Category Archives: Self-Help

The Four Horsemen of the Investor’s Apocalypse: The Four Evils That Will Crush Your Portfolio, and How to Fight Them by Robert J. Klosterman, CFP

The Four Horsemen of the Investor's Apocalypse: The four evils that will crush your portfolio, and how to fight them

Reviewed by Douglas R. Cobb

The Four Horsemen of the Investor’s Apocalypse by Robert J. Klosterman, CFP, is a book that all investors should read and learn from, as it deals with four of the deadliest hindrances to investors finding success in their efforts to preserve wealth and maintain growth over time. The book is rightly subtitled “The Four Evils That Will Crush Your Portfolio, and How to Fight Them,” because the four hindrances that Klosterman details have often caused the best laid plans of investors to go terribly astray.

Ox Herding: A Secular Pilgrimage by Jackie Griffiths

Ox Herding

Reviewed by Timea Barabas

If you are looking for a different kind of a travel journal, you might want to take a look at Ox Herding: A Secular Pilgrimage by Jackie Griffiths. Unlike the classical books of this genre, this novel takes you on an expedition to the previously untouched continents of a person’s psyche.

Just as the title suggests, this book is based on the Ten Ox Herding Pictures which are as Jackie Griffiths explains herself: “a Zen Buddhist philosophical classic that depicts the journey to enlightenment through ten distinct and progressive stages of spiritual development”. In fact the author gives us a brief description of these stages in the Introduction section. Although she admits to having doubts about her interference in the reader’s comprehension of her text (“I write this introduction with great trepidation, acknowledging that I’m running the risk of attracting attention to the finger pointing at the moon, rather than to the moon itself”), I find that some of the associations and explanations she puts forward here are necessary. The most useful intervention she had was introducing the reader to the Ten Ox Herding Pictures. Without this, much of the meaning of the novel would have been lost to me. However, going into the actual plot of the novel in this context seemed unnecessary to me.

Laughing in the Rain: Self-Care for the Storms of Life by Hillary Saffran

Laughing in the Rain

Reviewed by Lisa Brown-Gilbert

Permeated with challenges life often presents those moments when the stress rains down on you, drenching you in anxiety, fears, and woes. Instead of drowning in your personal sorrows, why not be your own savior and at least have the necessary knowledge for weathering the stress deluge. One fantastic place to start with your self–help, stress-relieving journey is by reading Hillary Saffran’s Laughing in the Rain – Self Care for the Storms of Life. This book is a creative, relatable, fun filled read that sparks many laugh aloud moments, combined with sagacious advice, and reasonably viable stress relief tips.

What Makes Olga Run?: The Mystery of the 90-Something Track Star and What She Can Teach Us About Living Longer, Happier Lives by Bruce Grierson

What Makes Olga Run

Reviewed by Caryn St. Clair

Olga Kotelko took up track and field at the age of 77. That’s right-when most people are slowing down, this dynamo of a woman ramped up her physical activity to an almost unheard of level. When What Makes Olga Run? was written, Olga was 93 years old and to the point in her track career that there were not always other competitors in her bracket so sometimes she competed in the men’s division. When competing, her times (or distances in the field events) were often so good that not only did she win and set records, she would have won and set records in two age brackets below hers. The author takes readers through a series of steps as scientists try to determine why. What makes this woman so special, so strong and so fast? What gives her the stamina and body of a person decades younger?

111 Inspirational Life Purpose Quotes & Exercises to Find Your Purpose in Life by Suzanne Strisower

111inspirationallifepurposequotes&exercisesReviewed by Douglas R. Cobb

Do YOU know what your “life purpose” is? If not, do you want to know how to find it, and learn how to use your true potential to fulfill your purpose and life? A perfect road map or guide to discovering what your life purpose really is and how to live to your full potential is Suzanne Strisower’s inspirational and extremely informative workbook, 111 Inspirational Life Purpose Quotes & Exercises To Find Your Purpose In Life. This truly interesting and helpful book contains, as the title mentions, 111 inspirational quotes that you’ll want to commit to memory, and exercises on worksheets that provide a holistic step-by-step approach so that you can achieve your full potential and discover what your life purpose is.

