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Customer Review

35 of 41 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Proven principles, October 22, 2011
This review is from: The Compound Effect (Hardcover)
Hardy's advice works. I know, because I have been doing the same things for a long time. For example, I listen to nonfiction audiobooks instead of mindless music produced by some semi-literate drug addict. As I went through each point, I saw my own life philosophy kicked back at me.

But one difference that jumped out at me is I'm not filthy rich. And I can tell you why that is. Hardy actively applied the compounding effect to relationships with successful people. I did this for a while and got astounding results, then stopped doing it. And the results also stopped. So I can testify that his formula works and I can also testify that you get the lack of results he predicts when you just don't apply it to a given area.

An amazing area where this plays out in my life is that, despite a serious immune deficiency, I have not been sick since 1971. That isn't because of luck, it's because of discipline. I made a conscious decision to drop out of the American disease culture and instead practice health care. By consistently doing behaviors that promote health and consistently not doing behaviors that promote disease, I have stayed healthy.

In addition to personal experience, I have seen this habit thing play out time and time again for other people. When they tell me their problems, I ask them what habits they have that either contribute to this kind of problem or that prevent this kind of problem. These are problems ranging from frequently not being able to find the car keys to having a string of failed marriages.

If you haven't read success books and are wanting to turn your life around, this book can help you get started. But I would recommend reading other, meatier books so that you can develop and maintain the momentum Mr. Hardy talks about. The title of the book reflects its contents. It's about the compound effect. And it's about jumpstarting, especially from a dead stop. If you are already mostly doing the right things and doing them right, this book would serve more as a means of reviewing where you are with things.

There is a bit of a disconnect between what Mr. Hardy talks about (his own successes and millions of dollars of wealth) versus the idea of jumpstarting a person's stalled personal growth. I doubt most readers can relate to being anywhere near that wealthy, and I doubt most readers would consider it a practical personal goal. It would have been nice to see more "reachable" examples.

Just to illustrate what I mean, Bill Phillips is a fitness guru who held a contest for physical self-improvement. It was called Body For Life. There were 10 finalists, and Bill ended up changing the rules to call all of them winners. Now, you might think it would have been really inspiring to see 10 Mr. Universe types named as winners. But that wasn't what happened.

The winners were ordinary people who looked nothing like muscle magazine models after completing the contest. What was inspiring was their grit in applying the compounding effect for 90 days. Because ordinary people could see the results and relate to them, they also wanted to do the Body For Life program even though the contest was over.

I read some of the other reviews on this book, and found the criticisms largely valid. The content doesn't contain original ideas or a new breakthrough. Does that mean the book is junk? Maybe. Warren Buffet says his investing style isn't something he thought of, but he is instead using the ideas of Benjamin Graham. Suppose Buffet wanted something new and original, so he rejected Benjamin Graham's ideas as not being original or breakthrough.

OK, so the book is not ground-breaking. But if you apply its core principle to a stressful life, it will be rut-breaking.

Good information is good information, whether it's original or not. Going back to the Bill Phillips thing, the core idea is one I first came across while watching Jack LaLanne on a black and white television. That same core idea, of developing and maintaining good habits, was around before Jack LaLanne (Ben Franklin is famous for espousing this idea). I like the way Mr. Hardy presents his spin on it from his own experiences. Seeing this idea presented in many different ways helps me keep applying it regularly.

This book consists of six chapters, a conclusion, and a resource guide in 172 pages.
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Initial post: Jul 24, 2014 9:59:29 AM PDT
You're a good writer. Let me know if you ever write a book :)

Posted on Feb 3, 2015 5:22:30 AM PST
Amadeus says:
Could you please recommend a couple of "meatier" books? Double thanks, for the review and hopefully the recommendations.
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