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81 of 89 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ditch Survival Mode and Live an Extraordinary Life!
As a new mom, living in Survival Mode meant being late to everything, finding myself staying awake until 2 am on a regular basis; being too exhausted to enjoy my time with my son; letting exercise fall by the wayside; having to scramble last-minute to prepare every single meal; and accumulating boxes filled with unopened junk mail, random greeting cards and photos,...
Published 10 months ago by mocinha76

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119 of 143 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Unrealistic for most mothers.
I like reading about people's lives when they are interesting to read about, unfortunately a lot of the content of this book is about 'well I am good at this, and not good at that, so lets talk about what I am good at'. Its very much a pat on the back for the author and didn't really give me any suggestions for how to escape a real survival mode. Her breaking point came...
Published 9 months ago by Melanie J Evans


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81 of 89 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ditch Survival Mode and Live an Extraordinary Life!, January 21, 2014
This review is from: Say Goodbye to Survival Mode: 9 Simple Strategies to Stress Less, Sleep More, and Restore Your Passion for Life (Hardcover)
As a new mom, living in Survival Mode meant being late to everything, finding myself staying awake until 2 am on a regular basis; being too exhausted to enjoy my time with my son; letting exercise fall by the wayside; having to scramble last-minute to prepare every single meal; and accumulating boxes filled with unopened junk mail, random greeting cards and photos, recipes, receipts, and more.

Fortunately, a few months before I learned of her new book, Crystal Paine had already revolutionized my life by introducing me to freezer cooking. Then one day I learned she was putting together a launch team to read and review “Say Goodbye to Survival Mode”, and I could apply to join the team. Needless to say, I wanted in! A few days later, I was thrilled to learn I’d been selected!

Reading Crystal’s book is like having your own personal cheerleader! She is perhaps a more graceful version of my high school science teacher who would zip up to the front of the classroom to turn on a light bulb when we grasped a new concept, and enthusiastically declare “Far Out!”

I’ve had several light bulbs turn on as I’ve read. Here are a few:

- Stop Trying to Do it All. “Time doesn’t expand limitlessly. When I say yes to one thing, I must say no to something else. For example, if I choose to make getting up early a priority, I have to say no to staying up late on a regular basis.”

- Say Yes to the Best. “Instead of beating myself up over what I can’t do, I’m learning to appreciate, focus on, and exercise those areas where I have natural abilities. And I have found much joy in being who God has created me to be, not in trying to be someone else.”

- If You Aim at Nothing, You’ll Hit it Every Time. “We only have one life to live. In order to make the most of it and live intentionally and purposefully, we have to constantly reevaluate our lives.”

- Manage the Home Front. “Keep it simple….When I have a pretty good system for [cooking, housekeeping, and clutter management], it frees me up to focus my time energy on more important things, like my best stuff list.”

And my favorite…

- A Life Changed. “I didn’t have any amazing gifts or talents. I was pretty much just an average girl who got average grades and lived an average American life. But I wanted something more. I didn’t want to be content with average. So I started reading voraciously. I set my alarm to get up early. I set goals and worked toward them. I began investing every day thinking of what would matter most at the end of my life. All of those little things added up to a life changed.”

It’s been a long time since I’ve felt like I had something special to offer the world, or even my family for that matter. These words from Crystal helped me to realize that I don’t have to be born with a particular gift to live an extraordinary life. I just have to refuse to accept mediocrity, set goals, and invest one day at a time in what matters most, and my life WILL change! Yours will too.

Note: I received a free .pdf version of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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119 of 143 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Unrealistic for most mothers., February 3, 2014
This review is from: Say Goodbye to Survival Mode: 9 Simple Strategies to Stress Less, Sleep More, and Restore Your Passion for Life (Hardcover)
I like reading about people's lives when they are interesting to read about, unfortunately a lot of the content of this book is about 'well I am good at this, and not good at that, so lets talk about what I am good at'. Its very much a pat on the back for the author and didn't really give me any suggestions for how to escape a real survival mode. Her breaking point came from cancelling on a a girls afternoon with friends? She travels for work, and her husband does chores around the house? And she had time to write a book about it all? Her solution to feeling tired is to go to sleep earlier? Don't you think that if most people could do that, they would?

Some of her points are valid - goal setting and breaking tasks down are useful skills, but these things are common knowledge to people who are snowed under with the demands of work and home. Having cleaning lists and organising your household and finances on paper are also just part of the deal for most mothers I know. There wasn't anything groundbreakingly new in this book.

