Sunday, November 24, 2019

Books: "Do The Work" By Gary John Bishop

Do The Work: The Official Unrepentant Ass-Kicking, Change-Your-Life Sidekick to Unfu*k Yourself
By Gary John Bishop
HarperOne, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers; paperback, $18.99

Gary John Bishop is one of the world's leading personal development experts, and the author of the New York Times and worldwide bestseller Unfu*k Yourself. After years of facilitating programs for one of the world's leading personal development companies, he combined his training in otology and phenemology with his interest in the philosophies of Martin Heidegger, Hans-Georg Gadamer, and Earl Husserl to produce his own brand of straightforward self-improvement.

Bishop's no-frills, no "B.S." approach has garnered him a following drawn to the simplicity and real-world application of his work. His "urban philosophy" is part of a new wave of personal empowerment and life mastery that has led to miraculous results in the quality and performance of people's lives.

In his new book, Do The Work, Bishop provides a personalized way to actively unfu*k yourself by digging deep into the things that keep us from the life we want. Written in the same mold as his earlier book, with a "your life depends on it" urgency, Bishop asks questions and provides prompts that provoke the reader into providing real answers to their own challenges, hurdles, justifications, and explanations.

Do The Work examines the primary areas of life that most of us struggle with or get stuck on - Self, People, and Purpose. It also looks at what we tolerate about ourselves, mindlessly meander or fudge our way through. This hands-on book, which requires 100 percent honesty and keeping promises to yourself, helps the reader uncover what's been holding them back and open the door to real changes.

Bishop writes in the section A Question Of Self, "If you've ever felt like you lack confidence, or that you're too angry, or perhaps you're someone who is nice to a fault, or that you're too cold or disconnected, or too independent or different, misunderstood, or harsh or even unloved, you're not alone.

"We all have aspects of ourselves that we seemingly can't get past or get over. Our weaknesses and faults, apparent shortages of personality or character, stifled emotions or certain behaviors that seem to come easily to others but are problematic to us.

"We all have these little (and not-so-little) dark spots in our makeup, internalized faults that we know are there, and then we proceed to mold our entire life around them to avoid chaos or sadness or tragedy. Out of hopelessness or whatever, we let them dominate and push us into avoiding or resisting certain things we would otherwise take on and embrace.

"For instance, people who seemingly lack confidence or feel like they're difference or don't quite fit in simply might not pick up the phone when someone calls because they don't feel secure enough or open enough to deal with other people sometimes. The unease and the social awkwardness kick in and take over: Sometimes they're not even clear why they won't answer those calls; they're just not 'feeling it.'

"They'll maybe play phone tag or stick to text messages, or on some days, simply disappear. 'I'm not confident enough to do this' or 'I'm introverted. What do they expect?'

"That shit can grow arms and legs too. You can become isolated. Alone.

"Of course, this is an innocent example of that particular personal constraint, but the old vote of 'no confidence' can completely wreck a fledgling love or lay waste to the most brilliant and creative of ideas. It can become the mud from which a person never quite manages to shake free their longing-to-dance feet.

"Alternatively, maybe you're someone who feels like you're too nice or too kind and therefore you're avoiding certain people for another reason entirely! Perhaps you feel as if you're constantly being taken advantage of and you can't bring yourself to take a stand for what matters to you, to say 'no' or to push back on those you feel push you. So you smile or say something semiagreeable and slither awkwardly through the conversation to something else that's a little more comfortable or safe while that minivolcano erupts in your gut.

"You might already have started handling this by limiting your participation in life and putting a lid on yourself. The familiar emotional garrote. A by-product of this approach is that you unknowingly turn yourself into a victim all too easily. You quietly blame others when you get yourself too close to that discomfort zone of yours. The quiet resentment can often go unnoticed.

"Like it's something they need to change about themselves rather than a problem you need to handle on your own."

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