Realizing that wisdom and insight into human nature and what we’re all here on this planet for has fascinated and intrigued people around the world since time immemorial, and that these philosophies and religions have helped seekers after the truth find answers for thousands of years, the author has created the exercises in her workbook based on them. She also incorporates her knowledge of psychology, making her book a sort of GPS to locating what your life purpose is. The worksheets help you get attuned to this purpose, and they dare you to discover the role you play in the divine order of life.

What are some examples of these quotes and worksheets? Are they really that useful, you might ask? We all from time-to-time question why we’re here on Earth, and why we have been born in the era and place we find ourselves in. The exercises can be incredibly useful to guiding us towards this knowledge. They cover a wide range of subjects, each worksheet designed for a specific purpose to aid us in our quest.

In the first section of the book, “Your Hierarchy of Needs,” readers learn what their universal needs are, and how many of them you have personally met. This section is designed to help you recognize what your developmental and chronological goals and purpose are, and then to synthesize these insights. Worksheets in this section include ones such as “Your Numerological Life Purpose,” “Your God’s Eye View Life Purpose,” and “Your Mission and Calling Life Purpose.” Suzanne often provides the links of web sites where you can find out things like the meaning of your name based on numerology. The question that concludes the “Numerology” worksheet is: “What do you think is your purpose based on Numerology?”

Each area of your life is taken into account, like your career and professional side, your spiritual development, your physical health and well being, and your peer relationships. Our life purpose(s) are often multifaceted, combining one’s personal, professional, and spiritual goals. The author gets into this topic also, and the importance we place upon knowing what our life purpose is and in attaining it.

Quotes from famous authors, religious figures, etc. are at the top of each worksheet. The quotes were chosen to correspond to each topic. For instance, the quote at the top of “Exercise #21 – Your Meaningful Activities Life Purpose,” relates to these meaningful activities:

“Engaging in meaningful activities promotes bliss. Activities that provide meaning do so by engaging your values, what you feel is important. When uour activities are important, you’re doing something that makes a difference. You are infused with a sense of purpose, which lifts you above the mundane and dreary.”

111 Inspirational Life Purpose Quotes & Exercises by Suzanne Strisower is an excellent resource and guide to difining whatever your life purpose might be. There are so many things about our true natures that seem hidden from us, though if we’re guided in the right direction, it’s possible to learn some of life’s deepest mysteries. Discover your own life purpose, and take the first step to achieving important goals in your life by checking out this remarkable book today.

Disclosure in Accordance with FTC Guidelines 16 CFR Part 255

Travels of the Mind by Ettore Grillo

Travels of the MindReviewed by Chris Phillips

Grillo has written a unique book. By following the physical travels of friends and relatives, finally of his own, he discovers the help he needs to overcome paranoid schizophrenia. Although each of these travels, trips, involve different types of people traveling in different circumstances, they each teach a lesson about how to handle personal difficulties for life.

There are characters aplenty. Grillo, himself, introduces this journey and then finishes his self development by a journey of his own. The major influence in his life is his uncle, Salvatore. Salvatore’s friend, the rich man, Mario, relates his life journey as a vacation in Great Britain, London to be exact. The third trip is Salvatore’s own journey as a volunteer for an aid agency in Africa. The fourth tale, Lorenzo travels to Medujorge for intense martial arts training but it turns into a journey of discovery, lessons learned from an Imman and from the martial arts instructors in Japan.

From each tale and from each trip Grillo learns to overcome the very symptoms his mental illness imposes on his mind and his actions. He hears the lessons, applies them as they are by the teller and then makes the transition with each of those into a better understanding of his own difficulties and how to overcome them.

The Keys to Joy-Filled Living by Robert C. Jameson

The Keys to Joy-Filled Living by Robert C. JamesonReviewed by Teri Davis

How many people wished that life came with an instruction book? Here it is. THE KEYS TO JOY-FILLED LIVING is that book. What will make you happy? Do each of us have mannerisms or bad habits that prevent us from being happy? Are there things that we can do that could make us much happier and more content in our daily lives? What does it take to actually feel fulfillment in our lives?

