I don’t often do book reviews. But I just finished a book that resonated so deeply with both how I want to live my life and the ideas that are at the heart of The Ripple Revolution that I couldn’t help but sit down and write one.
Imagine having 235 in-depth conversations with “wise elders,” people who had lived a long life and had something important to teach. Now imagine squeezing the essence of what those wise elders had to share into a single book. The result is the five secrets you must discover before you die.
I read a lot of books in the personal development genre, both for personal and professional growth. It’s not often I find myself wanting to grab random people on the street, put the book in their hands and say, “You need to read this!”
It’s not that I had some epiphany about what’s important. None of the ideas were new to me; they’re ideas that at some level we all know. What was so powerful for me was the way it all came straight from the horse’s mouth. It offered a context that created an added relevance and poignancy. I found myself being able to fast forward to my twilight years and look back at where I am now and the choices I’m making. And it felt so clear what is working and what I would regret.
Even that exercise isn’t new to me. But there was something about having the context of actual people looking back that made it more compelling and real.
The secrets are:
Be true to yourself (Reflect more)
Leave no regrets (Risk more)
Become love (Love more)
Live the moment (Enjoy more)
Give more than you take (Return more)
My parents visited me last weekend. While they were here, my mom was looking at the book and read a list of the five secrets out loud. My dad laughed and said, “Great – now I don’t have to read the book.”
But those five ideas themselves aren’t the whole story. The whole story is a deeper look at what those ideas mean, where they came from, and how we can apply them in our lives.
I pretty much live personal development work 24/7, partially because that’s the focus of my work and partially because I want the positive impact it has on my own personal life. So it’s not often that I find myself reading something and feeling inspired with a visceral motivation to make that change.
I felt that again and again in this book.
For example, as I read the section on Leave No Regrets, I found myself feeling really clear on the ways I was showing up that I would look back on with regret. Some of those involved not taking risks, not doing what I feel inspired to do, and some of them involved ways I show up where I’m just not the person I want to be. I didn’t come away with the feeling of “oh, I suck!” The book left me with a feeling of, “It’s time to do something about that!”
It’s an easy, entertaining, interesting, and engaging read. Sometimes the personal development books I read have good insights, but feel like a chore to read. Others are enjoyable reads, but light on substance. This book combined the best of both worlds.
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