4 out of 4 stars
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If Life Stinks, Get Your Head Outta Your But's: A No-Nonsense Guide to Happiness and Success by Mark L. Wdowiak is a short and to the point self-help book. It contains thirty-two brief chapters divided into four sections with five to eleven chapters in each section. The introduction section is followed by The Three Areas of Critical Consideration: Crawling, Walking and Running. The chapter and section breakdowns are useful for reference, but in no way interrupt the flow over the overall message. It transitions well and is an easy to follow book throughout.
Wdowiak handles the writing in a 'conversation with the reader' manner with excellent results. His writing is clear and full of enthusiasm. I especially liked his explanation for writing the book, which was basically that it would make him feel good to help YOU get the same enjoyment out of life that he has. His definition of success, to my pleasant surprise, was your definition of success, whatever that may be. His 'personal' definition, like our 'personal' definitions, might be vastly different, but success in the way it's used in this book reads much more like life fulfillment than the more common association with fame and fortune. Though, the author makes the point of telling the reader that if fame and fortune are your thing, then by all means, you can have it and here's how.
I found the book to be very similar in advice to The Four Agreements, a book of Toltec wisdom but presented in a much more down-to-earth style. There was also the element of examining one's own thought patterns, which I found to be a familiar theme from Zen teachings. There are many well thought out insights and simple practical advice for creating a better life for yourself.
Here are a few examples of Wdowiak's advice:
Remember, just because something is urgent, it doesn't necessarily mean that it's important.
The price for doing something out of obligation is steep and conditional, and it always, at some level, creates some animosity and resentment towards the recipient of the duty.
The author engages and challenges the reader throughout the book with questions designed to make them explore their own thoughts, beliefs, and desires. He uses quite a bit of humor in his writing, with a few personal anecdotes thrown in for emphasis. He also uses many sayings, cliches, proverbs, and quotes throughout the writing to get his concepts across to as many readers as possible.By allowing yourself to be offended, you immediately give your power away and become the victim.
There were a few small grammatical errors, but no major misspellings or garbled sentences. Overall, I found If Life Stinks to be an enjoyable read with solid life advice for any reader. Even if you are familiar with the advice, the book is still a good refresher and uplifting pep-talk. I give this book a rating of 4 out of 4 stars and would recommend it to readers of any genre.
If life stinks get your head outta your buts
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