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The Art of Work

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Jeff Goins, a brilliant new voice counting Seth Godin and Jon Acuff among his fans, explains how to abandon the status quo and live a life that matters with true passion and purpose. The path to your life's work is difficult and risky, even scary, which is why few finish the journey. This is a book about discovering your life's work, that treasure of immeasurable worth we a Jeff Goins, a brilliant new voice counting Seth Godin and Jon Acuff among his fans, explains how to abandon the status quo and live a life that matters with true passion and purpose. The path to your life's work is difficult and risky, even scary, which is why few finish the journey. This is a book about discovering your life's work, that treasure of immeasurable worth we all long for. Its about the task you were born to do. As Jeff Goins explains, the search begins with passion but does not end there. Only when our interests connect with the needs of the world do we begin living for a larger purpose. Those who experience this intersection experience something exceptional and enviable. Though it is rare, such a life is attainable by anyone brave enough to try. Through personal experience, compelling case studies, and current research on the mysteries of motivation and talent, Jeff shows readers how to find their vocation and what to expect along the way.


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Jeff Goins, a brilliant new voice counting Seth Godin and Jon Acuff among his fans, explains how to abandon the status quo and live a life that matters with true passion and purpose. The path to your life's work is difficult and risky, even scary, which is why few finish the journey. This is a book about discovering your life's work, that treasure of immeasurable worth we a Jeff Goins, a brilliant new voice counting Seth Godin and Jon Acuff among his fans, explains how to abandon the status quo and live a life that matters with true passion and purpose. The path to your life's work is difficult and risky, even scary, which is why few finish the journey. This is a book about discovering your life's work, that treasure of immeasurable worth we all long for. Its about the task you were born to do. As Jeff Goins explains, the search begins with passion but does not end there. Only when our interests connect with the needs of the world do we begin living for a larger purpose. Those who experience this intersection experience something exceptional and enviable. Though it is rare, such a life is attainable by anyone brave enough to try. Through personal experience, compelling case studies, and current research on the mysteries of motivation and talent, Jeff shows readers how to find their vocation and what to expect along the way.

30 review for The Art of Work

  1. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    Rarely do I breeze through a non-fiction book, especially one that's more business-minded. But that's what I love about Jeff Goins' writing. It's creative, inspiring and encouraging, and not once while reading The Art of Work did I find myself bored or the writing dull. (I received an advance PDF copy of the book as a result of preordering.) The Art of Work will change your idea of calling and propel you toward embracing your purpose. Goins' principles and observations are so simple they should b Rarely do I breeze through a non-fiction book, especially one that's more business-minded. But that's what I love about Jeff Goins' writing. It's creative, inspiring and encouraging, and not once while reading The Art of Work did I find myself bored or the writing dull. (I received an advance PDF copy of the book as a result of preordering.) The Art of Work will change your idea of calling and propel you toward embracing your purpose. Goins' principles and observations are so simple they should be obvious but I found myself renewed and challenged by his way of thinking. Thoughts like calling being a journey and not a one-time event and how a life lived in multiple arenas is not chaotic but a portfolio. I will refer back to this book often to practice the principles and listen to my life. If you're not sure your life has a plan, or you're following a plan and now find yourself lost, or you're facing a career transition, this is a book that needs to be in your hands, not just on your shelf. Goins lays out an easy-to-follow guide that can be tailored to whatever your life entails. It's not a how-to book in that it will give you a list of steps to follow to find your calling. It's an invitation to listen and act based on what is already a part of your life. I'd give this book more stars if I could!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Dwayne Morris

    I understand that Jeff and/or publishers titled this book in such a way as to hit a larger audience. However, this book is more about finding your God-given purpose/calling than it is about your work. I get that they go hand-in-hand. It's FULL of nuggets that you can use for conversations with others about determining what they want to do "when they grow up", even if they are 50 years old. GREAT work, Jeff! Congratulations on another well-written book! I understand that Jeff and/or publishers titled this book in such a way as to hit a larger audience. However, this book is more about finding your God-given purpose/calling than it is about your work. I get that they go hand-in-hand. It's FULL of nuggets that you can use for conversations with others about determining what they want to do "when they grow up", even if they are 50 years old. GREAT work, Jeff! Congratulations on another well-written book!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

