How To Get What You Want by Nina Grunfeld

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How To Get What You Want by Nina Grunfeld

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Buy How To Get What You Want by Nina Grunfeld at Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

Category: Teens
Rating: 3.5/5
Reviewer: Jill Bone
Reviewed by Jill Bone
Summary: A self help book that will be useful or not depending on how enthusiastically the reader engages with it.
Buy? Maybe Borrow? Yes
Pages: 160 Date: September 2010
Publisher: Walker
ISBN: 978-1406323849

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How To Get What You Want is a self help book aimed at young people 'at a crossroads in their life', who are unsure what to do next. The author is a Life Coach who recognises that simply knowing what you want to do is half the battle towards achieving it, and sets out to help the reader identify who they are and what they really want using self awareness type exercises like the 'Balance Chart'. Later on the book deals with how to achieve those goals by giving advice on how to focus and think positively.

It's an admirable premise, but I'm a bit cynical about this sort of internal spin-doctoring. Shouldn’t we be teaching young people to be happy with who they are instead of pandering to society's obsession with reworking ourselves and external attainment? Also, the book's target audience seems a bit vague. Young adults may be alienated by the tone which seems geared towards teenage readers, though the opening paragraph states that the book is for people of university leaving age as well.

Some of Grunfeld's claims are overly optimistic e.g. 'one way of (finding out what you want from life) is by making a collage'. Won’t people feel inadequate who still don’t know, even after making a collage?

Having said all that, I did begin to warm to this book. I even tried some of the exercises myself, because I still don’t really know what I want to do, even at thirty! The Balance Chart made me realise that I wanted to do more to stay relaxed and build better relationships with my family. Writing a CV dated a year in the future strengthened my resolve to apply for an MA in creative writing.

Some of the advice in here could also be helpful. I liked the tip to imagine that nothing anyone says can ever be right or wrong in social situations, a way to overcome shyness and worries about not doing things 'properly'.

I’m going to carry on with the exercises in this book and may even 'get what I want' in the near future, so watch this space. If I’d read this book as a teenager I may have rejected it, though, which makes it difficult to review. How much one benefits from it will ultimately depend on how much energy they put in. The young people with the most to gain from How To Get What You Want may reject it as silly or patronising.

Nevertheless, I tentatively recommend this book to anyone who is stuck at the crossroads. I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to The Bookbag.

Further Reading Suggestion: You Can Be Amazing: Transform Your Life with Hypnosis by Ursula James will appeal to more mature young people.

Buy How To Get What You Want by Nina Grunfeld at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy How To Get What You Want by Nina Grunfeld at Amazon.co.uk


Buy How To Get What You Want by Nina Grunfeld at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy How To Get What You Want by Nina Grunfeld at Amazon.com.

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