March 31, 2012
As I randomly opened this book to skim through it, I read this paragraph: “I wanted my book to be one that you could pick up at any time and open to any page and start reading. I wanted my readers to be able to remember its few ideas without much effort and without the need to flip back through the pages to find them. I wanted you to realize that we keep coming back to the same few solutions to all the problems we feel we have, and to begin to understand that life isn’t as complicated as we thought. Changing our experience of life is well within our grasp, but we must review and practice these few ideas again and again so that everyday life doesn’t steal them away before they become a natural part of who we are and how we operate.”
I was hooked and continued to read the rest of the book before returning to the beginning to read what I had first skipped over. True to his desire, the author has done just what he set out to do. In clear, straight-forward language Sterner reminds readers of some basic skills we each possess that will enable us to succeed in any endeavor—be it to improve our golf game, give up an unhealthy habit, or deepen our spiritual practice and align more fully with our true nature. Those skills include re-learning to love the process, cultivating patience, developing focus, and retraining old habits.
There is an old joke in which a young man, having just arrived in New York, asks a passerby how he gets to Carnegie Hall. And the answer he receives: “Practice, practice, practice.” Sterner turns the perception that practice is drudgery into an “aha” moment, when we realize that practice yields the power and skill to excel. In addition, he offers useful techniques as well as research and entertaining stories to drive the ideas home, so that one feels both informed and guided to achieve the results we desire. Most of all, this book is inspiring: an easy but profound read that will launch you to excellence.