    Sometimes originality isn't in dreaming up something no one has ever thought of before, but in synthesizing many different pieces into a cohesive and inspiring whole. This book offers the opportunity to change your thinking about work in a similar way Steven Pressfield did with creativity in "The War of Art". This isn't a self- help book full of celebrity heroes on seemingly special journeys unavailable to the rest of us, it is full of everyday relatable people whose lives didn't turn out as they Sometimes originality isn't in dreaming up something no one has ever thought of before, but in synthesizing many different pieces into a cohesive and inspiring whole. This book offers the opportunity to change your thinking about work in a similar way Steven Pressfield did with creativity in "The War of Art". This isn't a self- help book full of celebrity heroes on seemingly special journeys unavailable to the rest of us, it is full of everyday relatable people whose lives didn't turn out as they expected and what they discovered when they changed those expectations. The last reviewer, Grace, said it perfectly: "...finding our callings is not something grand, but rather something beautifully complex, somewhat accidental, and not at all contrived. It's a delicate balance that has blindness on one side and addiction on the other." The book is organized into a series of themes that, when broken down don't attempt to define 'THE path' which doesn't exist, but a way to open ourselves up to our own unique journey. Even if you have discovered your 'calling', Jeff offers a new way to look at what that means. It is realistic. The struggles on our journey, obstacles in practice and apprenticeship can forge our characters and highlight what is uniquely our own. A change in thinking, awareness and the reframing failure is not only a good idea, it's necessary. The book encourages us to consider redefining the meaning of success and legacy. I find the weaknesses of the book to be in the narrative. Jeff can be a little too economical with his storytelling, making this reader's connection with his interviewees tenuous. He breaks the narratives to make a point and sometimes this is ok, but it makes some chapters too choppy. This is why I couldn't quite give it a perfect rating.The book was really a 4.5 star experience. There are Christian overtones to the book, but they aren't intrusive or proselytizing. Take those snippets or leave them. The Art of Work is the second book I have read from Jeff Goins and he is living up to his potential. I am going to be reading this book again when my print copy arrives and getting out the old school highlighter and writing in the margins. The "Art of Work" can remind us to open our minds, be willing to let go of our expectations and LISTEN to life. Highly recommended.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Siska

    Despite of the high rating, I somehow did not quite enjoy this book, let alone being inspired by it. One of the main values of this type of writing is how the writer connect between one source to another, and then bring an interesting conclusion from these connections. To this I feel Goins did not do well enough. His points are mostly superficial, very few of them feel original or made me feel as if they came from meaningful eureka moments. Every now and then, he would quote some good writers suc Despite of the high rating, I somehow did not quite enjoy this book, let alone being inspired by it. One of the main values of this type of writing is how the writer connect between one source to another, and then bring an interesting conclusion from these connections. To this I feel Goins did not do well enough. His points are mostly superficial, very few of them feel original or made me feel as if they came from meaningful eureka moments. Every now and then, he would quote some good writers such as Handy, and these are the parts where I enjoyed most. I wonder if maybe the ideas were briliant, only that they were not being properly laid. Some parts were longwinded and there were quite a few unnecessary repetitions, especially when describing the real life stories. So many parts are quite boring. Regardless, there are still one or two meaningful propositions, which I appreciate, and while I do not understand how it can be, I hope this book continues to inspire people.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Grace

    How does one classify this book? It's equal parts self-help, inspirational, amazing stories, and heart felt passion for life. Yet, is it something so much more raw than any of these books. Within these pages you'll find a series of insights that describe every human's primal need to do something better with their life. Goins uses a combination of stories around the world, purposely choosing "normal" folks that we do not see their faces plastered all over the internet and top news sites to weave How does one classify this book? It's equal parts self-help, inspirational, amazing stories, and heart felt passion for life. Yet, is it something so much more raw than any of these books. Within these pages you'll find a series of insights that describe every human's primal need to do something better with their life. Goins uses a combination of stories around the world, purposely choosing "normal" folks that we do not see their faces plastered all over the internet and top news sites to weave through the lessons he has learnt from them about the nature of finding our calling and vocation in life. He choose these people by design to show us that finding our callings is not something grand, but rather something beautifully complex, somewhat accidental, and not at all contrived. It's a delicate balance that has blindness on one side and addiction on the other. Goins takes us on a trip through the stages that one usually goes through to find their vocation, see it through, and leave a legacy. From wishing, to listening, to discovery, to doing, and finally to legacy, the whole story of "how to be great" is there. The point that impressed upon me the most is how we all need to be great in our own way, not in someone else's way. What is "great" for one is not necessarily the "greatness" for another. And, oddly, it's rarely what we think it should be. Now, I should warn those of delicate sensibilities that cannot tolerate anything with a religious content. On pages 91 - 97 Goins uses a bible story to illustrate a particular point he's trying to make about listening to the cue of your life to figure out what your calling and vocation is. Sometimes it's obvious, but sometimes it is not. For those of you that can't stomach a little of this sort of discourse, feel free to skip these pages; it will be a great book without them. The book ends with a summary of sorts, which I must say, is an asset to the book as you can get overwhelmed in reading it, then want to go back to your notes and be out of sorts. The appendices do a great job of summarising everything, giving actionable steps, and getting you going after the entirety of the book has made you restless and wanting to hear your own calling.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Tonia Harris

