Book Review: The Art of Work

May 19, 2015


The Art of Work
Jeff Goins
240 pages
hard copy edition

From the Publisher:
The path to your life’s work is difficult and risky, even scary, which is why few finish the journey. This is a book about discovering your life’s work, that treasure of immeasurable worth we all long for. It’s about the task you were born to do.     

As Jeff Goins explains, the search begins with passion but does not end there. Only when our interests connect with the needs of the world do we begin living for a larger purpose. Those who experience this intersection experience something exceptional and enviable. Though it is rare, such a life is attainable by anyone brave enough to try. 

Through personal experience, compelling case studies, and current research on the mysteries of motivation and talent, Jeff shows readers how to find their vocation and what to expect along the way.

I received an advanced copy of this book and was pretty excited to read through it. I kinda have a thing for non-fiction books, I love them, I love reading self-help and motivational books too.  

I took my time reading it, which is rare for me. But I really kept a pencil in the book and kept marking sections and making notes in the margins.  This book really made me think, think about life and what I want out of it, and my goals and dreams.  Two years ago I never would have thought we would be owners of our own medical practice. It was something we talked about through school, but it wasn’t our goal to begin with. But there are moments I can’t deny, things that just divinely fall into place, and I know this is what we should be doing right now.  It’s hard. h-a-r-d, hard. But there is also some freedom of doing what we want to do.  We sacrificed 4 years of med school, 3 years of residency, and lots of moving our family around the country to get to this point. Seriously, it’s such a long story how we ended up here.  But I’m glad my husband can practice how he wants without anyone telling him how or what he should do.

I think motherhood can be a calling.  And I don’t think you need to give birth as a requirement for it to be your calling.  I think there are so many wonderful examples and women who mother my children in so many different ways. To me, I don’t think a calling has to be a “profession” that makes you money.  It’s about finding out what you enjoy and what you are good at.

I started my reading blog eight years ago.  I really loved reading and sharing what I was reading. I really loved talking about books.  But then life got in the way.  A couple months ago I was at the school cleaning (because I’ll do just about any part time job to help out where I can…starting a practice does not mean instantly rolling in the dough!)  when the idea came to me.  I should start the book blog again. I’m not saying that this book blog is my calling.  But I think it was an answer I was looking for. I needed this as an outlet. I do think reading and sharing what I read is something that I enjoy.  And like I said, I think that is exactly what this books is talking about.  Finding out what you enjoy and doing it.

“What makes a person successful, then, is not the luck, but what he or she does with it.  Opportunities come. The question is what will you do when they arrive?  Successful people are just as “lucky” as the unsuccessful.  They difference is they do something remarkable with their lucky moment while the rest of the world sits around, waiting for the next lucky streak to come.” – p.76

The book was inspiring and motivating.  And really made me think. And made me want to take action!  I really liked the chapter about bridges.  Finding your calling and acting on it can look a  lot less like a giant leap and more like building a bridge.

“When we think of someone pursuing a calling, we often picture a person who has it all together, someone who knows form the beginning what they were born to do.  They have a plan.  A person hears from God and becomes a priest.  A professional athlete who grew up kicking a ball around the yard becomes a world-class soccer player.  We picture someone who just knew what they were supposed to do with their lives, and, at the right time, did it.  But a calling doesn’t always work like that.  Sometimes, perhaps often it is messy. p 89

“Answering a call will somethings feel that way.  It won’t make sense and may even open you up to rejection and criticism, but in your heart you will know i’s right.  How?  There will be confirmations.  You will take a step, and things will happen.  Opportunities will reveal themselves. Through the words of others and even in the pit of your stomach you will know this is the path to take-not because it is easy or safe, but because it is right.” -p 99

The Art of Work is a great motivational read.  They have a good supportive Facebook group, as well as some workbooks and courses you can take through his website.  

I think it was interesting to read though, and think about what my calling may be.  I think there are a lot of different options and opportunities. I love lists…so reading this makes me want to sit down and make some lists and really think and ponder life. I think it’s something to do every couple years. My outlook on life is different than it was 5 years ago.  life changes.  It’s good to re-assess.  I am looking forward to working through some of the workbooks.

I received an extra copy of this book from the publisher for a giveaway!  I’m so excited to share this!  Leave a comment below and dream…what do you think your calling is?  Have you ever thought of that before?  If you want an extra entry visit my facebook page.  The contest will end Sunday night, and I’ll announce the lucky winner on Monday.

Final Score:

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