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on December 30, 2005
Advice of both the common sense variety and the kind based on bitter experience is offered here in this pocket-sized volume. Non-controversial, cutesy-but-true helpful hints make up the bulk of its alleged 511 suggestions.

A random sampling of these spattered tidbits includes:

Learn to listen. Advice sometimes knocks very softly.

Be courteous to everyone.

Read to your children.

Be enthusiastic about the success of others.

Be brave. Even if you're not, pretend to be. No one can tell the difference.

Keep secrets.

Never criticize the person who signs your paycheck.

Lie on your back and look at the stars.

And one I especially liked:

Evaluate yourself by your own standards, not by someone else's.

So as you can see, these are nice little gems of wisdom. Not Confucius-level material, perhaps, but I doubt there's anyone who can't find something to grin over, agree with, or be improved by, all for less than ten bucks.
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There are literally dozens of these little books, or little books like this one around today. You can seem them on many a desk of offices across the country. Most of them are pretty good at best, and rather mundane at worse. This one though is quite a few notches above most of the pack. H. Jackson Brown Jr. has given us over 500 (511 to be exact), short bits of wisdom in the form of little one liners. I've read them all and to be frank, actually learned much from most of them and was reminded of a lot of things that have been pushed to the back of my mind over the years. These are little thoughts and zaps of wisdom that simply make your life more pleasing to live and most of them make you smile and feel a bit better. Little things like "floss your teeth everyday," sort of reminds me of my dad. Little things, yes, but don't all the little things all add up in our lives to make a whole? This is a great gift or a great buy for yourself. You will be richer for having read it.
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on July 11, 2003
This book is just wonderful for making you feel warm and fuzzy all over about how simple life could be if only you simplified and got back to the basics. The instructions are useful and will make you a better person. This is better then 99% of the motivational and self-help books out there. Life a simple and honorable life, and this book will help.
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on September 8, 2004
My sister had this book sitting on her coffee table. Whenever I was over her house I couldn't resist picking it up. As the rest of the family was interacting with each other, I would be pouring over H. Jackson Brown's practical words of wisdom.

The genesis of this book is a wonderful and heart-warming story. When the author's son was heading off to college, Brown decided to jot down a few words of wisdom to help his son through his college years. He typed it up and presented it to his son as they dropped him off at his dorm. A few days later his son called to express his appreciation of this "best gift ever".

The theme of these little instructions can be summed up by saying, "Be responsible, be positive and be appreciative." Still, you have to love the humor, joy, and practicality of each one. Some of my favorites are: No. 274 "Leave everything a little better than you found it." No.503 "Be alert for opportunities to show praise and appreciation." And No. 30 "Never buy a house without a fireplace." (Oops! Too late.)

Finally, to everyone who enjoyed this book I would encourage you to read another book of wisdom, The Book of Proverbs. Its words of wisdom are even better. (After all, Instruction No. 115 is " Give yourself a year and read the Bible cover to cover.")
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on July 17, 1998
This is an easy to pick up and read for one minute or read the entire book. I love to use it as a graduation gift for my students. They say it gives them all the things I have been teaching them over the years in one compact little book.
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on January 2, 2002
This little booklet is chock-full of one or two line passages of advice worthy of anyone's consideration. You've no doubt heard a few of these common-sense gems while most will be new discoveries.
I highly recommend this book as a great gift for the young adult reaching a milestone in their lives or for anyone that could use a few good ideas that will truly help them live happier and more rewarding lives. No doubt about it!
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on August 5, 2005
All of us have days when all we can do is put one foot in front of the other and make it through the day. I have kept this on my coffee table for years, along with several other books of inspiration. It is better than a cup of coffee - a true spiritual "pick me up". I say "Thank you" to the author for taking some of my tough days and turning them around for me!
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on October 20, 1998
I picked up the book while staying in a Bed & Breakfast in the Napa Valley and began to read. It's little sayings were so simple, yet, meaningful. I had to find a copy. Glad I finnaly did!
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on October 19, 1998
I received this as a gift from someone I do charity work with. At first I thought it was kind of hokey. But when you read this it makes great sense. Its short, bulleted advice. "Always flush the urinal with your elbow". Makes great sense once you reflect on it. "Send thank you notes promptly". I now do these things. Worthwhile reading.
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on June 30, 2006
I had previously purchased this book several years ago. As a former high school teacher I shared the "One" line notes with my students. This sharing became a routine my students looked forward to see when I posted them. With that in mind, I purchased a copy for my granddaughter for a graduation present.

After this purchase, Amazon informed me of the book that contained the first three editions of Life's Little Instructions. I slso bought tha edition.
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