    I just finished crying all the way through the conclusion of this book. I joined an online writer's group reading this and it was one of the best decisions of my summer. Sometimes, it's very easy to get lost in the forest- to forget we are our own compass and that we have everything we need to commit and fulfill our life's calling. And that it never ends, not even when we die. There's this word, legacy, and what it means is how we, instead of working to live, live to work, to be our best selves, I just finished crying all the way through the conclusion of this book. I joined an online writer's group reading this and it was one of the best decisions of my summer. Sometimes, it's very easy to get lost in the forest- to forget we are our own compass and that we have everything we need to commit and fulfill our life's calling. And that it never ends, not even when we die. There's this word, legacy, and what it means is how we, instead of working to live, live to work, to be our best selves, and how this can impact others. Well, Mr. Goins, you're leaving a fine legacy. It's touched me and I hope I can utilize all I'm learning to do the same. I had already been part of a group building a library for our small communities, but the day to day grind, the red tape, the politics, the trying to share the vision with others who can't believe in something so large- I was overwhelmed. This book broke it down for me. That it's all a process and calling is not about doing something on your own, and how much impact we can have by living our daily lives the best way possible. It also helped me to say, "I am a poet." That may sound like such a small thing to many, but knowing this clarified so many things for me and now I feel like I'm on the right path. The path may throw me for a loop or several, be hard, scary, uncomfortable, but I know it's the true path. I'm not just a poet with words, but with my life. Sometimes, a book like this can open you up to what was already there, obvious to perhaps many but yourself. I am on fire again. Only it's not a consuming fire. It's life-affirming and my hope is I leave behind a legacy of light and warmth for many others. Great book. Go out and get your copy. :)

  7. 5 out of 5

    Conrad Zero

    If this book doesn't change your life, then you haven't read it. The Art of Work is an excellent book, but you should expect no less from Jeff Goins. Highly motivational, inspirational and well crafted, this is a book you'll want to keep around and read several times during your stay here on Earth. More than just a bunch of concepts, The Art of Work contains real-life stories about real people searching for their "calling." A meaningful career path. A life well-lived. The book shows you how to fi If this book doesn't change your life, then you haven't read it. The Art of Work is an excellent book, but you should expect no less from Jeff Goins. Highly motivational, inspirational and well crafted, this is a book you'll want to keep around and read several times during your stay here on Earth. More than just a bunch of concepts, The Art of Work contains real-life stories about real people searching for their "calling." A meaningful career path. A life well-lived. The book shows you how to find that path and walk it, all the way from Preparation through Action to Completion. The highly useful Appendix has lists of exercises and discussion questions for you to turn theory into practice. I don't like the cover. Crashed paper airplane? Representing boredom in a dead end career, I guess? And the title is sure to get this book lost in a sea of all the other "Art of..." books. Should have used "calling" or "purpose" or "meaning" in the title instead, as they have more to do with the content than either "art" or "work." A book about your calling sounds better to me than a book about work. At least it doesn't have the world "girl" in the title. Covers and titles aside, nothing can tarnish the 5-star content inside this book. If nothing else, you'll buy this book thinking it's going to get you out of your drab cubicle and into a corner office. But instead... you'll be amazed. -Zero

  8. 5 out of 5

    Emily Mills

    I read this fast- maybe not the best for absorbing but I will reread for sure. The writing style and content kept me interested- I didn't feel like I needed to take a break. I feel like this was a good, gentle read. A lot of books in this genre can be so encouraging and informing that it feels fast-paced and like the author is shouting at you- "FOLLOW YOUR DREAMS ALREADY!" I feel like Jeff's writing style is more calm, collected, and gradual. Over the course of the book he brings up good points I read this fast- maybe not the best for absorbing but I will reread for sure. The writing style and content kept me interested- I didn't feel like I needed to take a break. I feel like this was a good, gentle read. A lot of books in this genre can be so encouraging and informing that it feels fast-paced and like the author is shouting at you- "FOLLOW YOUR DREAMS ALREADY!" I feel like Jeff's writing style is more calm, collected, and gradual. Over the course of the book he brings up good points which build on each other. Segues from one point to the next are intuitive. The questions at the end- I thought they were wonderful. Too often books preach great content but then leave you hanging as to how to apply the concepts to your own life. Some readers might not even know how to do that without a prompt. Helping readers evaluate their own lives is an important step too many authors overlook or choose not to do.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Voni

