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Zen and the Art of Making a Living: A Practical Guide to Creative Career Design Paperback – August 25, 2009


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Zen and the Art of Making a Living: A Practical Guide to Creative Career Design + How to Find the Work You Love + The Tao of Abundance: Eight Ancient Principles for Abundant Living
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 608 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books; Revised edition (August 25, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 014311459X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0143114598
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 7.5 x 1.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (59 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #61,040 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

The bad old days of multiple-choice-test career counseling are over. It takes more than a #2 pencil and a computer to find your life's work, as career consultant Laurence G. Boldt tells us in Zen and the Art of Making a Living, a hefty but lighthearted tome that will help you find yourself and your place in the world. Boldt is quite up-front about it, though: it's a long, hard journey to get there. But his uplifting prose and liberal doses of inspirational quotes from wise men and women provide support for the weary traveler. Indeed, in between learning how to find the kind of work that strikes the right chord for you, figuring out what skills and talents you'll need to succeed at it, and righteously persisting until you get your reward, you may find lapses and stumbling blocks you hadn't expected--but Boldt has seen them all and finds the right words at the right time to keep you moving. Like a traditional career book, Zen and the Art of Making a Living includes résumé advice and worksheets for narrowing down and sticking with your goals; however, it takes off from there to guide the reader on a quest for spiritual fulfillment through work, something you won't find elsewhere. This updated edition contains plenty of Internet-related information and other resources unavailable in 1990 and is invaluable for anyone concerned about his or her future in the world of work. --Rob Lightner --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Laurence G. Boldt is a writer, career consultant, and lifetime student of Eastern philosophies, with more than a decade of experience helping people shape their dreams into practical realities. He is the bestselling author of Zen and the Art of Making a Living, How to Find the Work You Love, and Zen Soup. He lives in Santa Barbara, California..

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Customer Reviews

The second part focuses on choosing a career path best suited to one's talents and preferences.
Ravendas
From well-written essays to thought through exercises, this book will help anyone re-think their work life and enable them to make positive changes.
"kelloggvalerie"
When I started reading this book, at the recommendation of a good friend, I knew that I would take the time to finish it.
FirstGenProfess

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

54 of 54 people found the following review helpful By Jeremy Garber on May 10, 2001
Format: Paperback
After an unsuccessful and frustrating career as a cog in the corporate wheel, I took some time off, bought this book, and sat down with a pen. I came away with much more than I expected. The book's exhaustive charts, lists and essays helped me to focus my skills and desires into self-reflection, to figure out who I really was and what I wanted to do. The second half of the book is filled with information on grant-writing, government aids, and other practical tools to help you realize your dreams. If you don't want to support McWorld, let this book lead you down the path to realizing your full potential.
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56 of 57 people found the following review helpful By Stef Maruch on June 4, 2000
Format: Paperback
I read the 1993 edition of this book six years ago. I agree with other reviewers that it's not a quick action oriented book for someone who wants a job now. It's an entire philosophy of living. The reason I'm giving it 5 stars is that (1) doing the exercises deeply helped me figure out where I wanted to eventually go with my work choices; (2) these insights are just as fresh with me today as they were when I was reading and working with the book -- and I find that quality in a book extremely rare.
Turning the insights into action is an ongoing life project for me. It didn't immediately transform my life but it showed a path that made sense the way no other life/work guide has.
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60 of 64 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 28, 1996
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you're lost in any way this book is a treasure chest
of help, read it all the way though. If you're not it still is because parts of it will keep those who know why they are on the planet reaffirmed.. I was very lost and took three weeks off and read it up to the point
where you go out and test your decision. Best thing I ever did.
Now I'm reading how to best follow through. I plan on keeping
this book around for a long, long time. It's like a manual for life, the game of life.
framed in acts like a play and sprinkled with hundreds of great quotes.
Einstien, to Cambell, to Hui Neng grace it's pages with Boldt
sythesizing it all into a wonderful stream of wise advice.
Life is an art, and a game, and to serve is paramount.

It's one of those books that makes you wish everyone HAD to read it, and what a nice world it would be if they did.

If Quest for the Holy Grail had a manual on how to search and find your own personal Grail, and do it in a honest and healthy way, this is it.
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29 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Ravendas on January 9, 2001
Format: Paperback
This is an excellent, in-depth book on following your bliss to find the career which best suits you. Though it is a book geared towards the career search, it is also great for learning how to find happiness in your current job as well as life in general. This is not a "quick-fix" career guide that one can just skim over and find the perfect job. It is a guide for looking within oneself to find the ideal mesh of talent and happiness and finding a job (or creating one) that suits one best.
The first portion of the book covers one's personal quest for happiness and satisfaction with life, using not only Zen principles, but wisdom from many different spiritual and secular paths. It helps one discover how to find the artist and hero within and use one's talents to find the career that will provide the most satisfaction and happiness. Relevant quotes and affirmations are liberally included within the text.
The second part focuses on choosing a career path best suited to one's talents and preferences. It not only covers the career itself, but whether one is best as self-employed, freelance or working for a company. It also helps with getting interviews and writing resumes. Throughout this section, questions and worksheets are provided so one can work out not only what job to look for, but also what one expects to accomplish when the job is obtained. Extensive resources and guidelines are provided.
Overall, this is a fabulous book for both those searching for a career path and those who just want to learn how to get the most out of life.
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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 20, 2000
Format: Paperback
Very real, deep thinking , thought provoking and moving. Makes one, open the mind and heart to a more enjoyable experience in life/work. Several teenage friends read a few pages and had a hard time putting it down. A book for the person that is not into lying, someone that is interested in an honest life...not too many people can live a life like that. For Honest living...like the children really are! A great book...worth the time and money to challenge your mind and open your heart.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Patrick D. Goonan on May 30, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am an integral coach who does a lot of career counseling. This is hands down my absolute favorite book on this topic because it provides inspiration, practical tools and presents good information in a way that is very easy for anyone to understand.

This book is essentially about finding your vocation or your heart's deepest desire. It encourages you to align your work with your values as much as possible and it is written from a spiritual perspective that is generally Eastern, but it does not actually push a particular worldview over any others.

If you have the discipline to work through this book, you will learn a lot about yourself and the type of work that makes you most happy. It will also show you how to take what you most love doing and create opportunities to do more of it.

This book is particularly good for mid-life career changers and young people who are idealistic or torn between their head and their heart. It provides tools that will help them to cut through confusion and get clarity about what really matters to them.

This is my favorite work by this author. His other work is good, but I find this particular book a step above his other work. If you want a good career resource in a similar vein, I also recommend "The Beginner's Guide to Finding Your Perfect Job" by Rick Jarow. This is a very helpful and inexpensive tape or CD.
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