06 October 2009

BOOK REVIEW – THE ME MYTH

I don’t tend to put up too many of my book reviews on my blog, but I felt that this one was so well written and personal that I would share it. It is written by  Ben Zipper, from the Australian Women and Leadership Forum – you can visit their website here – CLICK or read it here.

Book review: The Me Myth

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Book author: Andrew Griffiths

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

Like many of his peers in the professional development sphere, Andrew Griffiths has written a slew of books on everything from building your business to having a life in the doing.

Two things, however, set Andrew apart. First, his childhood origins are remarkable for the tragedy that he experienced. As an orphan growing up in Western Australia, Andrew survived neglect and abuse.

Second, this upbringing has clearly played a role in the kind of inspiring and motivating consultant that Andrew has become.

He is regularly described as contagiously positive, funny and endlessly enthusiastic. He has taken what life has thrown at him and grown from it rather than letting it overwhelm him.

It’s an outlook that is borne out in his latest book. In The Me Myth, he argues that we are brought down by the overarching attitude that ‘it’s all about me’.

Instead of being self-centred and self-focused in our search for answers, Andrew believes that we need to start looking outwards to find the greatest lessons in life.

Andrew argues his case both passionately and succinctly. He shares stories of his life with frankness as a launching point to provoke us to consider some of his more difficult challenges.

He takes us on the journey of being abandoned by his mother at the age of six months, and shows us the cathartic release he found when, as an adult, he was able to empathise with her difficult decision.

In the context of his tales of teenage delinquency, crime and drug abuse, we are called on to reflect on our own moral code.

Like the author’s life, The Me Myth is a remarkable book. On reading the short chapter on getting back to doing the things that you love, I had to put the book down and write my own list of passionate activities. With a small list that included doing jigsaws and hiking, I quickly realised that I was deeply fortunate to have read this book.

If anything, the book’s title does the contents a disservice. Absent in the title is the subtle paradox that by turning our attention away from our immediate, self-focused pleasures and desires, we can actually focus more on developing our larger, more significant selves.

Nonetheless, if sales of Andrew Griffith’s previous books are any indication, The Me Myth will likely find a wide audience.

In a milieu in which advertising and the media bombard us with constant pressures to tend to our own selves, The Me Myth ought to find a counterpoint to the hegemonic forces that surround us.

Our rating: 10/10

3 thoughts on “BOOK REVIEW – THE ME MYTH”

  1. What a splendid review~ and how encouraging to have one’s writing give another a “deeply fortunate” experience.

    I look forward to the read myself.

    And I don’t mind two Bullets in one week, me likes your version as one is not expected to pick them up to stab oneself with ~:-)

  2. Thanks Char – and yes, it is a beautiful experience and a humbling one. And I am glad that you don’t mind two bullets in the one week. All the best to you – I hope that life is treating you well and that you are having more than your fair share of beautiful moments.

    Cheers,

    Andrew

  3. Grace says:

    Hello Andrew
    Well I have not read all of your ‘Me Myth’ book but I totally agree with everything you are saying within its pages.
    If I had not moved on with my life in the late Eighties, I would be stuck within the pages of my history, with a husband that was abusive and cruel.
    I have moved on to some other project every time I felt I was stuck, with some interesting consequences believe me.
    For instance I left beautiful Cairns a few years ago, because I could not get work. Then two years ago at the age of 64 I started teaching, but I have not finished yet, because to return to my favorite town of Cairns, I need to Learn to Teach English to students of other languages, so that is my next step, which hopefully can be accomplished in August-September.
    Since the year 2000 I have been working on my autobiography, but even though it appears to be finished, I keep changing my path?

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Andrew Griffiths is Australia's #1 small business author with 12 best selling books now sold in over 60 countries. He's a writing and publishing expert, an international speaker and leading business advisor with over 20 years' experience. Andrew presents around the world and is considered an expert in entrepreneurship and an authority on building a profile. He is a thought leader through writing, publishing and speaking and is featured regularly in mainstream global media.

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