Although her journey may have felt difficult for her, but I don't think its a true reflection of what many people go through in their lives. I am also a mum who works long hours from home and I thought I would get a lot out of this book, however I was very dissappointed.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You might be survival mode, but there is a way out!, January 23, 2014
This review is from: Say Goodbye to Survival Mode: 9 Simple Strategies to Stress Less, Sleep More, and Restore Your Passion for Life (Hardcover)
Playing catch-up with a list a mile long, I found myself in survival mode. I know I didn’t plan for this destination, but my choices put me here. Instead of deciding what to do, I was putting out the next fire before another one started.

Caught in the rat race of life, I don’t always take the time to play that requested game with my son, paint my daughter’s nails after she’s asked every day for a week, or give complete attention to Miss 3′s long-winded story that really has no end. However, my children really need undivided attention, even if it is for 10 minutes.

Realizing I needed a change, I was thrilled when I was chosen as a launch team member for the release of Crystal Paine’s second book, Say Goodbye to Survival Mode: 9 Simple Strategies to Stress Less, Sleep More, and Restore Your Passion for Life.

Having loved Crystal’s first book, The Money Saving Mom’s Budget, as it met me where I was, I knew this second book was just what I needed.

This 230-page Say Goodbye to Survival Mode book is packed with Crystal’s personal story along with interviews and encouragement from others who have broken free from survival mode. As I read the scenarios, I could have easily substituted my name into many of their stories.

Realizing that I’m not alone in survival mode, I found the 9 simple strategies a way through the dark tunnel into a stress-free, manageable lifestyle.

9 Simple Strategies

Stop Trying to Do It All
Say Yes to the Best
If You Aim at Nothing, You’ll Hit It Every Time
Discipline Is Not a Bad Word
Be Intentional with Your Bank Account
Manage the Home Front
When You Feel Like a Failure
Yes, You can Make a Difference
Sometimes It Is about You
Embedded within the structure of these 9 strategies, each reader will find encouragement and practical solutions that can be implemented immediately. At the conclusion of each chapter is a “Get Practical” section designed with questions to help you apply the principles shared.

Though each reader will have her own favorites, I found the following 5 lessons and quotations my breakthrough to saying goodbye to survival mode:

1. How to become more self-disciplined

“I’d rather do a few things well, have my priorities in order, and enjoy life than to try and do two hundred things poorly and have a stressed-out, exhausted, passionless existence.”

The “Four C’s to Creating Margin” section outlines how to create empty space within our schedule. With extra time built-in, I have room for the sick child, the spontaneous trip to Chick-fil-A, and the unexpected phone call from a friend.

2. How to set and keep goals

“If you don’t know where you are going, you’ll never reach your destination.”

Finding goals a great tool to get from here to there, I loved the “Set SMART Goals” section. Using the word SMART, where each letter represents a word, Crystal shares how to create Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-Bound goals. Using these parameters, I get from the generic goal of “be more healthy” to the specific goal of “lose 1 pound each week.”

3. How to manage your time, money, and home

“At different times in your life, you’re going to need to put more energy and effort into some things while other things will need to be put on the back burner for the time being.”

As cleaning our household has been on the back burner for some time, I was able to keep up the surface cleaning because we limit clutter in our home. Lest you get the wrong idea, we have lots of stuff as opposed to Crystal’s minimalist lifestyle. However, everything has a place.

I enjoy removing unnecessary items from our home and found the “Four-week Guide to rid clutter from your home” section great because she suggests focusing on one type of room each week.

4. How to rediscover your passion and purpose for life

“It’s an indescribable feeling to invest your life in something that is much bigger than yourself.”

Whether you have a little or a lot, everyone can give something back. The “18 Creative Ways to Help Others” section gives specific recommendations to fit within our time constraints, budgets, and lifestyles.

5. How to experience less stress and more joy

“When you have a day when it seems like nothing gets done and you’re just going around and around in circles, remind yourself that tomorrow is a new day.”

With life whizzing by, the “Seven Habits that will Change your Life” section brought life back down to the basics. Establishing a pattern of habits will transform my way of living from surviving crises to intentional, meaningful decisions.
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124 of 151 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Needy Much?, February 8, 2014
This review is from: Say Goodbye to Survival Mode: 9 Simple Strategies to Stress Less, Sleep More, and Restore Your Passion for Life (Hardcover)
As a long-time reader of Crystal Paine's blog, Money Saving Mom, I felt honored when I was selected as a blogger to receive a digital copy of her book, for promotional purposes. I was so excited to read this book, as my current working, spiritual, and working relationships could use a bit of work, per se. I could not have been more disappointed with this book. I am writing this review under my husbands Amazon.com account.

