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57 Reviews
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41 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It is never too late to be creative and live your dreams
Pushing sixty and laid off from my last job of a decade made me put things into perspective. I started out at my last company (over a decade ago) able to be creative and resolve tense situations and technical snafus with total carte blanche. But due to several company merges, the last five years found my creativity shut down in lieu of taking direction (with no input...
Published on May 3, 2011 by Amazon Customer

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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars One star or five stars, depends
As a pro trader who read a lot of books on creativity, self improvement and contrarian thinking/trading, I found the author's ideas familiar, but not his interesting presentation through extensive and interesting use of graphs, pictures and page designs. I dare not recommend it to any serious self help book reader or creative professional. Nevertheless, it's a good choice...
Published on April 1, 2008 by ServantofGod


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41 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It is never too late to be creative and live your dreams, May 3, 2011
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This review is from: Whatever You Think, Think the Opposite (Paperback)
Pushing sixty and laid off from my last job of a decade made me put things into perspective. I started out at my last company (over a decade ago) able to be creative and resolve tense situations and technical snafus with total carte blanche. But due to several company merges, the last five years found my creativity shut down in lieu of taking direction (with no input allowed) for day to day operations. I turned my brain off and just waited as the layoffs got closer and closer to me. Now that I am free again, I found this book a great help in kick starting my brain. After reading it I decided I would take a "Roman Holiday" - just spend the summer doing what I want to do before I choose a "job" or "career" to go back to.

I am taking all sorts of classes - music, writing, painting, investing (so I do not waste any money and do not stress out about having the summer off), meditation, tai chi.

I read through this book once. Now I am taking a page a day, and journaling my own thoughts to what I have read. What I am finding out is that I am birthing a different person from a month ago, a year ago, a decade ago. And that new person will have something fun and wonderful to offer in the new work I choose that brings me joy.

I highly recommend this book if you feel your creativity has abandoned you. Your mojo has not left you - it is just waiting for you to awaken it from a long nap and for you to start playing together again.
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31 of 35 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Zen take, July 29, 2006
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This review is from: Whatever You Think, Think the Opposite (Paperback)
Arden's second book, like his first, is a zen take on your life in business. He does not tell you what to think as much as he tells you want he thinks and then challenges you to react, to think, to imagine. Great story on steady eddie v. reckless erica and how playing it safe is the least safe thing to do. Forces you to wonder which you are. His advice is anything but typical. To creative types he says don't worry about the medium you want , focus on the money you'll make---"it's honest." The juxtaposing of ideas with art and photos is well done---I liked the ask for a slap in the face advice(ask others to tell you what you did wrong, not what you did right) with the photo of a woman wincing at the slap to come. Why not 5 stars? If I read him right, it'd be an insult.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars One star or five stars, depends, April 1, 2008
As a pro trader who read a lot of books on creativity, self improvement and contrarian thinking/trading, I found the author's ideas familiar, but not his interesting presentation through extensive and interesting use of graphs, pictures and page designs. I dare not recommend it to any serious self help book reader or creative professional. Nevertheless, it's a good choice for a 30 minute leisure reading. On the other hand, I read this right after the author's another book "It's not how good you are. It's...". The two books are very similar and so I had written two nearly identical reviews for each. Pardon me!

p.s. Below please find some of my favorite passages for your reference.

Salomon Brothers met with prospective clients not once a month or once a day, but three times a day. That is unreasonable. But it works. Most people are reasonable, that's why they only do reasonably well.pg 42

A young man worked as a runner in an advertising firm. One day he said to his manager, "I'm leaving. I'm going to be a drummer." The manager said, "I didnt know you played the drums." He replied, "I dont, but I'm going to." A few years later that young man played in a band with Eric Clapton and Jack Bruce...He became what he wanted to become before he knew he could do it. He had a goal. pg 62

Rememberwhat Jean Luc Godard said: It's not where you take things from - it's where you take them to. pg 92

An interviewer with a wooden leg said to Frank Zappa, "With your long hair, from where I am sitting you could be a woman." He replied, "From where I am sitting you could be a table." pg 126
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19 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great coffee table book!, January 8, 2007
This book caught my attention at SF-MOMA. Ever since I bought it, it has grabbed the attention of all friends who visit me. It's a quick read where each page you flip has a certain controversial wisdom. I guess everything about the book screams that Paul Arden is practicing what he is preaching. It is easy to disagree with every conclusion he draws, but that's the very point of the book that conventional wisdom must be questioned.

Paul Arden also fits the profile of successful ad gurus. These personalities would trade off controversy over correctness any day. Just by engaging you in an argument about a certain topic, they have achieved their purpose. That of making you have an opinion about that topic and not be indifferent.

I wouldn't live my life by this book. But certainly flip a page every once in a while to review my life.

