Did the lack of Action Steps take away from the usefulness of this book?

Use this forum to discuss the November Book of the month "If life stinks get your head outta your buts" by Mark L. Wdowiak
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Anthony__
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Re: Did the lack of Action Steps take away from the usefulness of this book?

Post by Anthony__ »

I like the exercises at the end of the chapter, its thought-provoking. It discourages procrastination.

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Post by FictionLover »

Anthony__ wrote: ↑
04 Jan 2019, 06:46
I like the exercises at the end of the chapter, its thought-provoking. It discourages procrastination.
I agree. Many have commented that it would be distracting or not specific enough to each reader, but I think, if done correctly, it would enhance the reading experience and add give each reader a more specific "road map" to use the information.
"I love reading another reader’s list of favorites. Even when I find I do not share their tastes or predilections, I am provoked to compare, contrast, and contradict. It is a most healthy exercise, and one altogether fruitful." T.S. Eliot

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Post by sonya01 »

Even though I quite like action steps at the end of each chapter, the fact that there are none in this book doesn't diminish its usefulness. After all, as adults, it's up to us to decide how we can apply the lessons taught, without being spoon-fed. I believe it's preferable to develop our discernment and wisdom through reading this kind of book, as opposed to rote textbook learning which doent allow us to think for ourselves..

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Post by FictionLover »

sonya01 wrote: ↑
10 Jan 2019, 08:54
Even though I quite like action steps at the end of each chapter, the fact that there are none in this book doesn't diminish its usefulness. After all, as adults, it's up to us to decide how we can apply the lessons taught, without being spoon-fed. I believe it's preferable to develop our discernment and wisdom through reading this kind of book, as opposed to rote textbook learning which doent allow us to think for ourselves..
I agree and understand your point of view. Your answer has been echoed in almost everyone who has said they didn't need action steps.

However, I suppose it is a matter of semantics. When I think of "Action Steps", I never assume that a book or author will be telling me what to do, or what issues I need to work on. Actions steps, in my opinion, would be just re-iterating what the author was teaching in that chapter.

For example, this book speaks to personal responsibility. The action steps for a chapter that highlights this topic might simply be asking you to review a time in your life where you took personal responsibility for something. It might follow up by asking if there was an event where you did not accept responsibility.

Having each reader think about these two open ended and somewhat vague questions would allow his teaching to seep through. I think that those readers who see a need to apply his lessons would then be able to begin the process of developing their own wisdom, as you put it. Those who don't have anything "come up" for them would develop their wisdom in another way.

Anyway, this is my perception of what actions steps are based on my personal reading.


:tiphat: :tiphat:
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Post by jessinikkip »

I feel that a self-help book can be effective without lining out step by step exactly what to do. Precisely because then you have to think for yourself and come up with your OWN action plan, and isn't changing your way and thinking for yourself the exact purpose of a self-help book?

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Post by FictionLover »

jessinikkip wrote: ↑
12 Jan 2019, 22:44
I feel that a self-help book can be effective without lining out step by step exactly what to do. Precisely because then you have to think for yourself and come up with your OWN action plan, and isn't changing your way and thinking for yourself the exact purpose of a self-help book?
I understand your point. As I stated above, I guess my perception of the words "Action Steps" is different than many other people.

I have never read a self-help book that told the reader exactly what to do. Unless, of course, that was what it was for, like "Outline your novel in 10 Steps."
"I love reading another reader’s list of favorites. Even when I find I do not share their tastes or predilections, I am provoked to compare, contrast, and contradict. It is a most healthy exercise, and one altogether fruitful." T.S. Eliot

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Post by BeatrixPotter »

I think so, because other than a few main points, he spoke in vague generalities for most of the book.
"There's so much more to a book than just the reading."
-- Maurice Sendak

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Post by FictionLover »

BeatrixPotter wrote: ↑
14 Jan 2019, 20:22
I think so, because other than a few main points, he spoke in vague generalities for most of the book.
I thought so, too. I spent most of the book waiting for him to outline some strategy which he recommended as a way to implement his suggestions.

I was thinking just yesterday, how writing a goals list made a huge impact on my life. He didn't even suggest that!

:tiphat: :tiphat:
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Post by nomnombooks »

Although I think Action Steps can be a useful tool in self help books like this, it did not take away the book's usefulness in this case. I like that it gives the reader ideas and a lot of helpful input and one can decide for oneself how to practice it.

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Post by Jessacardinal »

I agree with you. I too felt as if I were waiting for more throughout the book.
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Post by FictionLover »

Jessacardinal wrote: ↑
16 Jan 2019, 23:16
I agree with you. I too felt as if I were waiting for more throughout the book.
Glad to know I was not alone!
"I love reading another reader’s list of favorites. Even when I find I do not share their tastes or predilections, I am provoked to compare, contrast, and contradict. It is a most healthy exercise, and one altogether fruitful." T.S. Eliot

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Post by MsH2k »

I think having action steps could limit how you apply what you get from the book. Everyone is in a different place and may come away with a different plan of action based on what resonated with them. If he suggested to do a or b and you really would benefit from doing c, you may miss what you really need to do by doing what you’re “supposed” to do.

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Post by FictionLover »

MsH2k wrote: ↑
10 Sep 2019, 20:18
I think having action steps could limit how you apply what you get from the book. Everyone is in a different place and may come away with a different plan of action based on what resonated with them. If he suggested to do a or b and you really would benefit from doing c, you may miss what you really need to do by doing what you’re “supposed” to do.
I understand.

But at the same time, if you are the type of person who doesn't motivate themselves very well, you might wind up doing nothing.
:tiphat:
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Post by Twylla »

This book was full of great advice. In fact, it was a treasure chest of ideas to hold onto in life. It would have been better with more practical to dos but it was still an excellent book.

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Post by FictionLover »

Twylla wrote: ↑
29 Feb 2020, 11:38
This book was full of great advice. In fact, it was a treasure chest of ideas to hold onto in life. It would have been better with more practical to dos but it was still an excellent book.
:tiphat:
"I love reading another reader’s list of favorites. Even when I find I do not share their tastes or predilections, I am provoked to compare, contrast, and contradict. It is a most healthy exercise, and one altogether fruitful." T.S. Eliot

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