    This book far surmounted what I expected. I read it on my Kindle, highlighting countless pages. Now I'm going to print those pages, so I will have a handy reference of notes on my computer. I'm 82... and have learned over the years about calling and how that applies in my life. However, I was surprised by what I learned from Jeff's illustrations: they enriched my own understanding, helping me think and better clarify those things I still long to do (like get my first book finished this year.) Jeff This book far surmounted what I expected. I read it on my Kindle, highlighting countless pages. Now I'm going to print those pages, so I will have a handy reference of notes on my computer. I'm 82... and have learned over the years about calling and how that applies in my life. However, I was surprised by what I learned from Jeff's illustrations: they enriched my own understanding, helping me think and better clarify those things I still long to do (like get my first book finished this year.) Jeff is strengthening and encouraging thousands of everyday people as he shares what he is learning. His writing style makes me think he's sitting at our table with a cup of coffee in his hand, talking, as I listen and understand. Keep writing, Jeff - and come sit at our table anytime.

  10. 4 out of 5

    ☘Misericordia☘ ⚡ϟ⚡⛈⚡☁ ❇️❤❣

    Some really good stories.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Katie M. Reid

    This book is not just for writers, it’s for all those who want to pursue work that matters Throughout this book Jeff shares accounts from around the world of those who live(d) their callings. A common thread appeared through these accounts: mistakes were made, they learned to pivot when things didn’t go as expected, they kept going and were true to their convictions. The Art of Work is interesting, practical and inspiring. My favorite sections came at the end—so be sure to read it all the way throu This book is not just for writers, it’s for all those who want to pursue work that matters Throughout this book Jeff shares accounts from around the world of those who live(d) their callings. A common thread appeared through these accounts: mistakes were made, they learned to pivot when things didn’t go as expected, they kept going and were true to their convictions. The Art of Work is interesting, practical and inspiring. My favorite sections came at the end—so be sure to read it all the way through. In fact, as you will see below, page 167 spoke the loudest to this try-hard woman. “Sometimes all the little things in life aren’t interruptions to our calling. They are the most important part.” (The Art of Work, pg. 167). As I write this post little ones are interrupting and I’m not handling it well—not handling their hearts well as I snap and say, “Quiet! I’m trying to work here.” But, as we talked about before, maybe the small things are the most important after all. “As you endeavor to do something amazing with your life, don’t forget that without people to support your dream, your work will always be incomplete” (The Art of Work, pg. 167).

  12. 5 out of 5

    Bethany Michelle Planton

    I read Jeff’s blog and listen to his podcast, so when the opportunity came to pre-order this book I took it. "The Art of Work recaptures the ancient understanding of vocation as more than a job, or even a career, but as a passion-fueled calling that makes each day an exciting adventure." This book won’t give you the answer to what your calling is, but it sure helped me think through my calling and life in general. And I am adding it to my must read every year list. "Your calling is not a single I read Jeff’s blog and listen to his podcast, so when the opportunity came to pre-order this book I took it. "The Art of Work recaptures the ancient understanding of vocation as more than a job, or even a career, but as a passion-fueled calling that makes each day an exciting adventure." This book won’t give you the answer to what your calling is, but it sure helped me think through my calling and life in general. And I am adding it to my must read every year list. "Your calling is not a single event in your life; it's the whole body of work you make - including your job, your relationships, and the legacy you leave behind."

  13. 4 out of 5

    Kressel Housman

    I had low expectations going into this book. I dream of being a writer, but I can’t afford to quit my secretarial job, and I thought this book was going to advise me to throw caution to the wind and live out my dream anyway. Luckily, it was not as impractical as I thought. The book was filled of inspiring stories about successful people living out their dreams, but nowhere does the book advise people to take uninformed leaps. It’s much more about gradual steps, which works well for me. And since I had low expectations going into this book. I dream of being a writer, but I can’t afford to quit my secretarial job, and I thought this book was going to advise me to throw caution to the wind and live out my dream anyway. Luckily, it was not as impractical as I thought. The book was filled of inspiring stories about successful people living out their dreams, but nowhere does the book advise people to take uninformed leaps. It’s much more about gradual steps, which works well for me. And since the author’s dream is the same as mine - to become a writer – he speaks to the very thing I want. So I’ll be reading more from him. I like what he had to say.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Abbi

