This nicely packaged, compact volume reinforces the basic tenets of successful living.
Books about living a successful life flood the self-improvement shelves of libraries and bookstores every year, so it is rare for any newly published book in the category to stand out. 12 Strategies for Success by counselor and educator Mabel Joshua-Amadi, author of numerous self-improvement books, including The Power of Attitude, offers information that is not new, but its handsome presentation—short chapters, clear and concise writing, and an easy-to-read page design—helps this book to rise above other titles.
Joshua-Amadi organizes the book around twelve “strategies,” which include “clear sense of direction,” “go the extra mile,” and “perseverance.” She devotes a chapter to each strategy and writes eloquently and with conviction.
In “Maintain a Positive Mental Attitude,” for example, the author discusses the importance of avoiding negative people, suggesting that individuals should “Choose people who can lift you up and encourage you to be more than you are now.” She relates a personal story about how something she read influenced her life and led her to practice “the law of contentment.” Also in this chapter, as in many chapters, Joshua-Amadi includes vignettes from the lives of others who used a positive mental attitude to achieve success. For example, she summarizes stories of Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Viktor Frankl, a World War II concentration camp survivor. She does an admirable job of blending her own sensible, down-to-earth counsel with the wisdom of others. .
Joshua-Amadi also adds a humorous, refreshing twist every so often. For instance, in the chapter titled “Perseverance,” she addresses negative attitudes in this way: “These I call CRAP (criticism, condemnation, refusal, abuse and pressure).” Later, she writes: “The worst crap happens in service industries. Those who serve must take the crap. That is part of the deal. If you detest taking the crap, then keep away from service firms.”
At the end of each chapter, the author includes “Exercises,” which consist of questions to help focus on each strategy. This technique crystallizes the content of each chapter and forms a useful bridge to the strategy in the next chapter. She closes the book with some “Concluding Remarks” that summarize key points covered.
This is a compact, well-paced book that will probably provide as much guidance about how to achieve personal success as books twice its length. The author’s engaging style and ability to deliver an inspirational message in condensed form make 12 Strategies for Success a worthwhile reading experience.