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The Crossroads of Should and Must: Find and Follow Your Passion Hardcover – April 7, 2015
The 30 Best Self Help Books
This list reflects books that have saved lives and have sold millions of copies. Learn more on AbeBooks.com
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Elizabeth Gilbert, author Eat, Pray, Love and The Signature of All Things
"Elle's infectious enthusiasm will inspire you to do the boldest thing you can in life: be your true self."
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"How to turn that invisible inner fire into fuel for soul-warming bliss is what artist and designer Elle Luna explores in her essay-turned-book The Crossroads of Should and Must: Find and Follow Your Passion — an intelligent and rousing illustrated manifesto that picks up where Campbell left off, in the spirit of Parker Palmer’s emboldening guide to letting your life speakand Debbie Millman’s visual-essay-turned-commencement-address on courage and the creative life"
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"This artist and author's inspiring advice might just persuade you to leave your day job."
“This was the most inspiring book I read in 2015. It's an illustrated, easy read based on a blog post that went viral, but the inspirational message it contains is very powerful. It's a must-read for anyone considering shaking up the status quo or following a dream and how to deal with the real-life consequences that follow."
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Top customer reviews
For those who hadn’t read Elle’s essay, “The Crossroads of Should and Must” is about helping people overcome societal obligations and other barriers in order to achieve their passion. I don’t think the book breaks any new psychological ground, but what’s distinctive about it is the style. This isn’t a book filled with prose. Instead, it’s actually a piece of art. Every page has unique drawings, colorful script, markings, etc. It really drives home the optimistic message and definitely makes it more memorable.
That said, the very design of the book tells you much about its intended audience – artists. Elle seems to be talking primarily to struggling artists. The examples she mentions are Picasso, Philip Glass, John Grisham, etc. Many of her ideas for finding your “must” involve paints, paper, etc. Computers are bad. If your “must” is to become a doctor, a president, etc., you’ll probably find that this book doesn’t speak to you as much. For me, I was looking at a writing career, so I probably fell within the target audience, but barely.
I was also a bit surprised that, aside from the author’s own story, all of the examples in the book were of famous people. I know for me that one of the most intimidating aspects of “getting to must” is the recognition that I’ll probably never measure up the greats in my calling. Why try if you can only pale in comparison? I know as an aspiring artist I wouldn’t want Picasso as a standard. Instead, I’d like to learn more about how ordinary people found their “must.” What does it mean to have found your calling but to not become a celebrity in your field? That’s much more relatable and in many ways manageable.
Quibbles aside, this book did help me. I’m going to take some of its advice to heart and hopefully start finding my calling. I don’t know if it’ll work, but I can recommend this as a short, easy read that might change your life.