- Format: Kindle Edition
- File Size: 858 KB
- Print Length: 218 pages
- Publisher: Penguin Books; Reprint edition (Sept. 24 2002)
- Sold by: Penguin Group USA
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00N1KJ76E
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Customer Reviews: 551 customer ratings
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #69,463 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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The Art of Possibility: Transforming Professional and Personal Life Kindle Edition
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Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.
If that sounds a little too airy-fairy for you, don't be put off; this is no mere self-improvement book, with a wimpy mandate to simply transform its readers into "nicer" people. Instead, it's a collection of illustrations and advice that suggest a way to change your entire outlook on life and, in the process, open up a new realm of possibility. Consider, for example, the practice of "Giving an A", whether to yourself or to others. Not intended as a way to measure someone's performance against standards, this practice instead recognises that "the player who looks least engaged may be the most committed member of the group", and speaks to their passion rather than their cynicism. It creates possibility in an interaction, and does away with power disparities to unite a team in its efforts to produce an outcome. Or consider "Being the Board," where instead of defining yourself as a playing piece, or even as the strategist, you see yourself as the framework for the entire game. In this scenario, assigning blame or gaining control becomes futile, while seeking to become an instrument for effective partnerships becomes possible.
Packed with such examples of personal and professional interactions, the book presents complex ideas on perception and recognition in a readable, useable style. The authors' combined, eclectic experience in music and painting (as well as family therapy and executive workshops) infuses their examples with vibrant colour and sound. The relevance to corporate situations and relationships is well developed, and they don't rely on dry case studies to do it. Indeed, this book assumes the readers' emotional intelligence and desire to engage, promising access to the rewards of that door-opening notion--possibility--in return. --S. Ketchum --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.
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Top international reviews
Ben Zander's background is in music and many of the scenarios in the book have a musical context. The message is always applicable to any situation though.
An open mind is essential if you are to consider where the ideas might take you. It has taken me two months to read it once because I wanted to appreciate each of the practices before moving on. In my case it couldn't be rushed. I'm about to begin reading it again and I expect to find different perspectives.
The book is jointly written with Rosamund Stone Zander who is a family therapist. Drawing equally on Rosamund's experience and that of Benjamin's conducting the world's orchestras, including the Boston Philharmonic, the book takes the form of a `How to' which instead of providing strategies to overcome life's obstacles, invites the reader into a world of opportunities.
With many references to his life in music in the form of analogy and experience, the book sets out a dozen practices which will bring the power of opportunity into your life. The practices are all simple. Each provides a story based explanation of its value drawn from the personal experience gained in the USA and UK by the two authors, and straightforward instruction on its use.
As always with the best advice, there is no rocket science here, though the book is more powerful for this, not less. For example `Giving an A' simply suggests that by approaching everyone we meet prepared and ready to see their best, this very act has already created energy to improve outcomes and create new opportunities in what they achieve. The book's graphic examples bring these simple approaches to life and provide evidence of the power of apparently simple ideas.
This is a powerful book. I read this book on a flight to Khartoum, and found some of the insights and examples quite moving. Occasionally the musical references left me struggling a little, but served to highlight a need to learn more and in no way diminished the value of the messages.
I heartily recommend this book to everyone determined to improve their lives and in search of simple ways in which to begin.
The best way to explain this title is that each chapter communicates an idea. Each idea is a new way of opening up possibility within your life. The book starts off with stripping away what is invented in your life and truely helps to realise that most of the material things around us are invented. The other ideas in the book follow on to describe plenty of ways to enhance and increase possibility from everyday situations.
The authors describe many of the ideas through examples of their experiences with the method. In fact, some of the examples within the book are the actual reason why they realised the idea in the first place.
The Art of Possibility is a great title for helping to realise how possibility can open up new chapters and be used as an approach to any situation in a positive light and in the hope to get more.
Full of stories of lives lived in an iconoclastic way, of applying radical ideas in practical experiments.
It's a brilliant book that will make you think twice about your life. And I don't say 'life' in a very self-help way, it's more about the way you conduct yourself. It won't solve a specific problem but it will open up a door of possibility.