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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 12 October 2012
I selected the Einstein quotation to serve as the title of this review because I became convinced long ago that people and the lives they live tend to be the result of the decisions they make. In casinos and in competitive athletics, for example, individuals can be "on a roll" or in what Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi characterizes as "flow." We can't miss, we can't lose, the force is with us. However, that same force can also produce negative, sometimes disastrous results.

Alice Schroeder selected The Snowball as a title for her biography of Warren Buffett because, when he was a boy growing up in Omaha, he observed a large ball-like shape rolling down a hill, gaining both size and speed as it moved along. He immediately recognized its implicit power. Positive compound interest remains among his core principles. For millions of others, negative compound interest (e.g. on credit card debt, "upside-down" mortgages) has created very serious problems.

For me, Darren Hardy's most important point in this book is this: All of the decisions people make (however "small" they may be) can have positive results if those decisions are guided and informed by what he calls The Compound Effect principle. Conversely, a minor cut that becomes infected and is neglected could eventually result in major surgery, perhaps even an amputation. In fact, Hardy insists - and I agree - there are no "minor" or "small" decisions if their potential implications and consequences are ignored. These are among the subjects that Hardy addresses in his book:

o How to win--every time! The No. 1 strategy to achieve any goal and triumph over any competitor, even if they're smarter, more talented or more experienced.
o Eradicate bad habits that are preventing or delaying success (however defined)
o Install and master the few key disciplines required for major breakthroughs of achievement
o Motivate yourself to do what you really don't want to do...but must do, to succeed.
o Initiate the "elusive, awesome force of momentum" and then sustain it, especially during hard times
o Adopt and then accelerate the secrets of superachievers

At the conclusion of Chapters 1-6, he provides an admonition to "Put the Compound Effect to Work for You" by following through on a "Summary of Action Steps." I commend Hardy for his frequent, insistent, at times passionate reminders of how difficult, REALLY difficult it is to replace bad habits (e.g. purchases to accommodate instant gratification) and bad influences (especially people). I presume to add my own voice: All of his recommendations are crystal clear and easy to understand. (There isn't a single brilliant insight among them, nor does he make any such claim.) It is also true that all of his recommendations require painful self-sacrifices as well as a steadfast, indeed tenacious commitment. He agrees with the Yoda: "Do or do not. There is no try."

All that said, there is some "good news" worth sharing that will provide a context, a frame-of-reference for personal sacrifices, replacing bad habits and bad influences with good ones, detailed documentation of spending, fear, pain (if not terror), embarrassment, and frustration. From a source I do not recall, there is what is identified as "The Magic Penny" example of The Compound Effect. Here's the situation: You are given a choice between $3-million in cash now or a single penny that doubles in value each day during a 31-day period. Which would you take? Hardy discusses it and other examples in Chapter 1. My point now is that there are no magic pennies, silver bullets, etc. However, there is wisdom of priceless value and much of it is in this unassuming but cordial as well as hard-hitting book. If you aren't as determined to achieve success (however defined) as much as Darren Hardy is determined to help you do it, then you can await divine intervention.
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on 29 May 2013
I think almost anyone would find something positive to take from this book and implement in their lives. Much of the content is plain common sense, however sometimes it's good to see illustrations of how making small changes now can make a big impact on the future. The author seems authentic and really driven, and this enthusiasm makes the book a good read. Despite recent events, the Lance Armstrong quotes are still relevant.
This book can help bring hope and focus to anyone who is struggling with making their life a better place to be, even in adverse circumstances. The key is to action on the content. But as many changes can be small it's not about a painful upheaval of any kind - it shows how to pace changes in the parts of your life you can control, which can really create greater change over time. It's not a quick fix, but if you commit to it then you'll reap the rewards is the central message.
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on 8 January 2016
This is a good read for anyone wanting to get ahead in life. I read this after Jeff Olson's Slight Edge as I bought them together . Because of this, I skipped several pages at a time because the message is identical and even uses simular phrases.

