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Chicken Soup for the Unsinkable Soul: 101 Stories Paperback – September 1, 1999

4.5 out of 5 stars 25 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

JACK CANFIELD and MARK VICTOR HANSEN, #1 New York Times and USA Today bestselling coauthors, are professional speakers who have dedicated their lives to enhancing the personal and professional development of others. Canfield and Hansen are based out of Santa Barbara, California and Newport Beach, California, respectively

HEATHER MCNAMARA is the senior editor of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series, based out of Santa Barbara, California.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Sharing Beauty

Circumstances are like a mattress: When we
are on top, we rest in comfort; when we are
underneath, we are smothered.

Anonymous


I think it was 1982. I know it was October. A friend had business dealings in the city of Reno, Nevada, and I was asked to accompany her on an overnight trip. While she conducted her business, I was aimlessly wandering down Virginia Street, headed into a most gloriously beautiful sunset. I had an urge to speak to someone on the street to share that beauty, but I couldn't make eye contact with anyone. It seemed everyone was shuffling along looking at their feet.

I took the next-best action. Quickly I ducked into a department store and asked the lady behind the counter if she could come outside for just a minute. She looked at me as though I were from some other planet and said, ôWellàö

I said, "It will only take a moment." Seemingly against her better judgment, she moved toward the door.

When she got outside I said to her, just look at that sunset! Nobody out here was looking at it and I just had to share it with someone."

For a few seconds we just looked. Then I said, "God's in his heaven and all's right with the world." I thanked her for coming out to see it; she went back inside and I left. It felt good to share the beauty.

I forgot about the episode.

Four years later my situation had altered considerably. I had come to the end of a twenty-year marriage. I was alone and on my own for the first time in my life and in drastically reduced circumstances. I lived in a trailer park which, at the time, I considered a real come-down, and I had to do my wash in the communal laundry room.

One day, while my clothes were going around, I picked up a Unity Magazine and read an article about a woman who had been in similar circumstances. She had come to the end of a marriage, moved to a strange community, and the only job she could find was one she disliked: cosmetic sales in a department store. We had a lot in common. She was as bummed out as I was.

Then something happened to her that changed everything. She said a woman came into her department store and asked her to step outside to look at a sunset. The stranger had said, "God's in his heaven and all's right with the world," and she had realized the truth in that statement and that she simply had not been seeing it. From that moment on, she turned her life around.


—Sherry Maddox

[EDITORS' NOTE: Sherry returned to the laundry room but the magazine was gone. She wrote Unity Magazine, but they were moving when they received her letter and couldn't help. She wants the woman in Reno to know that she has done the same thing for her. The gift has come full circle.]


(c)1999 Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen. All rights reserved. Reprinted from Chicken Soup for the Unsinkable Soul by Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen, Heather McNamara. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the written permission of the publisher. Publisher: Health Communications, Inc., 3201 SW 15th Street, Deerfield Beach, FL 33442.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 350 pages
  • Publisher: Health Communications, Inc.; 1 edition (September 1, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1558746986
  • ISBN-13: 978-1558746985
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.5 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,038,593 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I bought this book for my son Ted who is in jail. I was looking for a book that would inspire him and tell him stories of other people who have overcome great hardships in life. My son said the book moved him deeply and brought tears to his eyes several times.
Ted is a drug addict, suffers from serious depression and broke several laws. He was eventually jailed for his crimes. I believe that he has much potential but he made many unwise decisions and jail is the appropriate place for him to take his punishment.When he leaves jail he will then go to in-patient treatment for his drug problem. He will need all the strength and courage he can find. I want Ted to understand that he has the opportunity to change his life, that other people have overcome greater problems than he faces and I hoped this book would help. I think it did just that.
If you know someone who is not making wise decisions, who feels life is unfair and needs the courage to take control of the their life--then this is the book for them. Buy it and give it to them. Who know, maybe you will help someone change their life.
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Format: Paperback
I have just finished reading it, my first Chicken Soup book too, and enjoyed most of the stories. One of the stories stood out. It was about a young girl, Arlyn, titled Wind Beneath My Wings, written by her mother after her Arlyn's death. In this busy, hectic world, we get so busy, it was a good reminder for me to listen more carefully to my own daughter. At the end of the book the author's mailing and email addresses were listed - I think that is an extra bonus! I would recommend the book, and this story, for anyone who has a child.
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Format: Paperback
A wonderful collection of insightful and inspiring short stories from a variety of authors. Each and every story is filled with thoughtful inspiration and sharing.
Sometimes I just have a few minutes to read a quick story and this is a great title to do that with. The stories are varied but the common theme is the strength of the human spirit.
I also fully enjoyed the unique bio pages on all the contributors. Well done and easy to read!
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By A Customer on September 27, 1999
Format: Paperback
I love short stories because I can read them before I go to sleep without losing a story line. After a helping of Chicken Soup for the Unsinkable Soul, I know I will go to sleep with good thoughts and hope and no fear of bad dreams. My favorite story is toward the end of the book, "Hussy Sunsets". My thanks go to Jack Canfield, et all for bringing joy and humor to my nightstand.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
As someone who has had her share of trials in the last year, I came to Amazon Kindle books looking for short stories that would inspire me to keep my eyes focused on the good in my life and not the negative. This book has played an important part in this journey of mine to gratitude instead of negativity. Thanks Amazon for having this book available to those of us that are visually challenged.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I purchased this book for my mom a couple of Christmases ago. I did so because she was having a difficult time dealing with her mother's illness.

My mom is reading this book a second time, she says she finds it to be so very uplifting. She'll read one or two stories at a time, every now and then, and it can help her when she's feeling down.

She says the stories are well written, and short enough to just pick up the book and read for a few minutes, or read for an hour if you like. They really are inspirational to her, and still to this day, as family illnesses have grown and she's got a lot to deal with on a daily basis.

It is just a little something for her to help, and I'd recommend it to anyone who needs some uplifting words. It makes a great gift for someone who is grieving, or dealing with a situation that often makes them feel alone or helpless.
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Format: Paperback
My friend gave me this book a few years ago, when I was going through a rough time.

I give it 4 stars, because it is not as great as previous Chicken Soup books. But the stories are still very inspiring.

Each story is more emotional & moving than the next. Lots of tears were shed, as I read these stories. It makes you realize that your problems aren't so bad & there are a lot of people who have it worse off than you. You must keep a positive attitude & remember that 'life goes on.'

If you are looking to put your problems into perspective & see the big picture, then this book is for you.
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Format: Paperback
This book is okay, but nowhere near as good as its predecessors. It is comprised of short stories -- often rather verbose short stories -- rather than the short, meaningful passages in the earlier Chicken Soup books. The earlier books are studded with post-it stickers saving the innumerable passages I want to reread or frame, and I frequently think back to those wonderful passages. Not these -- there isn't a single post-it sticker in the entire book, and I'm donating it to the charity fair since there's nothing worth rereading. To be fair, I suppose that this might prove helpful to someone overwhelmed by insurmountable problems and in need of reading sappy boring story after sappy boring story -- but I, myself, was much more humbled and inspired by the earlier volumes.
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