8 of 13 people found the following review helpful
A little underwhelming,
This review is from: Be Creative: Essential Steps to Revitalise Your Work and Life (Essential Steps) (Paperback)
Books on popular psychology tend to be pulled in two directions; partly towards the academic psychology route, and partly towards the 'mind, body, and spirit' route. I tend to prefer the former, hoping that ideas to improve my life are supported by comparisons with results from formal studies, or at least making new hypotheses based on previous research.
Unfortunately, this book felt a bit too much like it was drawing from the latter, with much emphasis on the 'relaxation exercise' detailed early in the book. The other exercises often fall broadly into the category of "get into the relaxed state - think about the subject matter - what thoughts are occuring?"
The only real support for the ideas that the authors have comes from a liberal sprinkling of quotes from prominent figures that they think supports their argument, but which often seem not entirely related to the matter being discussed. Credibility is hardly helped by the use of slightly cringeworthy catchphrases such as "surfing your inner-net". And making broad statements such as "it seems the brain is organised into three layers" don't seem to come with any support, except that obviously the rest of the book falls back on this assumption.
Additionally, many of the exercises won't be much use unless you first record them onto tape or get the version that comes with a cd. The nature of them means that you're expected to be relaxing and not reading, so unless you can memorise a page of text, audio is essential to make the most of what the book offers.
Compared to an Edward de Bono or even a Tony Buzan book, there is precious little of practical use here. The authors would probably claim that I only say this because I am unable to appreciate the benefits of their methods, and perhaps they are right. Either way, I prefer clear practical guidance to the variety of meditate-and-hope-for-the-best exercises on offer here.
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Initial post: 16 Jun 2011 10:03:11 BDT
Interesting. Try reading Iain McGilchrist's 'The Master and His Emissary: the divided brain and the making of the Western World' (Yale University Press, 2009) and you'll see Claxton and Lucas's book in a new light.
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