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Don't Be Nice, Be Real: Balancing Passion for Self with Compassion for Others Paperback – January 1, 2010
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"Don't be nice, be real" spoke to me on a deep level and helped me to view things from a different perspective. I hate to sound cliche, but it has helped me find myself and has positively effected my quality of life and the quality of my relationships.
This book is a practical handbook for applying Nonviolent Communication methods. However, it covers far more than this, and in an entertaining way, rife with good examples. Enlightened selfishness (resulting in actually being more loving to others instead of less loving to them), spirituality, meaningful relationships, blaming, fair fighting, empathy, motivation, compassion, mindfulness, therapy, our American culture, sexuality, violence, war, negotiation, and more are covered.
To testify to the excellence of this book, there are endorsements from John Gray, Mitch Albom, Alan Cohen, and many other authors and others. The forward was written by Marshall Rosenberg, the founder of Nonviolent Communication. It is an atypical book that not everyone will appreciate, because it is unorthodox and non-traditional. It is one of my favorite books ever because of the originality of the ideas presented, the freshness of the examples, and its re-readability.
If you are not familiar with Nonviolent Communication, you will still get a great deal out of this book (and probably want to learn more!). If you are interested in peace and justice, you will enjoy it. If you are interested in dramatically bettering your relationships, you will enjoy it. If you are interested in developing a more compassionate spirituality, you will enjoy it. If you are a student of A Course in Miracles, you will really, really enjoy it.
One of my favorite parts of the book is a chapter about a "new religion" called "Non-Rushin' Unorthodoxy"---a testimony to not rushing, being present, enjoying our time. I really enjoyed the author's humorous and passionate styel.
The style of the book is narrative, and it's only real flaw is that it covers such a wide array of topics that it's hard to find things, to refer back to things since there is no index. I overcame this by book marking, highlighting, underlining---the subject matter is worth it.
If you are interested in any of the above topics, I would highly recommend this book. If you see yourself as mainstream, conventional, not really interested in challenging any of your beliefs, and definitely not interested in the topics the book is about, you'd probably be better off passing on it.