by caring can we open ourselves up to the universe, and only by opening up to the universe can we fully experience all the wonders that it holds, the greatest of which is love.” Throughout the occasionally overwrought text, Heche is heavy on the concept of care. She wants us to experience joy as she does, and she provides a road map for how to get there. Instead of slinking away from Hollywood and the ridicule that she endured there, Heche found the good and hung on, with Alec Baldwin and Harrison Ford starring as particularly shining knights in her story. Some readers may dismiss this material as vapid Hollywood stuff, but Heche’s perspective is an empathetic blend of Buddhism (minimize suffering), dialectical behavioral therapy (tolerating distress), Christianity (do unto others), and pre-Socratic philosophy (sufficient reason). “You’re not out to change the whole world, but to increase the levels of love and kindness in the world, drop by drop,” she writes. “Over time, these actions wear away the coldness, hate, and indifference around us as surely as water slowly wearing away stone.” Readers grieving her loss will take solace knowing that she lived her love-filled life on her own terms. Heche’s business and podcast partner, Heather Duffy, writes the epilogue, closing the book on a life well lived.

A sweet final word from an actor who leaves a legacy of compassion and kindness.

Pub Date: Jan. 24, 2023

ISBN: 9781627783316

Page Count: 176

Publisher: Viva Editions

Review Posted Online: Feb. 6, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2023

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