I like reading about people's lives, within reason, but unfortunately the vast majority of the content within this book is seemingly very self-centered; I counted over three dozen passages about the author being exceptional at this, or lacking at that, and the rest was simply a very expensive brag session. There are so many quotes randomly placed throughout the book, and I have not seen so many oddly placed quotations since existential philosophy in college! Beyond this, the author declares her breaking point as the moment she had to cancel a luncheon with friends, which seems very odd. She also makes a point of saying she saves time by not having pets, canceling work engagements, not packing lunches for her husband, by skipping out on family functions, and that during periods where she travels for work her husband cleans their home. I felt as if saying, well duh, if I stopped all of daily chores I would have extra time to reflect on having people purchase my book as well. I also wondered how these guidelines played into her blog, where she religiously mentions the "Motivated Moms planner," and that she and friends hold each other accountable for performing the daily chores listed on the planner; oddly cleaning, cooking, and lunch packing are all listed on this planner. In addition, the authors declared that she does not oversee their families finances, as her husband is better at this act, yet tells women within this book that they should oversee their finances better. Beyond this, the author informs us that we all need adequate amounts of sleep, and my first thought while reading this book was, "fiddle dee dee, if I stopped cleaning, packing lunches, and relied on crockpot freezer cooking methods, I'd sleep like a baby, too!" This book is a constant contradiction.

Bear in mind, several of the authors points in regards to goal setting and breaking tasks down are useful skills are valid, but the point of nearly sixty pages of text could have been summed up as simply informing the reader to create small, attainable goals! There wasn't anything groundbreakingly new in this book, for most mothers, and women in general, have planned meals, organized shopping lists, and attended perfunctory activities since time began.

Although her journey may have felt difficult for her, it is no where close to being a true reflection of the needs for the vast majority of mothers in the country, this book has no mention of mothers needing increased levels of education, of being able to find self-help resources outside of a bookshop, or of being able to find those who can help them with a hand-up in lieu of a hand out! I work from home, study from home, care for my family, including my mother who suffers from dementia, I blog, cook, shop, organize, attend law school, and still have time to pack my husbands lunches; I want to read about Crystal, the woman who worked, blogged, and homeschooled while attending law school, not Crystal, wife to someone else following their dreams and goals!

This book would have been a good accompaniment to a Bible study or the like, not so much as a self-help book.

This book, its a bummer!
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Left me feeling like I need to be doing more in life, not less, March 30, 2014
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I'm really surprised this book has been reviewed so positively. I've been looking to simplify aspects of my life, so that I can spend more time and attention with my family. I feel like the tips and strategies outlined in the book actually promote doing more; albeit in a more intentional and organized manner. This book actually made me feel a little bad about myself. I walked away feeling like I am not doing enough. Though I don't think it is at all what the author intended, it felt like it was a statement of "look at all I am able to accomplish in my life with these strategies!"

There are definitely some suggestions that I found valuable, unfortunately it was so wrapped up in how to micromanage your life, that it left me feeling a little anxious.

I want a way to evaluate what really needs to be accomplished, so that I can be more calm and more present with the people and things I value in my life. It just didn't fit what I was looking for.
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40 of 50 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars If you read her blog, save yourself some time and money by NOT buying this book, February 2, 2014
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This review is from: Say Goodbye to Survival Mode: 9 Simple Strategies to Stress Less, Sleep More, and Restore Your Passion for Life (Hardcover)
I gave this book 3 stars because I felt like I had already read it before. I love the author's blog and have been reading it since 2009. While she has a lot of great ideas and strategies, I feel it was a waste for me to purchase this book. I also purchased her first book, "The Money Saving Mom's Budget", and I had the same feelings. It was a great book, but it came from a great blog. I would NOT recommend it to someone who reads her blog. If someone had never read her blog, I would recommend this book, and then I'd give it 4 or 5 stars.