Makes it a good coffee table book too. A person who spends 60 seconds would stand to gain something, as would a person who spends 60 minutes.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars ahhh, ok., September 24, 2008
This review is from: Whatever You Think, Think the Opposite (Paperback)
I bought this book because it was required reading for a class. It's pretty common sense stuff. It's alright, but if you can borrow it from a friend, go that route.
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11 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ONLY the rare have VISION...all the rest have Tele-VISION...Paul Arden's a rare breed!, December 10, 2006
This review is from: Whatever You Think, Think the Opposite (Paperback)
Dare to Think The Opposite is more than you Think...

This isn't the first Paul Arden book I've read through and examined for review. The good news hopefully is it won't be the last Paul writes.

This book cuts to the gut of considering doing things differently without being apprehensive. And in less time than you could read this whole review backwards you can get through his new book. I think that's also what makes the books written by Arden interesting. Their short on paper but long on ideas. Great for you if you're always complaining about not having enough time to get through a good book.

I think the only way to put mileage on an idle mind is to read books that make you say huh! "I never thought of it like that". This makes a book well worth the reading. Benjamin Franklin said in Poor Richard's Almanack..."Reading makes a full man--Meditation a profound man--Discourse a clear man."

So are you afraid of applying simple rules in the reverse? Do you often just go with the status quo or follow common patterns or guidelines for thinking? If you're not afraid to think in the opposite or if the following title with the words backwards doesn't bother you than you may be well on your way to something worth imagining differently. "WHATEVER YOU THINK Think the Opposite" is worth your time.

The book opens up on page 7 with a Flop...and are you willing to take one and try an idea that goes against reason?

In this day and age how willing are you to be unfashionable? Well get ready to put on your high heeled sneakers as you prepare to take another drastic right turn in a left turn lane which seems to spin out of control on pg 16 & 17 in order to jump-start your thinking about "The Height of Unfashion" and how taking risk to make a decision that's unfashionable often leads you to the next unpredictable road to greatness.

"The Age of Unreason", and "There is no right point of view" both make you think about perspective and how yours could be screwing you up from seeing the things you're missing. Now if you're not into progressive thinking don't try this book. Again I think Paul Ardens on to something and the cost of the book is worth taking a plunge to gain some great increase in your imagination. I got a lot out of the book. In this generation you need VISION not Tele-VISION to make it. As you can see I like the book and you will too!

Your Servant,

Deremiah, *CPE
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 20 minutes to read, a lifetime to master (or the opposite? ;-), June 25, 2009
This review is from: Whatever You Think, Think the Opposite (Paperback)
It took me about an hour of slow reading to devour the book. It'll probably take me some time to master the principles.

In that sense, it is like Tao Te Ching.

So here is a review in accord with the spirit of the book:

Instead of spending your time reading books from Malcolm Gladwell, read what Paul Arden has to say about life, business, success and failure.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting Design and Unique Messages, February 28, 2009
By 
K. Scott Proctor (Wilmington, DE USA) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
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This review is from: Whatever You Think, Think the Opposite (Paperback)
This is an interesting and unique book. I found the book to be as much about design as it is about content. While somewhat light in terms of any plot or direction, the "snippets" found throughout the book do make you think. While you may not agree with all the "snippets," the book is worth a quick read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How to Live Life On Your Own Terms!, December 25, 2010
This review is from: Whatever You Think, Think the Opposite (Paperback)
I just got this for Christmas (I'm an Arden fan but somehow this book eluded me until now).
It's truly remarkable and is for anyone who actually has a brain and isn't afraid to use it, to stand alone, to stand apart, to follow their passion without apology.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Thinking about thinking, April 10, 2006
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This review is from: Whatever You Think, Think the Opposite (Paperback)
I was given this book as a gift from one of the Creative Directors at the agency I work at. The type is large, the appearance plain, the paragraphs short. It took me no longer than 25minutes to read the entire book, but the thinking Arden presents I continually go back to, to ponder.

Some of them are so great, that you really have to stop your reading and think about what he Arden is trying to say. You'll find yourself analysing his short thoughts in the hope that they will guide you some day in your own thought processes. He comes across a little brash on occasions, and I didn't agree with all the points made in this book, but he hits the mark more times than not, ands when he does, it's a brilliant lesson for anyone wanting to, or currently is working in creative services.

The book is filled with simple and witty insights aimed at challenging the reader to get serious about tackling problems. Not just in business, but also in life. He highlites (with the aid of real life examples and quotes) the importance of risk, justifies the things that are right about the wrong decisions, image, and having confidence in taking chances. There's more, but it's basically summed up on the first page... "It's the wrong way to think, but the right way to win."

It's a quick read in a small neat package. Which works well as a handy little reference you can pick up for some pocket inspiration. Overall, a great tool for the mind.
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Whatever You Think, Think the Opposite
Whatever You Think, Think the Opposite by Paul Arden (Paperback - March 10, 2006)
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