17 Lies That Are
Holding You Back...

Steve Chandler
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buy *17 Lies That Are Holding You Back & the Truth That Will Set You Free* online 17 Lies That Are Holding You Back
& the Truth That Will Set You Free

Steve Chandler
St. Martin's Press
237 pages
September 2001
rated 5 of 5 possible stars

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Steve Chandler's powerful motivational book, 17 Lies That Are Holding You Back & the Truth That Will Set You Free, is a book that many will find life-changing. Its purpose is to expose the societal and personal lies that "hold people back." One might very well ask: "Back from what?" The answers, as the book explains, are many. Life is full of dreams and decisions that call us forward. But for some people, those dreams are never fulfilled and those decisions never made. Chandler uses personal and anecdotal evidences to explaining the subtle life-denying power of these lies.

Motivational books are often challenging. And books that challenge us to open or change our minds are a hard read. Some readers might dismiss a few of these lies as not applicable to them. Or plain not true. But if they are willing to accept Chandler's challenge -- and challenging this book most definitely is -- they will discover, happily or unhappily, that their own minds have accepted some lies. The nicotine-addicted chainsmoker might disagree when Chandler knocks Lie #9 ("The longer I have a habit, the harder it is to break.") off its pedestal. They might want to show him medical evidence that proves the addictive nature of cigarettes. Satisfied that they have proven him wrong, they may not feel motivated to simply decide not to pick up the next cigarette.

Chandler's contention is that many people subconsciously or unwittingly are lying to themselves. The lies are many but they share a common denominator: they are often crutches used to make people's lives easier. And why, Chandler asks, do we want an easy life when self-esteem, joy, fullness of life and inner strength often come from doing what is difficult. Chandler is a motivator and therefore an optimist. His writing is honest, direct and often personal. Chandler gently -- he is not a judgmental or harsh author -- skewers these popular excuses and crutches.

For instance, in the chapters dedicated to Lie #5 ("I don't have the time.") Lie #6 ("There's nothing I can do") and #15 ("That's just the way I am") Chandler shows the spiritual, emotional and physical benefits people get when they hold to these self- pitying, self-righteous, and self-justifying excuses. Other lies, like Lie #16 ("What doesn't kill me makes me stronger") and #8 ("I'm sadder now but wiser.") seem wistful and romantic. But in describing the power of Lie #16 on his own early writing career, Chandler shows that unthinking romantic emulation of a "hard-drinking" writer's life can be quite dangerous.

17 Lies That Are Holding You Back & the Truth That Will Set You Free, is a mere 237 pages. And yet it is full of life-changing insights that will give those readers motivated and unmotivated alike food for thought. Many readers will argue with Chandler at every turn. And yet, because his insights are well-reasoned and stay with the reader long after the book is finished, even these readers will be find that many of their future actions and choices have been changed because of the book. This excellent book, which also comes in audiobook format, is highly recommended.

© 2002 by Carole McDonnell for Curled Up With a Good Book

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