I am in awe of this book. Absolute awe! Strong words for sure and words I haven't used before in any of my 80+ reviews, here on Amazon, of the best of the best books I have read in the last fifteen months.
I thoroughly enjoyed author Mike Robbins' first book, on the subject of "appreciation." As I wrote in my review for that book, good topic, fine book and an impressive debut for an author of any age, and especially impressive debut for a young author.
For his second book, Mike Robbins selected a much tougher, but even more important topic. In a world where -- every day -- we read about the escapades of two-faced business executives, politicians, and sports "stars," a serious book on the subject of "authenticity" is timely and important to each of us, as well as to our society. But, what a tough subject about which to write. Compared to many other personal development areas, books or even articles on this subject are much rarer. Making it even tougher, claiming to be an expert on authenticity seemingly would invite a hailstorm of personal challenges as to "how real are you Mike Robbins?"
Mike Robbins' approach is NOT to claim to be the world expert on authenticity, or the world's role model for authenticity. Instead, Robbins has written a heart-warming story of one man's search to understand and constructively use the power of authenticity. There is no preaching at the reader, instead the style is more like a fireside chat with a very close friend...much like the Cheryl Richardson style of writing I so enjoy.
Initially, this book was not an easy read for me. The subject of authenticity does not lend itself to easy homilies. My first read through was interesting and worthwhile...but certainly not life changing. But, then the magic started to happen. Suddenly, I was seeing authenticity issues in my everyday live...with my consulting clients, with friends, and even with my own actions. That sent me back to the book to read it more carefully, and to intellectually challenge Robbins' hypothesis as to the five principles that he believes most impact authenticity. Then, I challenged the eight stars in a coaching group in which I participate to a mini-debate about the power of authenticity and its impact on everyday inner peace. Suddenly, the wisdom of Robbins had unlocked an exciting new world for me.
As a voracious reader, I am often reading thoughtful books on business and personal development issues. The best add to my knowledge, and do so in an enjoyable manner. A rare few stretch my thinking to delightful and useful new dimensions of life. This book has done that, and much more. I have already seen impressive results from the wisdom of this book, and I have just scratched the surface of understanding the ways that true authenticity can improve one's life.
This is the kind of subject you would expect the likes of Wayne Dyer, Eckhart Tolle, etc. to be serving up for us, not a relatively young second time author. Mike Robbins, I am in awe of what you have accomplished with this book and of what I expect will be the impact of this book.
One final note: Looking to just burnish your image? Be forewarned that this book should not be confused with a marketing or PR primer. This is a Debbie Ford, hold up the mirror to the reader style book...done with beautiful compassion and genuine humility by this author. This is a wonderful primer for a better life, not a quick-fix image makeover tutorial.