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Focus: The Hidden Driver of Excellence Paperback – May 5, 2015
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"Rebound" by Kwame Alexander
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The opening chapters contained the rudiments of correlation to brain areas such as the effects of the amygdala, hypo campus and insula. Having studied these brain regions and the common best understanding, I conclude that he offered facile connections that were unjustified by the current state of the science.
Then, looking at the author's list of books, I came to the personal conclusion that the amount of padding in this book was secondary to an author having used up the stronger material he has and now he is moving to weaker, less well developed ideas that are really not justified.
Goleman is the leading global teacher in emotional intelligence, but also in holistic leadership development. Leaders' attention determines the course of their organizations. People make decisions to align with in the attention span of their leaders. It is a leader's task to consistently direct other's attention.
With this book he brings three areas of focus to the fore, which he understands as : inner- (emotional self awareness) other -( social intelligence, reading atmosphere of teams, body language, listening first ) and outer- (systems intelligence, environmental understanding and long term thinking) attention.
What I missed in the book was very practical exercizes for attention keeping. Goleman did however draw on the effect of mindfulness and body breathing, but I think a practical handbook for each chapter could serve a coach/ leader well.
His resources at the end is good for follow up.
I agree and laughed with the reviewer who pointed out that for a book on Focus, this book wanders. To be honest I didn't take time think through how I might have re-organized the presentation for better results -- so maybe it could be better organized and maybe not. Nonetheless, the approach to the subject was still interesting and the vignettes on point and instructive.
I ESPECIALLY recommend this book for all teachers and any parents of ADD children. However, I also recommend it to all readers. I will be looking at this author's other works.
There are also engaging stories, references to a wealth of books and articles that I now want to read, and many interesting metaphors such as "Emotional aperture;" this is the ability to perceive subtle cues in a group, which operates a bit like a camera. We can zoom in to focus on one person's feelings, as the author says, or zoom out to take in the collective-- whether a classroom or a work group. There are also refreshing turns of phrases, such as a saying that "When a pickpocket meets a saint, all he sees are the pockets." Well worth reading.