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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very useful, if somewhat out of date
Let me begin by saying that I would recommend this book. The exercises in most of the sections (particularly 'Who am I?', 'How satisfied am I?', 'What changes do I want?') were very helpful in helping me to identify what is important to me in life, what I feel is currently missing from my job (as well as, to some extent, my personal life). The book is written in a very...
Published 19 months ago by jennphd

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Okay book
The greatest sentence in this book was:

If you don't take charge of your life you will be a pinball machine and other people will control you.
Published 16 months ago by Matas Milukas


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very useful, if somewhat out of date, 9 Feb 2013
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This review is from: Build Your Own Rainbow: A Workbook for Career and Life Management (Paperback)
Let me begin by saying that I would recommend this book. The exercises in most of the sections (particularly 'Who am I?', 'How satisfied am I?', 'What changes do I want?') were very helpful in helping me to identify what is important to me in life, what I feel is currently missing from my job (as well as, to some extent, my personal life). The book is written in a very motivational style and the exercises never feel like 'hard work' but make self-analysis and reflection very painless and even enjoyable.

I would recommend the book to anybody who wants to make a change, feels 'somehow' unhappy but can't quite work out why or what to do about it, or anyone who feels reasonably content but worries they might be missing out on something.

However. The book is now in its fourth edition, the last one having been published in 2009. Unfortunately, some parts of the book are now incredibly out of date. The book was first published in 1984 and most of the authors' research, statistics and, unfortunately, attitudes stem from the 1970s. I would suggest the publisher encourage the authors to make much more thorough updates to the next edition to bring the text in line with the 21st century. Section 2, 'Where am I now?' is particularly poor in this regard. This section discusses the life cycle e.g. how you might define success in your early 20s compared to your 50s etc. Unfortunately it contains a number of unforgivable references with regards to women. Reading this section, one would have thought 'career women' were women in their 40s working part-time as a secretary after decades spent at home as a wife and mother. In particular, the suggestion that 'The woman not married by age 29 used to - and maybe still does - feel embarrassed by it' (p. 73) made me howl with laughter! (Particularly since I am 31 and, needless to say, it has never occurred to me that marriage is something I should be thinking about.)

In addition, the information given with regards to career patterns (surely all careers are 'cyclical' now?), 'dual career families' and the employment market are also very dated now. For example, page 31 on 'Life and Career Management in the 1990s' includes the following sentence: '... in the foreseeable future, young people will be in high demand as there are fewer of you.' Not exactly in line with current prospects for youth/graduate employment!

So, overall, the book is embarrassingly out of date. However, the exercises to identify what is important to you and how you want to spend your life are still very valuable and I would recommend the book based on these. Just beware that the book also contains some 'time travel' back to life and attitudes of the 1970s. (The 'job families' identified in the appendix are also on the traditional side.) This is a great shame because a fully revised and updated edition would have a great deal to offer.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Really useful book, 8 Sep 2009
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Penny Jones (London) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Build Your Own Rainbow: A Workbook for Career and Life Management (Paperback)
I've been using this book in various ways since 1998 (!) and have always found its processes invaluable. Have recommended to lots of people who have all found it useful. I should be getting commission!
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Okay book, 26 May 2013
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This review is from: Build Your Own Rainbow: A Workbook for Career and Life Management (Paperback)
The greatest sentence in this book was:

If you don't take charge of your life you will be a pinball machine and other people will control you.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A genuinely helpful self-help book, 17 Aug 2012
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This review is from: Build Your Own Rainbow: A Workbook for Career and Life Management (Paperback)
This workbook is perfect for anyone who wants to change career, isn't happy in their job or hasn't yet found the career for them. It's also good if, like me, you are pretty certain you're on the right track but want to make sure of it and examine other possibilities.
It get's you to look at your interests and your values through a series of exercises, and then match them up with what you do in your life, and what you could do instead with regards to work and leisure time.

One exercise I particularly enjoyed involved working out exactly which job you would be most suited to (there is a very long list at the back of the book) by giving a pattern of letters depending on what you are most interested in/value the most. For me it came up with the exact same job I am currently working towards.

I thought that this book was very pro-active in its approach and a lot of the exercises were extremely useful. It is a little time consuming and not the sort of thing you could do in one afternoon, it took me a good few weeks. But it was well worth the time and effort!
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