    The Art of Work was referenced in a SHRM article that I read and I decided to borrow it from my local library; and I'm so glad that I did. What I appreciated the most about the book is that Jeff Goins doesn't pretend to have the answer to figuring out what your calling in life is and how to pursue it. Instead, he draws on the experiences and revelations of different people from all walks of life and weaves together a book that makes you want to step back and take a good, hard look at your own mo The Art of Work was referenced in a SHRM article that I read and I decided to borrow it from my local library; and I'm so glad that I did. What I appreciated the most about the book is that Jeff Goins doesn't pretend to have the answer to figuring out what your calling in life is and how to pursue it. Instead, he draws on the experiences and revelations of different people from all walks of life and weaves together a book that makes you want to step back and take a good, hard look at your own motives for working. I really enjoyed reading this book and would highly-recommend it to anyone that wants to use their God-given gifts to serve others.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Kymberly

    Instead of pushing you to complete lists and brainstorming sessions in the search for your calling, Jeff takes a more introspective and relaxed approach. Encouraging readers to listen and observe, find common threads in tasks they enjoy, and not feel like a failure for changing tracks, it's a refreshing read. The stories are of 'normal' people, not the usual famous names seen in many of these books. This makes the search for a calling seem more realistic. There are religious threads, and one 'ill Instead of pushing you to complete lists and brainstorming sessions in the search for your calling, Jeff takes a more introspective and relaxed approach. Encouraging readers to listen and observe, find common threads in tasks they enjoy, and not feel like a failure for changing tracks, it's a refreshing read. The stories are of 'normal' people, not the usual famous names seen in many of these books. This makes the search for a calling seem more realistic. There are religious threads, and one 'illustrative' story, so this book won't be to everyone's taste.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Nancy H Vest

    I had high hopes when I started this book. I've read books by this author before, and I have enjoyed many of his blogposts. The part of the introduction where the author talks about letting go of what could have been led me to write of list of what to let go of and what to embrace instead. It was cathartic. Then came a brick wall. I was dragging myself through the first chapter which is entitled Listening to Your Life. It all seemed rather touchy-feely, vague, and 'out there' to me. I was about r I had high hopes when I started this book. I've read books by this author before, and I have enjoyed many of his blogposts. The part of the introduction where the author talks about letting go of what could have been led me to write of list of what to let go of and what to embrace instead. It was cathartic. Then came a brick wall. I was dragging myself through the first chapter which is entitled Listening to Your Life. It all seemed rather touchy-feely, vague, and 'out there' to me. I was about ready to put the book down and stop reading altogether, but an acquaintance who'd finished the book encouraged me to read on. I'm glad I listened. The parts that were bothersome in this chapter were completely clear by the end of the book. This book delves into the why's and how's of meaningful work in ways I hadn't considered. The author provides real world examples to illustrate his points, and he uses people from all walks of life. He helps readers to see that there is value in nearly any kind of work, and the value isn't necessarily a money thing. (What work doesn't have value?...illegal things,stuff like that. My assertion here, not anything the author blatantly says in the book) I underlined and highlighted again and again, and if a friend wanted to borrow my copy of this book I would instead buy him a copy of his own. I wouldn't want to risk losing the notes, etc, that I made while reading. Read this book. It's worth the time.

  17. 4 out of 5

    John

    Jeff Goins writes a book with a compilation of melancholy stories to elicit sentimentality from the reader along with to mollify and reassure the reader that mistakes are fine to make and that everything we do add's up to what our "calling" is. He then redundantly reiterates the word "calling" throughout the book emphasizing that what we are meant to do in life has been a unique characteristic in us all along. While maintaining this romanticized undertone he still does manage to give some pragma Jeff Goins writes a book with a compilation of melancholy stories to elicit sentimentality from the reader along with to mollify and reassure the reader that mistakes are fine to make and that everything we do add's up to what our "calling" is. He then redundantly reiterates the word "calling" throughout the book emphasizing that what we are meant to do in life has been a unique characteristic in us all along. While maintaining this romanticized undertone he still does manage to give some pragmatic advice in the book rather than deluding the readers that they're special by saying they have a "calling." He introduces the idea of taking a risk with our vocation; he also clarify's in "The Portfolio Life" that we are the actions we make; composing ourselves in Work, Home, Play, and Purpose. He lastly provides the reader with the simple though annually overlooked fact that mastery at anything requires work and that we cannot accurately anticipate mastery with talent alone -- we must have some effort intertwined with our natural capabilities. My prominent reason for rating this book a three (almost a two) is for Jeff's redundant use of the word "calling." When in reality, we do not have a calling. We have enjoyments and pleasures and avocations and vocations that are enjoyable at certain era's of our life and not enjoyable at others. We are made up of our genetics and our experiences -- and no calling is found in either of those two.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Leah Good

