The Power of Focus: What the World's Greatest Achievers Know about The Secret of Financial Freedom and Success
Canfield and coauthors Mark Hansen and Les Hewitt recommend that we concentrate on our strengths, set goals, and focus on them. Canfield and Hansen created the Chicken Soup for the Soul series, which now has 27 titles and has sold 47.5 million copies. They have added new ingredients to their pot; their mix now includes a weekly television show, electronic games, and even refrigerator magnets. All the while, though, their basic stock has remained the same: inspirational, heartwarming, and homey stories that make people feel good. Now they detail 10 "focusing strategies" they say they used to get their first books published and to build on their success. The authors include new stories and their own personal anecdotes to show the importance of having successful habits, creating balance, maintaining confidence, building excellent relationships, etc. - David Rouse
Amazon.com Customer Reviews:
Best self-help book which is acutally useful.
By El Barto (Houston, TX USA)
I consider this book as the best self-help book which is actaually useful for me. Most self-help books use Top-down approach. You first set up the goals in your life, and solve the problem of how you may achieve them. While this works most of the time in building software, I do not think that it does in real life. Also, software engineers are trained to design software using top down approach. On the other hand, normal beings like us are not trained to construct our lives in top down approach. I am not saying that this approach is not good. It may work for highly motivated and well deciplined people.
The book, Power of Focus, uses bottom up approach. So, the small things, concrete, do-able things first. The authors tell us to find out our bad habits, and change them one by one. Their stories were so convincing that it looked so easy. And it was really easy. One problem I had with other books' top down approach was that I didn't feel comfortable in setting or writing down so-called "great ambitions". But I felt very comfortable with this book's bottom up approach.
Out of Focus...Out of Reach
By Robert Morris (Dallas, Texas) - See all my reviews
Long ago when I was a child, I purchased a large box of Crackerjacks and the prize within was a small plastic magnifying glass. I recall using it to burn holes in leaves which demonstrated the power of focus. I thought about that as I read this book. Here is one of its core concepts: "Negative habits breed negative consequences. Successful habits create positive rewards." I agree. However, as the authors fully understand, replacing negative habits with successful habits is very difficult. A sincere and sustained commitment is imperative. However, as the authors of this volume correctly point out, something else is also needed: focus. "You must invest most of your time every week doing what you do best, and let others do what they do best....When you focus most of your time and energy doing the brilliant things you are truly brilliant at, you eventually reap big rewards." Within organizations, this is the essence of alignment: getting the right people in the right places, doing what they do best to achieve whatever the organization's goals may be.
Canfield, Hansen, and Hewitt recommend and then explain ten different strategies to develop and sustain successful habits, focus on strengths, see "The Big Picture," balance career with personal life, build excellent relationships with others, eliminate (or at least significantly reduce) fear and anxiety, ask for what you want (the authors provide a seven-point system to achieve prosperity), sustain consistent persistence, take decisive and appropriate action, and finally, how to simplify one's life without compromising one's purposes. A set of specific "Action Steps" is provided at the end of each chapter. If implemented effectively, the ten strategies can enable almost anyone to "hit" their business, personal, and financial "targets" and in many (if not most) instances "with absolute certainty." First, however, each reader must determine what her or his "targets" are. My own experience suggests that, over time, people change their targets. Also, whatever they may be at any given time, the little rascals tend to be moving.
In their Final Words, the authors note that "there are no shortcuts to building a life of substance. It's an ongoing process. It takes time, real effort and a desire to become more than you already are. It's a worthy challenge. However, your biggest challenge starts tomorrow. How will you apply what you have learned between the covers of this book?" As suggested earlier, reading this this book reminded me of a large box of Crackerjacks. The material it provides reminded me of that little plastic magnifying glass. Both the box and the book offer the same "gift": an understanding and appreciation of the power of focus. I join with the authors in wishing their readers "an abundance of health, joy, and prosperity in the years ahead."
If at all possible, read this book in combination with Bossidy and Charan's Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done; Hammer's The Agenda: What Every Business Must Do to Dominate the Decade; Covey's The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People; and finally, Connors, Smith, and Hickman's The Oz Principle: Getting Results Through Individual and Organizational Accountability.
A well written and compleat life improvement book
By ServantofGod - See all my reviews
I expected to read something that just taught me how to get more focused and thus perform better on a specific task. Instead I read a life improvement book with good stories (many drawn from Chicken Soup of the Soul books), wise sayings, well organised action plans and interesting comics presented in the strategic steps/order/chapter preached by the authors as follows:-
1. Your habits will determine your future
2. It's not hocus-pocus. It's all about focus
3. Do you see the big picture?
4. Building excellent relationships
5. The confidence factor
6. Ask for what you want
7. Consistent persistence
8. Taking decisive action
9. Living on purpose
You might think this is just a normal self help book. Well, it is. As the devil is in the details, so is the angel. With the authors' outstanding writing and story telling skills shown by the Chicken Soup series, in case you want to read a compleat self help book, you will be satisfied.
Below please find some of my favorite passages for your reference.
Quality is not an act. It is a habit. pg 11
Remember if you want a different result, do something different. pg 95
The one thing that separates winners from losers is, winners take action. - Anthony Robbins pg 100
There are essentially two things that will make you wiser - The books you read and the people you meet. - Charles T Jones pg 101
If there is something to gain and nothing to lose by asking, by all means ask. - W. Clement Stone pg 185
God gives every bird its food, but He does not throw it into the nest. pg 260
I'm not here just to make a living. I'm here to make a difference. - Helice Bridges pg 282