Book Review: Personal Development For Smart People

Book Review: Personal Development For Smart People

Welcome Steve Pavlina readers and fans. I highly recommend this book, and you’ll see why in this review. I recently completed a Podcast interview with Steve Pavlina in which we discussed several very interesting self-improvement topics as well as some personal things about Steve that you won’t find anywhere else. Go ahead and subscribe to the Podcast via iTunes and it will be available in a couple of days.

Have you ever found a book that you like so much that you read it, highlighted it, wrote in the margins, put flags on your favorite passages, and reread it over and over? Well, that’s how I feel about Steve Pavlina’s new book Personal Development for Smart People.

It’s been over a month since I’ve received my copy of this book, and to tell you the truth I haven’t been able to put it down. Half way through the book I promised myself that I would reread the whole thing every 3-6 months, but I already lost track of how many times I’ve read it.

The book itself is much different from the hundreds of personal development books that I’ve read to date. What makes it unique, and worth taking a look at, is that it doesn’t try to force feed you the author’s idea on how you should be living your life.

Personal Development for Smart People gently guides you on a path to your own core, by making three very brilliant distinctions on Truth, Love, and Power. These three values prove to be fundamental in living the most fulfilling life that is most suited for you.

I feel like a lot of other self-help books give you fish. They give you a specific idea, or specific tool, that can help you solve one specific problem. This book is different, because it doesn’t just give you tools, but it teaches you how to make tools — it trains your mind for problem solving, and that’s a skill you could take anywhere in life.

Honesty With Yourself

In the very first chapter of this book, there is a small self-assessment that asks the reader to honestly evaluate the area of their life. This evaluation isn’t based on where you currently stand, but on the path that you’re heading on.

After doing the evaluation, I decided that I needed to jump start my personal health and fitness goals. I’m 23, and I’m pretty healthy, but looking at my path I was just gaining weight by under exercising and overeating on empty calories. I ended up with a 1 rating for my health, and began to take action. Only three weeks into this month and I’ve already lost 13 pounds, noticeably improved my diet, and ran two official races with New York Road Runners.

I read personal development books all the time, and I write about it on my site, and despite of this I’m just as capable of getting into a slump as the next guy. Steve Pavlina’s book not only motivated me, but refreshed what I already know about commitment to goals, progressive improvement, and persistence.

While going through this past month, with the knowledge of Steve Pavlina’s book stirring inside my mind and my soul, I’ve noticed several synchronicities. The first thing I’ve already mentioned is the marked improvement to my overall health. The second thing I noticed is more income opportunities that I’m able to cash in on, such as getting extra work, making more from internet marketing, and disabling certain money spending habits that were not constructive.

Lastly, I noticed a huge markup in my networking opportunities. I’ve met several people that are going to be invaluable in my career, and others that will be very instrumental for my friends and inner circle. I’ve also connected with really interesting people, both online and off, that are going to make tremendous contributions to the flourishing future of this website.

Free Preview

Steve Pavlina and the team at Hay House publishing are nice enough to offer a preview of Personal Development for Smart People. They sent me a copy of the Introduction and Chapter 1 (Truth) that I can distribute. I know chapter 1 in and out, and I know that after reading it you’re going to want to go out and buy the book.

Download PDSP Intro and Chapter 1

One thing I particularly enjoyed about the first chapter, after it describes all of the components of truth in detail, are the examples of every day blocks to truth that we face.

The Core Message of the Book

Seek truth with open eyes. Courageously accept your discoveries and their consequences. Rid your life of falsehood, denial, and fear of what is. Make truth your ally, not your enemy. This isn’t easy, but it is correct.

Share your love openly. Connect with yourself and others by tuning in to the connection that already exists. The risk of rejection is overshadowed by the rewards of loving connections. Whenever you feel disconnected, reach out and connect with another human being. Remember that you’re always loved.

~Steve Pavlina

Order Now

The book is in stores, and on All that’s left for you to do is take advantage of this opportunity and get your very own copy.

Posted by in Book Review | October 31, 2008 | Digg | | Stumble | Print | 14 comments

  • Lines

    Download link doesn’t appear to work…

  • Alex Shalman

    Yea I spotted that. Working to fix it right now!

  • Alex Shalman

    I just tried it and it works. It didn’t count my download because I am the admin. We’ll see in a few minutes.

  • Developmental Book Fan

    Thanks for the review. I’m always looking for books that allow me to develop as a person while also developing financially. I’ll have to check this out – also thanks for the download.

  • Alex Shalman

    You’re welcome. Enjoy the intro and chapter 1 and then go on a order your copy for your home book shelf.

  • kara

    Thanks Alex – I’ve listened to Steve’s podcasts on my long runs – he always inspires!

  • Alex Shalman

    @Kara I’ve listened to Steve’s podcasts while walking and running as well, as well as Covey’s, Rohn’s, Robbins’, Tracey’s, and hundreds of others… Yes, Steve has been one of my favorites since I discovered him and continues to inspire me, and most importantly to think and grow consciously 😉

  • Marc Alexander

    Alex, I really enjoyed your review…. and your blog. I’m reading “The Success Principles” by Jack Canfield right now. I’m excited to implement the practices into my life. Keep up the great work on your blog!



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  • Alex Fayle | Someday Syndrome

    Thanks Alex. I’m looking forward to reading the preview. There are so many personal development books out there, it’s hard to know what’s worthwhile.

    My current favourite is Daniel Gilbert’s Stumbling on Happiness which is more an investigation into the reality of happiness rather than pure personal development but it definitely sheds light on my thoughts, actions and feelings.

  • Charm6781_Yatie

    This is a good book review…i will go and look for this at Borders. Will share more with you of what i think about the book. Thanks.

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