    After seeing a friend frequently retweet the author of this book and then review the book itself on her blog I decided to read it myself. Since I am currently between jobs and finding it difficult to determine what's next, it seemed especially applicable. The Art of Work is an encouraging book. It pulls "pipe dreams" down from their lofty but unreachable heights and encourages honest evaluation and planning to make dreams a reality. "Anything less than such proactivity is a cheap imitation of the After seeing a friend frequently retweet the author of this book and then review the book itself on her blog I decided to read it myself. Since I am currently between jobs and finding it difficult to determine what's next, it seemed especially applicable. The Art of Work is an encouraging book. It pulls "pipe dreams" down from their lofty but unreachable heights and encourages honest evaluation and planning to make dreams a reality. "Anything less than such proactivity is a cheap imitation of the life you were meant to live," the author encourages. This is a book that redeemes confusion and failures and turns them into stepping stones on the path to reaching your calling. When presenting one man's story, Goins summaries, "He didn't come to his life's work by success. He found it through failure." Because I read most of this book while tired and a bit discouraged, I found it a little hard to focus and some of the stories difficult to relate to. However, there were a lot of encouraging nuggets that I tucked away into my memory vault to draw continued inspiration from. If you're thinking of reading this book, check my friend's review out. It's a very well thought out summary of the positive aspects of the book.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Mighty Rasing

    I actually 'read' the audiobook of this book, read by Jeff himself. It's a book full of anecdotes and carefully crafted thoughts on calling and work. As somebody who also follows Tim Ferriss' concept of the "Jack of All Trades, Master of Some", this book spoke to me. We're not really called to only ONE calling, as if we were meant to do one thing and one thing only throughout our life. Jeff's book presents stories of people who chased after their passions and discovered that it is their calling; I actually 'read' the audiobook of this book, read by Jeff himself. It's a book full of anecdotes and carefully crafted thoughts on calling and work. As somebody who also follows Tim Ferriss' concept of the "Jack of All Trades, Master of Some", this book spoke to me. We're not really called to only ONE calling, as if we were meant to do one thing and one thing only throughout our life. Jeff's book presents stories of people who chased after their passions and discovered that it is their calling; those who chased after passions and failed, only to rise up in some other realm. The book tackles calling as this multi-faceted thing, and the process of its discovery is not as neat as we would like it to be.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

    I admit that I'm a fan of Jeff Goins' writing style and approach to community and to life, so I went into this book expecting to like it. The stories included just blew me away. I wasn't prepared to see the lives of others unfold in such a way when it's a book about finding your life's work or vocation. It definitely goes deeper than most life/career guides. The writing style makes the book's topic very approachable. It's challenging without feeling like you are climbing a mountain. Instead, his I admit that I'm a fan of Jeff Goins' writing style and approach to community and to life, so I went into this book expecting to like it. The stories included just blew me away. I wasn't prepared to see the lives of others unfold in such a way when it's a book about finding your life's work or vocation. It definitely goes deeper than most life/career guides. The writing style makes the book's topic very approachable. It's challenging without feeling like you are climbing a mountain. Instead, his direction helps you attack your goals just like eating an elephant... one bite at a time.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Taylor

    Meh. I read the whole thing because it was quick and I was hoping to glean something from its entirety. However, it was just a disjointed collection of stories about people the writer found on the internet whose "callings" ended up being vapid, self-indulgent, or something they couldn't sustain long-term. I appreciated the lack of "entrepreneur" and rags-to-riches stories and that Goins attempted to include real-life examples but, ultimately, they fell flat. Let's just say I didn't take a single Meh. I read the whole thing because it was quick and I was hoping to glean something from its entirety. However, it was just a disjointed collection of stories about people the writer found on the internet whose "callings" ended up being vapid, self-indulgent, or something they couldn't sustain long-term. I appreciated the lack of "entrepreneur" and rags-to-riches stories and that Goins attempted to include real-life examples but, ultimately, they fell flat. Let's just say I didn't take a single note. For me, that means I've just read a dud.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Mattia

