4 out of 4 stars
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Check Your Reality by Brian M. Keltner is a life-changing book that explores the power that thoughts hold over our interpretation of the world and hence, our resulting actions.
The book is divided into two parts. In the first part, the author discusses different distorted thinking patterns while in the second part, he provides solutions as to how the patterns can be transformed. Twenty-one distorted thinking patterns are explained and discussed adeptly. These sequences include overgeneralization, wishful thinking, people-pleasing, the fallacy of fairness and similar other patterns. In the chapter discussing the false pattern of “denial”, the author tells a story of Pharaoh who seats on the banks of River Nile absent-mindedly despite his kingdom been under attack by the Nubians. He consistently ignores the problem which ultimately leads to his kingdom’s destruction.
There are very many aspects of the book that resonate and sound familiar. Consequently, there is also a lot to be learned from Keltner’s advice. It is astounding to be able to recognize the effect that our thoughts have on our overall wellbeing. Possibly the best part of the book to me is, the text’s ability to make us stop and think through the perceptions and feelings we have carried along, probably for years, and sieve through them to determine their validity.
To aid the learning process that is discussed, the book contains various accounts that helped me internalize the author’s message. In one such account, a tale is told of a queen who searched relentlessly for the meaning of perfection. She read each book available but none seemed to satisfy and fully explain what true perfection is when viewed from all angles. In the end, she realized the fickleness of the concept.
I also liked the book’s coherency. It barely had any grammatical issues and the structure was well-crafted with a set format for each chapter. First, the author defined the concept to be discussed in the chapter. This was followed by examples to explain further the meaning of the concept. These two features were followed by a story illustrating and discussing the topic. Finally, there was a quote at the end of each section that summarized the chapter’s main message.
In a world divided between factions of tribes, race, gender and class, Check Your Reality by Brian M. Keltner is certain to resonate among many readers who will be courageous enough to accept the limitation of their perceptions and work towards self-awareness and accepting diversity. I rate it 4 out of 4 stars.
Check Your Reality
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