The Strengths Book: Discover How to be Fulfilled in Your Work and in Life by Sally Bibb
Disclaimer: This book was not on my original reading list. Instead, I was contacted to do a review and this book was gifted to me. This does not guarantee a positive review and my reviews remain 100% my honest opinion.
What The Strengths Book is about
As the title suggests, this book is helping you to identify and understand your strengths. It also looks at your weaknesses, but, as the title suggests, mainly focuses on your strengths.
The book explains how your strengths are formed as well as how you can utilise them in your work and in your life to help you achieve more and ultimately be more fulfilled.
For those that read my blog regularly, you’ll know that I am a follower of Gary Vaynerchuk, and a lot of what he teaches is also underwritten in this book.
Firstly, he talks about being self-aware – knowing what you are good at. The Strengths Book is based on helping you find exactly that.
Secondly, Gary promotes that you should ‘stop doing shit that you hate’, and again, this is echoed in the book. Sally Bibb doesn’t say it in quite that language, but she does explain that life is far too short for you to be frustrated whilst doing things that do not play to your strengths.
Now I don’t want to dumb this book down, but sometimes I feel as though it’s more about just finding what you enjoy doing. The author explains that if you find what you enjoy to do you’ll typically find a strength. Therefore, rather than this being a strengths book, I feel as though it’s more of a ‘what do you enjoy to do?’ book.
The Strengths Books design
It’s a workbook
The first thing that I noticed about this book was that it’s not really like a book at all. It’s got hard cardboard pages, it’s printed in a maroon coloured ink, the pages are cut to curve around the corners and it has a bookmark and elastic holder – it’s basically more like a workbook.
My housemate works in marketing and has done a lot of work within the print industry, therefore, when this book arrived he was very interested in it as well since the printing was so different compared to the usual nonfiction books that I receive
Going back to the point that I made about this being a workbook, you do have to read this book with either a pen or pencil at hand because there are exercises throughout this book that you need to complete in order to get the full value out of it.
Shoot the designer
Although I love the design of this book there is something that I find very weird.
On page 28 and 29 there are some exercises for you to carry out and there are lines for you to write something. However, you are not required to write anything in order to complete those exercises.
On the flip side of the coin, on page 40, there are more exercises that do require you to write something, but there is no space for you to do so.
So, when you need to write something there’s no space and when you don’t need to write anything, there’s space.
I’m assuming that this is just a little blip from the designer, so we can shoot him over that. But overall, we can give him a pat on the back, because other than this little error, the design of this book is very good.
I should note that not all of the activities require you to write something down. Some of them require you to stand up, to act something out or to think in a certain way to try and help you understand more about your strengths.
I like the way this book has been written because it has been put together like a blog post. And what I mean by that is that the paragraphs have been broken up so that they contain no more than 2-3 sentences.
If you do any type of content marketing, you will be advised to write in this way when you blog post because it’s very inviting for the reader. Whereas when you pick up a standard book, each line is usually filled with text and this can be quite overwhelming.
Who is this book best suited for
Although this book would be helpful to anyone, I feel as though it would be best suited for those who are just finishing school and are about to make those important decisions about what they would like to study for further education.
Now, I’m not quite sure how the educational system works over in the US, but here in the UK, at the age of 16, after students have finished their GSCE’s, they get to choose which subject they would like to study for further education. I feel as though this book would be perfect for those that are aged 15 -16 and are about to make those decisions.
This book will help them to understand more about themselves, more about there strengths, more about what they enjoy and ultimately help them to be more true to themselves when they decide what their chosen field of expertise will be.
If you are a parent, or you know a teenager, or if you are a teenager yourself, then this book is going to be worth its weight in gold for you.
My overall thoughts
If I’m completely honest, the book didn’t blow me away and it’s not one that I am going to raving about over and over again.
However, I think that it’s an interesting find – especially if you are one of those people that are trying to find out what it is that you want to do in life.
I do love the design. I like how it’s more of a workbook and it gets you involved as you’re reading. And because it’s only about 130 pages, it’s not going to take you long to get through. Therefore, I think that the time you invest in reading the book, and completing the exercises, is going to be worth it.
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