    Wow folks, I don't use all caps a lot, but SERIOUSLY HOW DID ANYONE LET A BOOK GET PUBLISHED IN THIS CENTURY that literally says that Asians are better at math for some kind of inborn reason? No joke. I read that part like four times because I thought it must be wrong. He used that and Kenyans and running in the same thought. Just...what? Also used thugs in a really uncomfortable context around prisons. Also runs a writing group with "tribe" in the title. So um yeah, this guy is white, and that' Wow folks, I don't use all caps a lot, but SERIOUSLY HOW DID ANYONE LET A BOOK GET PUBLISHED IN THIS CENTURY that literally says that Asians are better at math for some kind of inborn reason? No joke. I read that part like four times because I thought it must be wrong. He used that and Kenyans and running in the same thought. Just...what? Also used thugs in a really uncomfortable context around prisons. Also runs a writing group with "tribe" in the title. So um yeah, this guy is white, and that's my review.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Tasha Seegmiller

    Inspiring motivation It's quite possible that I highlighted more in this book than most others I've read. Point after point resonated with my own recent journey to discover passions, learn more about a craft, and expand my vision to have more meaning in what I do. I would highly recommend this book to everyone. Inspiring motivation It's quite possible that I highlighted more in this book than most others I've read. Point after point resonated with my own recent journey to discover passions, learn more about a craft, and expand my vision to have more meaning in what I do. I would highly recommend this book to everyone.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Cassandra

    a real dud in my opinion. advice is mixed into not that illustrative stories. Cal Newport's "So Good They Cant Ignore You" and Barbara Sher's "Wishcraft" are much better. I would advise not reading this book. a real dud in my opinion. advice is mixed into not that illustrative stories. Cal Newport's "So Good They Cant Ignore You" and Barbara Sher's "Wishcraft" are much better. I would advise not reading this book.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Tony

    "Before you can tell your life what you want to do with it, you must listen to what it wants to do with you." Enough said? "Before you can tell your life what you want to do with it, you must listen to what it wants to do with you." Enough said?

  26. 5 out of 5

    Rob Thompson

    About the book: The Art of Work is about finding your calling – that special goal that brings you joy and imbues your life with meaning. These blinks will teach you how to find your calling and how to live by it once you've found it. Your calling is the secret to living a fulfilling life – so don't let it get away! About the author: Jeff Goins is the bestselling author of The In-Between, Wrecked and You Are A Writer. His work mostly deals with pinpointing your dreams and turning them into a reali About the book: The Art of Work is about finding your calling – that special goal that brings you joy and imbues your life with meaning. These blinks will teach you how to find your calling and how to live by it once you've found it. Your calling is the secret to living a fulfilling life – so don't let it get away! About the author: Jeff Goins is the bestselling author of The In-Between, Wrecked and You Are A Writer. His work mostly deals with pinpointing your dreams and turning them into a reality. My highlights: Your calling gives your life meaning. The best way to achieve happiness in the workplace is to find your calling – a force larger than yourself that drives your every action. Awareness helps you recognize your calling when you come across it. Another good way to find your calling is to make a list of all the major events in your life, even the ones that might not seem like the most important. When did you feel the most fulfilled, happy or accomplished? Look for similarities between these moments – your calling might be something that ties them all together. Find good mentors and never stop practicing. the most successful people are those who know how to find good coaches and mentors. Mentors guide them as they get closer to their calling. You can only master your calling by practicing it.And the best way to practice is to never stop striving toward knowledge and self-improvement. That means you have to accustom yourself to failure.Practice isn't about doing the same simple task over and over again. It's about pushing yourself into new frontiers – making mistakes and learning from them. Don't stop moving toward your goal and always learn from your mistakes. Failure doesn't take you away from success – it leads you there!Everyone who pursues their dream experiences setbacks at some point. Accept these hardships as opportunities to learn and better yourself. Live a portfolio life that's filled with interesting challenges and variety. In a portfolio life, your identity is based on a wide range of things, not just one. The author, for example, isn't only a writer – he's a father and husband, too.There are four main areas in a portfolio life: work, home, play and purpose.Work doesn't have to refer only to your main job; it can include other projects you work on as well. Home is all about your family and friends – that's where much of the meaning in your life comes from. When you do things just for the joy of it, that's your play. Finally, your purpose is the main goal of your life – what you're prepared to take risks for. Seek out different sorts of challenges that will bring variety to your portfolio life, because living a portfolio life means living for your calling. Your calling is your legacy – and you'll never stop living for it. Your calling is more than a personal goal – it’s your legacy, the work that will continue to inspire others long after you're finished with it.If you're doing something for yourself alone, that's not your calling. So don't aim to produce one masterpiece – your calling is more like a magnum opus. It's your entire body of work. To understand your calling you must acknowledge death, because a calling is also a legacy. You'll never finish with your calling, no matter how hard you try. And a fear of death can in fact be useful – it drives many to keep creating until the end. Final summary: Everyone has a calling – an idea that imbues their life with meaning and pushes them forward. So develop the awareness to find yours and strive to live a portfolio life that will give you the happiness and balance you need. When you live for your calling, you won't just produce work you'll be proud of – you'll feel more fulfilled and leave behind a legacy that will continue to inspire others even after you've passed on.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Sachin Prabhakar

