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Fearless at Work: Timeless Teachings for Awakening Confidence, Resilience, and Creativity in the Face of Life's Demands Paperback – November 13, 2012

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Fearless at Work: Timeless Teachings for Awakening Confidence, Resilience, and Creativity in the Face of Life's Demands + Awake at Work: 35 Practical Buddhist Principles for Discovering Clarity and Balance in the Midst of Work's Chaos + The Mindful Leader: Awakening Your Natural Management Skills Through Mindfulness Meditation
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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Expanding on the theme of meditation as a conduit to professional and personal fulfillment that he established in his first two books (Awake at Work, 2004; Mindful Leader, 2008), Carroll focuses here on developing fearlessness, an approach to life and the work we do characterized by “delight and courage.” Here, the author bases the framework of his book around slogans, catchy phrases like “Command gracefully” and “Be, see, do,” that are distillations of broader philosophical concepts Carroll both discusses at greater length and encourages his reader to use as meditational focal points. Capitalizing on his experience working in the finance and publishing industries and on his work as a meditation teacher, Carroll presents ideas from a range of Buddhist traditions and Eastern philosophies in a manner that is easy to understand, particularly for the more business-minded reader. Those looking to apply a spiritual approach to their work life without delving too deeply into Buddhist teachings will find a straightforward method to doing so here. --Taina Lagodzinski

Review

“Valuable lessons in real connection for the ‘Facebook generation,’ Fearless at Work offers practical guidance for taming our minds and approaching work—and life—with confidence and humor. An essential resource for reshaping our modern day approach to livelihood.”—Deborah Dugan, CEO, (RED)


“Michael Carroll is among the wisest, sharpest, and most skillful individuals I have ever known. Utterly trustworthy, profound, and pragmatic, this new book expresses in beautiful language how to use Buddhist principles to transform our work life into a source of confidence, goodness, and happiness.”—Susan Piver, author of The Wisdom of a Broken Heart

“Michael Carroll’s Fearless at Work is a valuable book for our time. It is an infusion of intelligence and deep sanity into a subject that, for many, has become a daily experience of relative madness. Michael seems to effortlessly harmonize his mature understanding of Buddhist teachings and practice with the everyday—and very real—challenges of life and livelihood. His message is provocative and serious, yet lighthearted, in the lively teaching style of his teacher Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. Michael’s many years of study and deep experience in both Buddhist practice and the workplace come shining forth in these pages.”—Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Sensei, Abbot, Fire Lotus Temple, Zen Center of New York City 

“Michael Carroll helps me to be aware not only of what I’m doing at work but also how I am doing it—and most importantly, how I am in the midst of it all. Approaching livelihood with this kind of awareness is exactly what we need in the modern day workplace because, as Fearless at Work makes clear, being delightfully courageous in what we do makes all the difference.”—Barry Boyce, Editor-in-Chief, Mindful.org

“Neuroscience continues to show how mindfulness awareness practice promotes health and well-being—and, as a longtime Buddhist practitioner and former executive, Michael shows us a path for rediscovering our natural fearlessness and for learning to trust our true being. Fearless at Work can make a big difference in your work and life.”—Yi-Yuan Tang, PhD, Director of Texas Tech University Neuroimaging Institute and Presidential Endowed Chair in Neuroscience 

Fearless at Work tackles the challenge of spiritual development in an extraordinary setting—the workplace—while focusing on the greatest disabler in that domain: fear. The book offers valuable guidance for developing a personal meditative practice in order to be fully present for the people we serve as leaders and colleagues, so vital in these times of dramatic change in our shared global workplace. Fearless at Work is a hugely valuable guide for spiritual practitioners at work!”—Richard Bowles, PhD, Former Chief Ethics and Compliance Officer, Merck & Co.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Shambhala; 1 edition (November 13, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1590309146
  • ISBN-13: 978-1590309148
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 7.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #73,049 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Leann on December 4, 2012
Format: Paperback
I just finished reading Michael Carroll's book, Fearless at Work, on a Sunday night, so I really should have been more aware of how my Monday morning return to the office would go.

