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Peter Atkins is the managing director of Permian Partners, an investment fund he founded in 2001 amidst the Internet bust. Permian approaches buying stock the same way it would evaluate the purchase of an entire business.
Prior to Permian, Peter was a General Manager at Microsoft, where over the course of six years he helped to start, manage and, later, invest in various early consumer Internet businesses, including Sidewalk.com. Earlier in his career, Peter worked at Time Inc. in New York City.
Peter has a BA degree from Skidmore College, an MBA degree from Cornell University and did graduate work at Harvard University.
I enjoyed this book a lot. The photo the author has taken of his travels are phenomenal: they add to the book in a quiet , but outstanding way. Looking at each photo gave me time to ponder each essay the author had written. Every concept in this book is meaningful if you apply it to your life. If you want the recipe for a happy life, it's here. Simple to read, but I encourage you to think on each principle and see where you can make the changes you need to live happily and well. Don't let the brevity of this book keep you from buying it.
Full disclosure, I know Mr. Atkins and I can say from personal experience that he writes the way he talks -- concise, pragmatic, heart felt and to the point. He doesn't waste his own time or yours. Nothing you will read in his book is new--we all know the contents to be true but so easy to forget when external pressures and concerns act to push us off track. As Atkins reminds us, we typically only see the end results of other people's effort, rarely are we exposed to the hard work, sweat and focus required behind personal achievement. If you've forgotten or are feeling discouraged that it seems to be taking you more work, instructive failures or effort than the next man or woman, take the time to read this book and be reminded that you're exactly where you ought to be or can soon be back on your way. A life well lived is a creative act and this book is an excellent and simple set of observations and reminders to help.
For most of us, the difference between a fulfilling life well lived and its opposite is not the lack of some revelation that we have never considered before. It is the consistency with which we align our time and our effort and our habits to those values we hold most dear.
Unlike most authors of "self-help" and inspirational books (or business books for that matter), Atkins is not concerned with filling enough pages to justify a book deal, nor it seems is he trying to launch a career on the speaking circuit. This frees him from the tendency in these genres to find six ways to make the same point, or to claim some "breakthrough" approach to happiness. In refreshingly clear and concise terms, he "just" does what we all would do for ourselves, if we had the focus and self-discipline to do it: makes a thoughtful list of the main tenets and practices that lead to a happy life, with just enough explanation of each to make it useful. The result is not a guru's tome to be pondered over many nights until it is left half unread on the bedside table. It is a clear, compelling, and dead-on accurate field guide to good living, which we can keep in our pocket in the great walk of life.
As the author says, it only takes an hour to read the book. I for one will re-invest that hour every 6 months or so, and I'm sure it will be worthwhile each time.
"Life is Short And So Is This Book: Brief Thoughts on Making The Most Of Your Life" is a book for all! Whether you are searching for meaning in your own life, trying to find a path to happiness or just looking for a good read, this book is for you! The beauty of it is Atkins' ability to strip away the extra "fluff" that can often be found in other inspirational and "self-help" books, allowing the reader to focus on and apply the lessons stated to their own life to find meaning and understanding. It is a great read, written from the perspective of a friend who shares some of his life's lessons and asks you to simply listen. This book doesn't preach to the reader and doesn't claim to have all the answers, but it does make you think about who you are and the way that you live your life. No matter who you are or where you are coming from, this book is a great read to help you realign your purpose and drive in life with one that leads to satisfaction and happiness.
This is one of those little books that condenses the wisdom of the ages into a very small package. And it does this very well.
Just the table of contents – the names of the 10 chapters – comprises a good philosophy of life: Create space. Try not to worry. Don’t do really dumb things. Build character and make friends. Care for yourself and others. Laugh. Do what you love. Embrace change. Learn from experience. Have dreams and work toward them.
Peter Atkins’ little book is worth reading and re-reading – it will reward you every time.
I gave it three stars because it was good, and interesting, and had a lot of positives things to get you going on seeing the world and your life a little different. But It just for me wasn't one of those books that really impacted my life to a point of making a difference. I took a lot of the points of this book into consideration because they are true points. But I was personally looking for something a little more impractical for me.
This book is a must read for people of various ages. It offers life lessons for those young adults starting out on life and it is equally valuable to people throughout their lives who struggle with choices and dilemmas. It is a roadmap for finding and keeping to one's path.