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on February 8, 2012
Take a good look at the cover. Now, truly, you've read the whole thing. Reads like a late night infomercial, and even includes a bunch of pitches to log on to the author's website for more tips. I laughed at myself for buying this book and the positive reviews that went with it. Trite and silly, I found it discouraging that an adult would write this book, let alone want to sell it as a real book to adults, and get it published. The author needs to develop his "forebearance" to forgo writing or drawing another book that obviously required zero will-power to put out.
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on January 30, 2009
Although I love the concept of this book, I think the book fell way short of its goal. There was too much "cutsie" and not enough information. The hard information of the book could have been stated in about one sentence: Your level of motivation to stick with something is determined by your level of desire to actually accomplish the goal.

Don't get me wrong, I do love the concept. I just think this was way too light on information.
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Jim Randel has published eight books entitled The Skinny On. All are clever, humorous, and entertaining. All teach vital need-to-know lessons in an informal, non-pedantic, concise, and engaging fashion by generally using drawings of stick people engaged in dialogue. This volume shows how people can improve their will power by self discipline. As in other books in the series, Randel shows how to develop willpower by giving his readers more than a hundred examples and quotes from famous successful people.
The stick figures in this volume, who serve as humorous examples of Randel's teachings, are a married couple. It is New Years and the husband wants to lose ten pounds. But how can he develop the discipline to do it when he loves to eat fattening foods such as marshmallows? How can he make sure that he will exercise? How can he control himself not to go overboard, eat too little or over-exercise? What should he do when he slips up and overeats or becomes distracted from his goals because of stress at work?
The wife wants to start a business, but she has to do several things before she can start, such as write up a plan for the bank so that the bank will lend her money. But she never did such a thing before and feels stymied. How can she develop the discipline to move ahead?
Among fifteen points and Randel suggests and explains are: set for yourself a clear, concrete, specific goal; divide the goal into manageable parts; and become totally committed.
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on January 17, 2012
This book is unprofessional and childish. In the market for literature on Self Discipline, this had the highest user ratings, so I gave it a try. I did not expect, however, a children's book. Half of the book is full of stick-figure images and there is a bad joke at least every other page. Perhaps this book would be valuable for a child or ultra-light reader but not so much for anyone who is looking for a comprehensive analysis of self-discipline. It is pseudoscientific, awkward, and poorly researched. Here is an example of an absurd lesson from the book:

"P.S. 'Desserts' spelled backwards is: 'stressed.'"

If that is the sort of humor or information of your intellectual level, then this book is for you. However, if you are a well-read intellectual and critical thinker, this book will fail to challenge you and do nothing but waste your time and money. It is the lightest of light reading.
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on May 30, 2010
I am what many would consider a classical cynic. I look at every event and consider and apply the worst possible outcome. I usually avoid doing things I've always wanted to do because I think it will be hard, or there will be a negative or undesirable outcome. One thing I will say from the offset is that, I realise how much I've been holding myself back. When I finished this book, I was literally overcome with goosebumps at how simple it all seems to turn things around for the better and to put it in one simple phrase; it just involves a positive mental attitude. I feel like I've been inspired to make a change instantly, but I know that if I just jump right in there, then I've not learned much from this.

Running through 15 tips on how to improve your willpower, this book adopts a casual and comic approach as to how YOU can improve YOUR willpower and ultimately achieve the things you have always wanted. It doesn't sugar-coat events or possibilities with the idea that the minute you adopt the positive mental attitude, everything will change for the better. It promotes the idea that gradually and consistently moving towards your goals is much better than thinking what if, even if you're faced with difficulties. Although I'm naturally quite a cynical person, due to my disability, I've developed a personal saying which is "Whenever there's an obstacle, there's always a way to overcome it"; and I do truly believe that. My problem is usually not being that bothered to work hard enough to do it.