THE KEYS TO JOY-FILLED LIVING is about us connecting with others and ourselves. All of us have choices and our choices are what determine who we are and our personal happiness. Sometimes these choices are not instinctive and we need some guidance into the steps that can give our lives more purpose and meaning. This gives each of us the opportunity to find our purpose and to achieve our personal fulfillment.

The author ‘s approach is simple and down to earth. He believes that each of us can improve ourselves while improving our relationships with others. He believes in self-talk and in how to control your emotions in a positive manner that can benefit you and others. This is the book that guides each of us to a higher level in all our relationships that most people only dream about or believe only exist in fiction.

Many people have never experienced these basic foundations for a fuller and contented life. THE KEYS JOY-FILLED LIVING allows everyone to know these basic life skills lessons that we missed in our developing years.

The author, Robert C. Jameson, MFT is an experienced Marriage, Family Therapist. His approach helps everyone to better approach the challenges of life and how to focus your thoughts on the positive aspects. He currently resides in California.

All of us at times need life’s instruction manual. You’ll find that the name of the book is THE KEYS TO JOY-FILLED LIVING.

Disclosure in Accordance with FTC Guidelines 16 CFR Part 255

He Blew Her a Kiss by Angie Pechak Printup and Kelley Stewart Dollar

Reviewed by Nancy Eaton

He Blew Her a Kiss Angie Pechak Printup and Kelley Stewart DollarHave you ever received a sign from someone who has passed away? When you received this sign, did you think it was just a coincidence or did you believe it was possible a loved one has been trying to contact you?

He Blew Her a Kiss includes several short stories that all have to do with this very subject – receiving a sign or message from a loved one who has passed. The message might be one to let you know they are doing fine or a loved one might be trying to contact you because they know you need their help and guidance.

God Never Blinks: 50 Lessons for Life’s Little Detours

Reviewed by Susan Reimers

God Never Blinks:  50 Lessons for Life's Little Detours by Regina BrettThere is no shortage of inspirational books. There’s not even a shortage of good inspirational books. But every now and again, hidden beneath the glut of all the goods and the also-rans, is the great inspirational book. God Never Blinks: 50 Lessons for Life’s Little Detours by Regina Brett is, in my opinion, one of the great inspirational books.

Its greatness doesn’t lie in some new message. In fact, Brett immediately admits that most of the “lessons” are the same ones the sages have been handing down from generation to generation since time immemorial. The sameness doesn’t dilute them, though, when repeated by Brett, whose conversational style and willingness to share her life story makes each one seem new. It is her life story, after all, that was the genesis of her column in the Cleveland Plain Dealer about the 45 lessons life taught her, and when she turned 50, she expanded that list by five.

Brett is quite open with her life story. She was one of 11 children born and raised in America’s Midwest. She began drinking at 16 and by 21 she was an unwed mother. She sought sobriety, applied herself and received her bachelor’s degree at 30. Still, Brett believed that God blinked when she was born and never knew she arrived. Ten years later she met a man who loved her unconditionally and she finally married, only to have her happiness threatened a year later when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. She valiantly battled the disease and her own remaining demons. She even went on to earn her master’s degree in religious studies. By 45, when she wrote the column, she realized that God never blinks. She was right where she was supposed to be, and so are we.

Smoking: 201 Reasons to Quit by Muriel L. Crawford

Reviewed by Nancy Eaton

smokingI am a non-smoker. However, I have lost several family members and friends due to smoking related illnesses.

Jack Klugman has written the foreward for Smoking: 201 Reasons to Quit. As we know, Jack was diagnosed with cancer. He received an earlier warning from his doctor that he had a precancerous condition on his vocal chords. The doctor told him that if he stopped smoking, the condition could get better. Jack did stop smoking for three months. When the doctor told him his condition was better, he left the office and the first thing he did was purchase a pack of cigarettes. We all know what happened after that!

Muriel worked as a lawyer for many years for a life and health insurance company. While in this position, she studied medical files relating to insurance claims. It did not take her very long to realize that many of the illnesses were related to the use of tobacco.