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I Was Blind But Now I See: Time to Be Happy Paperback – 16 Sep 2011
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About the Author
James Altucher has written seven books, has written articles for every paper and website in the known universe. Has run several businesses. Has ridden the roller coaster of success and failure many times, in money, love, success, career, etc. Now he shares his experiences on how to get it right, unravel the brainwashing, and ultimately succeed and be happy.
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Top customer reviews
However, for someone such as myself, who reads all of his blog posts, it was disappointing at the lack of new content in the book. Most of its content is rehashed from blog posts, with few new concepts or ideas. So great if you've read one or two of his posts and want to know more. Not so great if you've already read his previous book and been following him for a while; you won't gain nearly as much.
There are the occasional beautiful nuggets in the form of perfectly formed sentences - simple one-liners that you can store for use later. These are the lines, or quotes, that we all come out with when someone asks for advice. I'm sure they've been said before but time will probably attribute them to JA. He's no Steven Covey or Antony Robbins and that's a good thing. There's none of their fluffy positive thinking, just honesty. The guy looks like a geek so I can relate to that ;)
I have a small problem with the Spirituality component of The Daily Practice because I'm an atheist. There's a small amount of text mentioning God but not too much. He's pretty clear that Spirituality doesn't have to be about religion so I suppose I'll have to explore how I find my spirituality - an interesting intellectual challenge if nothing else. Research has shown that Praying does no good for the person you're praying for but it does do good for the person doing the praying... All this makes you think and that, to me, is a successful book.
A work colleague pointed me in the direction of Seth Godin when I mentioned JA and I'm currently reading his free PDF entitled Brainwash. The tenet is the same as JAs - we've been led to believe that we need to fit in with the life that's been prescribed to us. We go to college, get a job, get a huge mortgage, work for 50 years in a boring job and then retire. This system we were brainwashed into believing has failed. In a way its failure is our opportunity: An opportunity to re-invent ourselves.
He rants about the American system A LOT. Some of it is relevant to the wider western capitalist world but a lot isn't. I don't care if America has a President or not. I think the UK shouldn't have a queen but that's a different argument ;)
Like another reviewer pointed out: you can read everything on his blog but I'm still glad I got the book.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
I'm sure that the experience James backs his ideas on are sound, but all too familiar for those of us already past our 40's. I didn't find anything new or worthy of sharing with friends or family or even here on this review. However, I will say, James' dedication to helping others is obvious and commendable.
James, only as another experienced human could tell you, find someone to edit your material. Even if it's copy/paste from a blog or anywhere else, a published book needs to be well edited. I'm only talking about grammar and punctuation. The flow of your material is pretty good and the information is well presented and only once felt a little 'lost'. It comes across as self edited which rarely works well unless you've shelved the book for 6 months first.
Although a bit raw, this was informational, helpful, and hopefully more and more people will start to understand the shift in perception that is needed to make the move from living in hell, to living in peace. Good luck!
The first post I read was about entrepreneurship and I bookmarked the site looking forward to more inspiration. But what I ended up reading was post after post from James not only about small biz but about struggling with demons, working to be happier, going after what you want and not always following the herd of sheep. James writes from the MOST HONEST place I have ever read on a blog. So may people on social media/blogs try to build themselves up into the Guru of the Month. James is just honest.
I really enjoyed this book as it takes a lot of what he talks about on the blog and expands on it. I'm still not convinced on the whole "not owning a home" and "don't send your kids to college right out of high school" plan. But I am willing to listen. This isn't a self help book but I absolutely will be a better person now that I have read it. Not only to the world but to myself.
James, you rock!
Altucher's on a soapbox you may or may not agree with, but he'll make you think. He starts with a poignant memory -- Christian and Jewish boys facing off on a playground -- and asks, "why would six-year-olds care enough about something 2000 years old to fight about it? It's because from an early age on, we're brainwashed about almost every single belief we hold dear."
I have to agree with him there, but just as often I didn't buy in. For instance, if you're one of the unlucky dupes stuck in a day job and can't quit this very instant, make yourself competitive by sucking up to your boss, getting to work two hours ahead of him, and giving him credit for all your bright ideas. Is this the 1950s?
Altucher calls attention to his mistakes and makes myriad typos, as others have pointed out: "As I write this I see I misspelled 'guarantee' in the sentence before this one. I'm not even going to correct it. Because in the next version of the American Dictionary they will include 'gurantee' and say as the definition: 'see "guarantee."' Because that's the way I roll."
He also calls BS on the Law of Attraction and personal finance (Rhonda Byrne and Suze Orman fans, don't bother), and tells how to deal with crappy people (some of the best advice I've read).
Why did I love this book? Because it's a slush pile of brain teasers, stunning advice, and passionate polemics that comes across as 100% inspired and genuine. You'll need to sort for yourself.
For someone like me, who's not familiar with Altucher's blog, it's a great way to get up to speed before jumping on the rollercoaster with him.