Consider the old Homer Simpson saying "if something's hard to do, then it's not worth doing". This is me all over, and although I do believe there's always a way to get around an obstacle or to defeat it, my problem is having the willpower to really work at overcoming the more difficult life obstacles. I hope that I will be able to really take a lot from this book in the coming weeks and months. Talking from personal experience, I enrolled in university last year which was a big step for me. For the first few months I was on top of the world for making this massive change in my life, but gradually I have grown more and more negative and have began to think negatively as to whether I can really handle University life and studying a degree. When I begin my second year in September, I will really put the tips this book gave me into action and pray that I notice gradual changes in my overall motivation.

Let me put it this way. If this book got through to me, then it can get through to anyone.
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on July 14, 2009
This book is designed to give information to those busy people who don't have time to read more lengthy books. It contains a wealth of information in little space.

I don't know anyone keen on self improvement who hasn't moaned at one time or another, "If I just had more will power I could . . ." Sometimes it feels as if our willpower is won't power.

This book talks in detail about will power and how to get yourself in a better position to accomplish your goals. It is a startlingly different book - short but powerful chapters with stick figures illustrating the point they are making. Don't let the stick figures put you off-guard and make you think this book doesn't have content for grown-ups. It definitely does.

You will learn the 15 points for developing will power and self discipline. (and you will learn that discipline is not a dirty word). I work in the "self improvement" arena and I highly recommend it.
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on September 25, 2011
I give this book a 4 for substantive content alone. It deserves a 5 but I felt the Kindle readers should know that the PDF format makes it difficult to read on the Kindle. Thank God the book is short. I read it on my computer because the type is too small on the Kindle. It's a formatting issue that the publisher should address. But overall very informative. Just make sure you have the computer Kindle application. Enjoy!
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on June 10, 2011
For the price this book it is really kind of silly. It has very little and mostly obvious information that fails to teach or inspire anything. The author mentions having done extensive interviews with many important and successful people; however there is no mention of specific cases, names, stories or anything else. I understand that the book is meant to be a summary of findings, but to me if falls short by a mile. Perhaps it is written for 4th grade children, for adults I'd look for something a bit more insightful. Cute doesn't cut it, especially because you are paying money that could be spent on an actual real book.
Additionally, if you get the Kindle sample, be aware that it is not very representative of the book.
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on May 20, 2011
This book is a very quick read because it is dominated by comic book style cartoons. I think that causes the book to lose some punch - it's a little childish. Some of the quirky humor it tries isn't very funny and all in all, the effects of reading a book about stick figures is just a little weak.

There are some good ideas presented here and some good illustrations of the concepts.

However, KINDLE OWNERS NOTE: the book is largely a scanned PDF and so you cannot take notes, or highlight. I returned my copy because of this. I love highlights and don't like books that I cannot highlight in!

This is not a bad book. It's just a middle of the road motivational book that suffers from too much "clever" humor and really lame stick figure illustrations.
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on May 9, 2010
I used to be a quitter, many years ago. I would quit jobs I didn't like, I quit college, I quit everything. When I was in my mid-twenties, I turned it all around with the power of willpower. I would tell myself, just do it (like NIKE) and the motivation will come. Often, the motivation never did come, but look what all I had accomplished by just doing it! It was like I had tapped into some superhuman force.

This book is an enjoyable, breezy read on the subject of Willpower. It's the perfect book to get you motivated to turn your attitude around.

I have to share my favorite excerpt from this book:
"...every single person who achieves something of value struggles and at times thinks about quitting. The succeeder is most often simply the person who won't quit."

This is so true! It always amazes me at how many folks get jealous of others and downright angry that things don't work out for them, yet most of them put zero effort toward bettering their situations. Self-discipline is the key to all good things in life, including happiness. When you realize you don't "need" a new car, then you don't care that you don't have one and once you have the money to buy one, you save it because you realize investing in a vehicle is a waste of money if you already have an operable vehicle. I believe that self-discipline is the key to wealth. This book will help to give you a shove in the right direction.

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy for review.
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