Also, if you read reviews before you purchase items, like I do, by aware that many of the reviews on here are coming from people who were given free copies before they were released.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nothing New, August 11, 2014
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This had a lot of practical tips, but they were contradictory and seemed disorganized. The author's focus on how awesome she is was another distraction from any help she provided in the book. The author is young, has only been married ten years, yet seems to think she has arrived. She talks frequently about how she used to have trouble with something, but now she has it all figured out. The book was just ok. Just a mishmash of bits of advice we've all heard before and this gal's self-promotion. Three stars because some of the tips really are helpful. You just have to pick and choose carefully and skim selectively.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book for busy Mom's!, April 18, 2014
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This review is from: Say Goodbye to Survival Mode: 9 Simple Strategies to Stress Less, Sleep More, and Restore Your Passion for Life (Hardcover)
This is a book to keep and review periodically! Very excellent guidance for how to simplify your life. Very encouraging and motivating! I have read it once and plan on reading it again (probably every year) to encourage myself to implement Crystal's wonderful advice! Every busy mom should read this!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A GREAT book to get you back on track!, April 5, 2014
I think it's the case for most of us moms. At some point along the way between adding more kids to the family and trying to find a new normal we just plain old fall into survival mode! For some stages of life I think that is just fact for everyone, and that's ok, but it's not a place you want to stay!

If you have stayed their too long, however (like myself- as evidenced by the cover of my copy of this book!), then you could probably use a little bit of guidance for digging yourself out of that rut. That is where Say Goodbye to Survival Mode by Crystal Paine comes to the rescue! She breaks it down for you, piece by piece, from setting your priorities, to honing in your time management, to finances, to actually making it happen. She offers tools galore and lots of real life examples from not just herself but other moms in the trenches as well.

Crystal's humor and realism makes this process doable, even when it feels huge. She is a master of breaking things into bite-sized chunks so that REAL moms actually feel like they can do more than just wipe... substances... off children and keep everyone alive from one day to the next. And instead of just telling you how to do it she shows you how she did! I think that human example component is just so vital to learning! Just think of yourself as Crystal's apprentice on this no-more-survival-mode journey!

Don't read it alone!

When I started this book I got 3 chapters in and decided it was too great to read alone! So I began reading and working on this book with one of my dearest friends- Sarah from Simply Sarah. It has been an immense joy to meet with her over facetime or google hangout in the wee hours of the morning once a week with coffee in hand! I have adored working through this book with her because it has really made me stop and do the work that Crystal suggests instead of just reading over her fantastic ideas but never bringing them to reality. The accountability of meeting with Sarah has been an essential tool to my getting the most out of this book... and forcing me to get out of bed earlier in the morning. (Yes, my dear friend from across the country has seen me in a more haggard state than most of my IRL friends- and she still loves me!)

So, YES, I recommend this book! And more over I recommend reading it with a friend, near or far. Make a way and you'll be glad you did!
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome!!, January 23, 2014
This review is from: Say Goodbye to Survival Mode: 9 Simple Strategies to Stress Less, Sleep More, and Restore Your Passion for Life (Hardcover)
I really enjoyed Say Goodbye to Survival Mode by Crystal Paine. I've read all of Crystal's books and I'm a big fan of her blog, moneysavingmom.com and I've been reading it for years. This is a practical, how-to book that is written in such a great tone that many women will enjoy what she has to say, but also find the process of reading the book very enjoyable.

Product Details

Sometimes bloggers who publish books just re-publish their blog, and as a reader you feel like you're already read it. I didn't feel this way while reading the book even though I've read moneysavingmom.com every day for over three years now.

This really is a self-help book that combines a lot of different topics written by a business woman. Crystal Paine is a mom, but she's not just a regular mom, she is a very savvy, driven, shrewd, successful business woman. And, she's self-taught! I've followed her reading lists on her blog for a while and she reads a lot of business and time management books. This book is more of a self-help/business book than it is a "mom" book. However, if you take your job seriously, it will benefit you to implement business strategies in your home both with your finances and with your time.

I enjoy reading business and personal finance books and this is a very good one even though it looks, at first glance, that it would be about a less serious topic. This is a very well researched, honest book. You can feel the author's enthusiasm for her knowledge (on goal setting and time management.)

Crystal Paine represents a new type of entrepreneur (a young, work at home mom of many children, with goals and plans who looks like the girl next door.) I would not be surprised if her next book is about running her thriving business and charitable giving. I have a feeling that she's just getting started.

This is a very helpful, inspirational book. I found it encouraging and fun to read!

5 out of 5 stars. I got my hardcover, pre-release copy for free from Thomas Nelson Publishers which was awesome because I wanted to buy this book for myself anyway. This is a great, practical read for moms! I read this cover to cover over about 24 hours. It was that helpful!!
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