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Your Life Isn't for You: A Selfish Person's Guide to Being Selfless Paperback – September 22, 2014
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Your Life Isn t For You by Seth Adam Smith is a small, easy to read but powerful book full of positive messages. It is lighthearted and filled with important life lessons aimed to give readers a heightened sense of self awareness.
The book is distinguished by his candor. He tells you that your life is about being of service to others in countless ways and thus the title becomes clear. If you feel you re encountering problems because of your own selfish attitudes or behavior, I strongly recommend you read his book.
One of those books that readers will be able to go back to time and again to remind themselves what can happen in life and how good life can be if lived for others.
Blog Critics and Seattle Post Intelligencer
A brilliantly written and insightful book. Seth s vulnerability and honesty are irresistible pulling you in and opening your heart to the possibility of a life without walls.
Michael J. Merchant, President, ANASAZI Foundation
Seth s amazing book illustrates a powerful and proven path to happiness and gently reminds us how easily we forget this profound truth: focusing on others brings the deepest joy.
Lindsay Hadley, founder and CEO, Hadley Impact Consulting
Seth Adam Smith has figured out some of life s greatest lessons through remarkable life experiences and by listening to the great teachers that were placed in his path.
Sterling C. Tanner, President and Executive Director, Forever Young Foundation"
Top Customer Reviews
That’s the opening paragraph. The author uses the rest of the short 82 pages to describe how he lived his life only for himself and finally found peace when he started living for others. Smith starts the first chapter by explaining how he was born with a “frighteningly large head.”
From there he starts to intertwine his story with a bedtime story his dad read to him and his sister called, “The Selfish Giant.” He uses parts of that story to illustrate his message throughout the book and his story.
Smith also writes openly and in detail about attempting to end his own life. His thoughts before the attempt and his thoughts afterward are very moving and telling.
The message of this book is important to all ages. Living for others makes one’s own life more meaningful. We all need and look for meaning in life. Smith puts it front and center in this book, living only for one’s self is not a good way to live.
what can happen in life and how good life can be if lived for others.
Each chapter begins with really great quotes. Plus, the way the author mixes the story of “The Selfish Giant” makes the message really stick. It’s a great book with a great message.
However, I don’t think I am the target audience. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m by no means a completely selfless person. But I understand that my life isn’t all mine. I’m a mom, a wife, a daughter, etc. And I’m not in my late teens or early twenties. That is the age range for this message. I think those who are just becoming adults and going out on their own would benefit from this book.
At first–and this sounds awful–but I couldn’t feel that bad for Mr. Smith. (I know, that sounds horrible.) It just felt like he was a kid who was very blessed but just wasn’t happy. Kind of a woe-is-me tale. However, once I learned more about his depression and what he was going through, I started to feel more compassion toward his situation. Once we got into his story about coming back to “life,” it really took a turn for the better. I found it uplifting and promising. I enjoyed hearing his stories about his times in Russia, both before and after his suicide attempt. These stories depicted the selfless aspect of Mr. Smith’s message. And I really appreciated the story of “The Selfish Giant” by Oscar Wilde being woven throughout Mr. Smith’s tale. It worked. On the other hand, I wish the story about Prometheus (being a light) wasn’t included in this book. It didn’t seem to fit with the the theme for me. I thought it would be better suited for a different subject.
Would I recommend it: I think so.
Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
When his essay "Marriage Isn't For You" went viral in 2013, getting over 2.2 million views in 36 hours. The essay was printed in the Huffington Post and numerous other newsfeeds and publications. Smith appeared with his wife Kim on GMA and Fox and Friend's to talk about the success of his newsworthy essay. Later it would be translated by volunteers in over 20 languages to be received world wide.
In 2005 at the age of 19, Smith was appointed to go on a 2 year term to be a missionary in Eastern Russia near the city of Viadivostok. This was a particularly troubling time for him, as he struggled with undiagnosed chronic depression, and later attempted to end his life. Smith was pulled from a car, (he had swallowed a full bottle of sleeping pills also a half bottle of pain pills) and saved by his father who called the EMT's. While recovering Smith would realize what a selfish act this was and dedicated his life more fully to service of others.
In growing up his father read him "The Selfish Giant" (Oscar Wilde), Smith talks about the impact of literature on his life. While in Saint Petersburg he saw the statue of "The Resurrected Russian" and related the story of Fydor Dostoyevsky who became one of the greatest worldwide writer's of literature. Prometheus, hesitant at leaving the safety of Mt. Olympus, his story about service to those he loved.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
very, very little content. meandering account of the author's life. no more than an essay, with very little insight into the nature of selfishness, let alone how to overcome it.Published 6 months ago by paul joseph brown
I loved this book as soon as I started it. Before reading it I didn't think of myself as being a selfish person. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Amazon Customer
Well written and witty. I loved this book. I am a social worker and have recommended this read to several of my clientsPublished 9 months ago by Sara Flitton
Fantistic read. Written for almost any age to help raise your level of self awareness in regards to our selfish nature. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Christopher sainsbury
I really loved this book. I was sitting on the couch reading it and cracking up laughing at a few parts,(because Seth is a pretty funny guy) and my daughter said "what... Read morePublished 10 months ago by Artsyfartsy
I cannot begin to explain how much this book has impacted my life. I started reading it a little while ago but I finally finished it in a few short days. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Colby James Majors
Excellent book! I could frequently feel the truth that is written in this book. It's a great reminder of how to find deeper joy in life, by being selfless. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Brittany
This is one of the most meaningful quick reads I've ever picked up. These kind of books can often be didactic and preachy, but Seth's approach is refreshingly different. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Kimberly Christenson
This book; wow.
Seth beautifully and articulately expounds his (and his dad's) philosophy on perhaps the most beautiful principle of life. Read more