I enjoyed savoring Carroll's book. Fearless at Work is based on 37 mind-training slogans known as lojong. These are used to help train the mind and help you re-frame situations and gain clarity. While I have studied lojong before and knew a few by heart, I was overjoyed to have real life examples for each of these slogans. This made his teachings very easy to remember when I had to quickly recall how to bring more mindfulness into my office.

I had the opportunity to put this to the test first thing Monday morning. I had an email from an angry customer, stating that the newest reports were wrong and she had already scheduled a conference call (which included our directors) to discuss the situation. Normally, my stomach would clench up, I would grit my teeth and my mind would spin off into a million different scenarios of ways to defend myself. I knew I could prove that this report was exactly what had been asked for and it was this person's lack of input in previous meetings that caused this entire situation, and she was actually at fault.

Suddenly, my mind remembered Carroll's words in the book -"Discover the jewel of fearless abundance." While at first glance this saying may seem inappropriate to the situation, Carroll's words rang loudly in my mind: "The uncertainty that has been bewildering us is, in fact, the very freedom that we have been looking for. We have blinded ourselves with cowardice and overlooked the fact that we have no need for assurances and that our groundlessness is delightfully awake and free.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By M. L Lamendola VINE VOICE on November 18, 2012
Format: Paperback
Pick 100 people at random, and ask them if they are happy with their jobs. Probably few are. Most feel unfulfilled and underappreciated. Ask them if office conflicts leave them drained, and most will say yes. In fact, many people feel downright powerless at work. Yet, the typical white collar worker spends 50 or more hours in this condition.

Yet some will tell you they are happy. Even if their boss is a jerk. Some will tell you those conflicts didn't drain them, but helped them to understand.

The difference isn't because one workplace is better than the other, though that is often true and often a contributing factor. The difference is in how you handle it. An example of my own personal experience follows this review.

Why do people slave away for 50, 60, or 70 hours a week? There's a great example in this book, and I like the way Michael explained it. In a word, it's fear. When you allow someone to control you by fear, you do not gain that person's respect. People who are afraid to tell the boss, "I'm not going to slave away here 12 hours a day" because they might not get the boss's approval and thus not receive a (meaningless) promotion are fooling themselves. Because the boss sees how weak you are, you don't have the boss' respect anyhow.

As Michael explains, sometimes you have to "let it break." If things are so mismanaged where you work that somehow it's on your back to carry things, your sacrifice is actually meaningless. The solution is to fix the management problem, not sacrifice your mental and physical health. But almost everyone goes the sacrifice route out of fear of something presumably worse, such as failure. As Michael points out, letting a flawed system fail isn't necessarily a bad thing. Sometimes, it's exactly what needs to happen.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mark Hurwich on December 31, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In most companies, chances are you work in an environment so steeped in fear you're not even fully aware of it. And, don't think there's much you can do about it.

Well, there is. And it doesn't require you to change your boss, your company, the country's tax structure, or anything else in the environment around you.

It does, however, require you to be open to how you experience the work place...and to have the courage to engage the things that make us afraid as opportunities for growth.

With me so far? But wondering how a book can do that?

Like Awake at Work: 35 Practical Buddhist Principles for Discovering Clarity and Balance in the Midst of Work's Chaos, Fearless at Work enables this shift through a series of slogans. You can read the book cover to cover, but it's easier once you've read the initial chapters to just pick a slogan at random for the day: read it, let it percolate. Do that, and you'll find the day unfolding in a different way. What would have been upsetting might now occur as interesting, amusing, an opportunity to do something you couldn't have before, etc. ...or not; it doesn't always work that way, but maybe it will the next day. Each chapter has a different slogan, illustrated in a charming, perspective-shifting way. The chapters are short and easy to read and add a LOT to the slogan once you're read them--kind of like an Aesop's Fable's experience.

"Don't Count on It" is a good example. Neat slogan...but what does it mean? Think about how many of us keep score, and how score-oriented our world is. But at best, scores are a proxy for the real thing...
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