The only reason why I didn't give this book the full 5 stars was - the constant promotion of the authors products and referals to his website. As one of the key points in the book was to 'save money and stop spending. Lost only one star though as the cause is for self improvement and learning after all. Some great - easy to follow and do pointers. It would be impossible not to see a life improvement which will grow (compound effect) just by following a single piece of advice within the book
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on 24 July 2016
I bought this book as I was recommended by a friend. I have read it twice and pass it on to my elder kids as I think it is a superb eye opener. Some people might think this book is only for business people but I will recommend this book to anyone.

It helps you understand how a great habit kept consistent will bring you very far. I will also recommend this book to those who are thinking to lose weight in the long term.

The way Darren Hardy portrays his own example in real life is an eye opener.
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on 10 September 2011
I found the book, ironically, to be a bit unfocused and scattered. It is also simply a rehash of the things we hear over and over again. After reading this book I read the original - Napoleon Hill's The Laws of Success, in its new revised edition - and found that that book was much more inspirational, motivational and practical. Despite it being over 75 years old!

This book is not horrid, it is just a bit pointless in the face of other more complete works.
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on 4 March 2013
If ever you wanted a simple and powerful formula to motivate you to your dreams and goals then this is the best book I have read by far. Not complex, no excuse there. Not academic, easy to read on a bus or coffee shop, Not vague but step by step straight to the point. You know its time to stop making excuses when you read this book, as there are no decent excuses left that Mr Hardy hasn't already heard before. So now its just up to you. .. Of course you could just put the book down as a simple read, and then I suspect that you must have skipped a couple of crucial pages.

If you decide to implement the strategies suggested in the book as I have, you will be even more impressed with just how simple it is to be the better version of yourself. Thanks for the wake up call Mr Hardy. I feel SENSATIONAL
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on 11 January 2013
I read this book after someone recommended it and have to say it was an overall enjoyable experience. None of the concepts and techniques presented by Darren Hardy are revolutionary, they're all tried and tested methods. However, he brings them all together into a straightforward, easy to grasp manner and encourages the reader to make an immediate start. The only slight issue I have with the book are the references to Lance Armstrong. We now know that Armstrong was stripped of his Tour De France titles due to the doping accusations and subsequent findings. Unless Armstrong is drammatically cleared of any wrong doind then the references should be revised in any new releases. This is because there is the slightest chance that a given reader might assume it's necessary to take cheating or illegal measures to gain an advantage. Just saying! Anyway, buy the book, read it thoroughly and start putting in action whatever of the approaches works for you. i'm already realising some of the benefits.
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on 27 January 2016
Love this book and the simple message it is sending out - so logical but so many people do not follow this advice. I consciously remember the compound effect of any action when the going gets tough! If you want to make changes in your life, and I mean REALLY WANT to then read this book!
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on 26 February 2015
We live in the era of fast results (or hope of fast results), evrybody expects to open a business and get rich overnight or to eat 2 healthy meals and run 2 miles and have a 6 pack , this book shows you that constant steady progress wins the race. And long term investments (money/stock/real estate/healthy eating/working out PAYS of but IN TIME) briliant book it's in my top 15 books that evrybody should read and i read many books(4/month usually).
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on 1 May 2011
If you need a straight to the point guide on how to improve your life, then you cannot go wrong by starting with The Compound Effect. All the advice you will find in this book has been around for ages, therefore do not expect to learn anything new, yet credit to the writer who has managed to put together this material in an easy to follow manner.

You will learn to create positive habits, eliminate procrastination and set yourself challenging and achievable goals. We also bought the accompanying CD's, therefore, if you enjoy listening, opposed to reading, then you are in for a treat with the extra material and insights on offer.

It's also clear after reading the book and listening to the CD that the author walks his talk and more importantly, he sounds as though he is extremely passionate and sincere about sharing his teachings with the rest of us.
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