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Helping Me Help Myself: One Skeptic, Ten…

Helping Me Help Myself: One Skeptic, Ten Self-Help Gurus, and a Year on…

by Beth Lisick

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Seems I'm not the only one who needs to learn how to handle my money, clean my house and get centered.

Although this is a somewhat amusing book, it's certainly not a how-to for the reader. The author takes us on her journey to improve herself over a year's time. She spends each month focusing on one aspect of her life.

She kind of gives herself a free pass in July, when she and her husband decide they don't need marriage or sex help and she takes a paragraph to say that and that's the chapter.

The rest of the chapters explain how she falls into deciding what part of her life to focus on and how she either a) accomplishes it or b) does an end run around it.

An okay book. ( )
  Stembie3 | Jun 14, 2015 |
it's a really entertaining book, but I kept wondering why she was so completely disorganized. How does anyone live that way? And who watched her kid while she went on all these self-improvement jaunts? And did she ever tell her husband about that kiss with the stoner? ( )
  pninabaim | Mar 11, 2015 |
I found that as I read this book that I thought that the author was an idiot while admiring her quest. I was reacting to her initial sarcasm about self-help. I am not self-help junkie, but I don't think a person should disparage things unless you know something about it. Perhaps it was supposed to be funny? I do think the idea of using various self help books to help yourself is a good one and I admire the author for taking on the challenge. Sometimes, however, I couldn't stand her attitude. I found that she dealt with the attitude problem, and worked out her writing style as the book progressed (perhaps the self help worked?). This book is a good way to get familiar with some of these self help gurus, and especially their views on religion, whose books, CDs and workbooks fill bookstore shelves. I don't feel like there was a true ending to the book and wonder if she will follow it up with another book? ( )
  jlapac | Aug 14, 2013 |
A lifelong scorner of self-improvement schemes, Beth Lisick, in her mid-thirties, decided to spend a year doing one self-help area per month, with the aid of some of the top performers in the field. (Wisely, she got a book contract to defray expenses.)
As you might expect, she goes about this somewhat haphazardly -- for example, the Suze Orman workshop she attends is focused on would-be small business owners -- but she does glean something from each expert. Perhaps surprisingly, my impression was that her favorites among the self-help gurus were Stephen Covey and Richard Simmons.
Lisick is a writer and performer who has appeared on This American Life on NPR. Her book was enjoyable not only for its insights into the culture of self-help, but even more for her charming and amusing writing style and her ability to tell stories, funny and otherwise. She writes like someone I'd enjoy knowing, and I hope she sells a lot of books. ( )
  auntieknickers | Apr 3, 2013 |
Having read Beth Lisick's first book I thought I would read this one. I never took the self help part seriously and just read the book for the humor that I expected would be in it. She did not disappoint. I like it least when I thought that she was really being serious about the people she was seeing. I do have trouble with her complaining about money yet having no problem shelling out money for the "gurus" most of which would have come through the Bay Area if she waited for them. All in all if you are looking for a good laugh then you will find Beth Lisick entertaining and a good diversion from the world of serious literature. ( )
  nivramkoorb | May 21, 2012 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0061143960, Hardcover)

Whether she has been too cynical to embrace self-help or too modest to think she should waste time trying to improve herself, Beth Lisick has never given much thought to self-help until now. Taking a stranger in a strange land approach, Lisick sets out to explore self-help culture - "with an unflagging sense of purpose, a wicked sense of humour, and a soul open to humiliation". She observes that, in this day and age, it's not enough just to feel okay. It seems that everyone has the easy answer to getting rich, looking gorgeous, and feeling absolutely fantastic and reports on her sometimes enlightening, sometimes painful, often hilarious experiences throughout her year-long journey.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:00:38 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Grappling with her lifelong phobia of anything slick, cheesy, or remotely claiming to provide self-empowerment, Beth Lisick wakes up on New Year's Day 2006 with an unprecedented feeling. She is finally able to admit to herself that she's grown tired of embracing the same old set of nagging problems year after year. Instead of turning to advice from the abundant pool of local life coaches, therapists, and healers, she consults the multimillion-dollar-earning pros and national experts. Throughout this year-long experiment, Beth tries extremely hard to maintain her wry sense of humor and easygoing nature, even as she starts to fall prey to some of the experts' ideas, ideas she thought she'd spent her whole life rejecting. Beth doesn't think of herself as the typical self-help victim. But is she?… (more)

» see all 2 descriptions

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