    It is time to find your true calling! The book begins with a broad view of the stages one passes while living their calling and then delves deep into each of these stages- awareness, apprenticeship, practice, discovery, profession, mastery, and legacy. We all grow up and look back on the dreams that we had in the past and dismiss them off as childish, but were they? Most of the crowd out there feels they are without any purpose, in the dark of the night when the noises are down and they are lef It is time to find your true calling! The book begins with a broad view of the stages one passes while living their calling and then delves deep into each of these stages- awareness, apprenticeship, practice, discovery, profession, mastery, and legacy. We all grow up and look back on the dreams that we had in the past and dismiss them off as childish, but were they? Most of the crowd out there feels they are without any purpose, in the dark of the night when the noises are down and they are left with only their thoughts. What comfort do you really have in justifying the present life apart from the fact that even others are living the same life? We want to live our lives for more than just fulfilling obligations, we have a dream to chase and live and that is what brings meaning to our lives. Calling is as much about looking in the future as it is about looking in the past. We all have been led to this point in our lives for a purpose. The answers that we seek in the future may very well be hidden in the dusty archives of the past.The author puts this point for us to understand that finding one's calling takes work- a fear-facing journey, quite often. We ought not to just tell our life what we want to do with it, we also ought to listen to what the life wants to do with us. Discovering your true calling is not a one-time epiphany but a series of realizations. We have to be paying attention in order to be aware and then take to our calling. This is where the traditional concepts like apprenticeship and practice come in which ultimately lead to the discovery. From then the practice becomes a profession on course to mastery. Towards the latter chapters, the author ties up our calling to a bigger purpose- a purpose more than just ourselves. Calling is more than just about doing something good- it is also about being someone good. We are called to call others and share the gift with others. Throughout the book, the author urges us to rise above our comfortable selves and embrace the uncertainty which ultimately leads to the path of true calling- which is a journey, not a destination because when you are faithful to your calling, you will not be done even while in your deathbed!

  28. 4 out of 5

    John Blackman

    This is a pretty quick read on why we work. I had high expectations going into this one. I expected some sort of formula for determining what the perfect thing for me to do in life was. I was secretly hoping it lined up with what I am actually doing. Instead it focuses more on how you are living and thinking from the end of your life. I'm in a phase of life right now where my intensity for work is higher than ever, but I also now have a family. Time is so precious. 30 minutes is now a real gift w This is a pretty quick read on why we work. I had high expectations going into this one. I expected some sort of formula for determining what the perfect thing for me to do in life was. I was secretly hoping it lined up with what I am actually doing. Instead it focuses more on how you are living and thinking from the end of your life. I'm in a phase of life right now where my intensity for work is higher than ever, but I also now have a family. Time is so precious. 30 minutes is now a real gift which used to be something to just let go by in mild amusement. So choosing where that time goes drives a lot of my life right now. Most of these books fall into similar memes. 1) Enjoy the process of work, not the goals because they come and go but the work remains 2) Think of everything from the end of your life to make the right decision for you 3) Work never ends, so don't burn yourself out and sacrifice the only thing that really fulfills you which are generally speaking relationships. The above is a oversimplification of course, but keeping those in the front of my mind has been helpful.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Roniq

    I found some golden nuggets in this book that I liked a lot. I love the overall message. Where the book really came together for me is at page 135 and on when a "Portfolio Life" is mentioned. I won't give it away. It's quick to get through and I liked the flow of it, especially toward the end. No ah ha moments for me but worth a read. I found some golden nuggets in this book that I liked a lot. I love the overall message. Where the book really came together for me is at page 135 and on when a "Portfolio Life" is mentioned. I won't give it away. It's quick to get through and I liked the flow of it, especially toward the end. No ah ha moments for me but worth a read.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Pam

    An authentic and enlightening book. I have read many books that talk about taking the leap into doing what you were meant to do, but this book sheds new light on the idea of your calling in life and what that means in more detail than any other I’ve read. I read so much of it aloud to my husband because I found it absolutely worth sharing. I will read it again, for sure. Excellently written.

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