- Audible Audiobook
- Listening Length: 4 hours
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Abridged
- Publisher: Bantam Doubleday Dell Audio
- Audible.com Release Date: December 15, 1999
- Language: English
- ASIN: B0057GSB3A
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
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I Could Do Anything If Only I Knew What It Was Audible Audiobook – Abridged
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Having said that, if you have never been in therapy, reading this book will equip you with some good knowledge that can potentially speed up treatment, if you ever feel like getting it.
Second, if you by any chance has to live with or interact with (as in your workplace, for example) with a toxic person and are able to realize this, do whatever you can to cut any contact with or stay away as much as you can from this individual.
In case you don’t see any of the people in your life being able to sabotage you self-confidence and enthusiasm for life, but in actuality there are such individuals doing just that, this book may help you find out who they are.
This is one of the best Psychology/self-help books I’ve ever read, and I’ve read many. There’s simply a lot of valuable information, tips and strategies designed to help you get in touch with your inner self and start realizing what exactly keeps you from knowing what you want to do in your life.
In a nutshell, what the book does is this:
1. Discusses many reasons (psychological or not) why one doesn’t know what one wants do in life;
2. Encourages the reader to get into action, choosing any random activity in order to exercise the “muscles” he/she will need when he/she finally discovers his/her calling;
3. Explains the core psychological issues (resistance) that keep one from knowing what he/she wants to do with his/her life;
4. Describes several different kinds of ways those psychological issues may manifest, causing (among other things) the indecisiveness about what one really wants to do in life - and how to tackle them with tips and strategies designed for each.
Those different resistance profiles comprise the bulk of the book, but by the time you finish chapter 3, the last introductory one, you will already gained some invaluable insight about your own psyche. It is like a crash course in cognitive-behavioral therapy, although it’s not a quick read: there’s tons of exercises and self-inventories to be made here. The author suggests that the reader read all the profiles, even those he/she may feel don’t apply to himself/herself. I found it was worth doing, as I could relate to bits and pieces of many of them.
The author seldom labels specific behaviors or mental disorders that might be present in caregivers and/or other key people in our lives when discussing the ways their attitudes might harm us as we grow up, but the descriptions of emotional abuse, negligence, indifference, et cetera, and how those attitudes (or lack thereof) work to shape the manner with which we come to see ourselves and relate to the world is all there.
I would recommend this book as an excellent kickstart in the journey of self-discovery.
Summing it up, I would say that this book’s main goal is to help the reader get to know himself/herself and, at the same time, encourage him/her to start exposing himself/herself to new situations and activities, professional or not, because knowing oneself well is only part of discovering a passion. Most great discoveries made by humanity, be it in the fields of science or in the arts, happened by accident, by experimentation. I think Barbara Sher did a good job trying to help her readers understand this simple truth.
If you are a highly reflective person, I'd recommend passing on this book; however, if you are someone who is new to the world of self-discovery, you might find some helpful tidbits to help you discover your next steps in life.
Barbara spends the first three chapters of this book explaining that we all have passion inside us somewhere, but many of us have built up resistance to finding what we are passionate about. She provides several exercises to identify and let go of this resistance. I found the exercises helpful and meaningful, unlike the exercises in some other self-help books. I will warn that most of her psychological theories rely on events that happen in childhood, and I know that many people are very resistant to these theories.
The remaining chapters of the book are targeted to specific groups of career seekers. There is a chapter for those who are interested in so many things that they can't pick just one, a chapter for those who are so successful that they find it hard to leave their current job, a chapter for those who have seen a dream slip away, a chapter for those who can't find anything interesting (that's me!), etc. The exercises in these specific chapters are the ones I found to be the most helpful. Barbara provides exercises that can be implemented immediately and are tangible. In other books, I found myself meditating about ideas in my head, but never executing anything. It is the complete opposite in this book - all of the exercises have tangible outputs, either written work or tasks to be completed in the near future.
Highly recommended for those trying to find their "dream" job - or just a job they don't hate!