4 out of 4 stars
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A self-made millionaire, Rob White comes from a mill town in Massachusetts. White’s life was fixed by his town’s traditions and unwritten laws. Aspiring to become more than a factory worker, he decided to go against what others expected of him. He attended college at the University of Massachusetts. He was a teacher in Boston for seventeen years, but decided to start a new career in business during his forties. Proving that he could achieve anything he set his mind to, he became an extremely successful real estate developer and restaurateur. With properties in both coasts of the United States, designer clothes, expensive cars, and exotic trips, White thought he had all the luxuries that money can buy. His life, however, was missing something deeper than appearances and material things. As a result, he started looking for “gurus who could share their wisdom and help me feel as rich on the inside as I appeared on the outside.” During his journey meeting famous gurus, he realized that the most important lessons of his life came from ordinary people. In And Then I Met Margaret: Stories of Personal Transformation, White shares 21 life lessons that changed his life.
A fast and easy read with a nice-looking format, And Then I Met Margaret is a motivational memoir of 185 pages. Each of the 21 chapters begins with a myth White believed and ends with a reality White discovered. The inspirational stories, within the chapters, explain how he learned significant life lessons. Although these stories are his personal experiences, the reader can truly relate to them. This engaging teaching method effectively maintains the reader interested in the stories the whole time.
I identified the most with the author when he decided he had to break with his town’s traditions and unwritten laws. When White got into the University of Massachusetts, his father felt betrayed and his friends thought he considered himself superior. Despite what others expected of him, White followed his own path. I have had to break with traditions, unwritten laws, and other people’s expectations of what I should to do with my life many times. White argues “that not only does the company we keep define who we are, it also helps us determine the level of faith we have in ourselves.” This life lesson is incredibly true. We should definitely choose our friends carefully and “never stop daring to dream big.”
My favorite life lesson in the book was that White believed that he had to impress other people in order to “get the applause of the world.” He had already become a motivational teacher and speaker. Without getting into much detail, he went through an embarrassing situation at a vital presentation he was giving at a company’s annual convention. He learned that “nothing is better than being authentic.” I loved reading this story because I am a firm believer of being genuine.
At a time when there is so much pressure to be and think like everyone else, I believe readers will take a lot from And Then I Met Margaret. White’s tone is enthusiastic. His writing style is inspiring without being preachy. Some of the main precepts of this book are to be authentic, dream big, break with tradition, and work hard. Furthermore, White reinvented himself several times during his life. He was a teacher, real estate developer, and restaurateur. He is now a motivational teacher, speaker, and author. Without a doubt, his life demonstrates that we have the ability to accomplish our dreams if we have passion and grit.
I absolutely enjoyed reading each of the stories within this book. The only thing that I did not like was that White became arrogant after becoming wealthy. However, this was part of his life’s journey, and he learned a pivotal life lesson from the most unexpected guru.
Unquestionably, I rate And Then I Met Margaret by Rob White 4 out of 4 stars. The readers will learn a lot from White’s 21 inspiring life lessons. I certainly did. I am also glad that I chose to read this book when a new year was coming because the author’s writing style is perfect for setting the mood for new beginnings. The book only has a few typos. I recommend it to readers of motivational memoirs and self-help books. In addition, it is an excellent read for those looking for inspiration to be authentic, break with tradition, dream big, work hard, and achieve goals.
And Then I Met Margaret
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