Reading, Self Nurturance

The Renaissance Soul: Life Design

If you’ve talked to me recently, I’ve probably told you about this great book I’ve read recently called The Renaissance Soul: Life Design for People with Too Many Passions to Pick Just One by Margaret Lobenstine. I’m spending time each day working through the exercises and trying to figure out how to move forward with difficult decisions in my life, primarily those concerned with the area of work and “career”. I strongly recommend this book to anyone who feels in need of life guidance during a time of transition and is the type of person who has a million interests on the go at once. (Click here to go to Margaret Lobenstine’s web site and do the quiz to see if you fit the profile.) I very much admire her practical exercises. I have enthusiastically started other books and done the exercises up to the point where I turned a page and said to myself, “Oh. I can’t do that!” This book is definitely doable. She recommends that readers choose 4 or 5 focal points to focus on for a time, knowing that these can and will change in the future. I found limiting the focal points to only 4 incredibly difficult, but she has an exercise to help the reader zero in on the 5 most important values operating in his or her life right now. Again, that exercise was hard, but I stuck with it and did it more than once over 2 weeks. Now I have a set of 5 values that I know are important to me right now and I can check potential choices to see if they are working with or against those values. Later in the book she has a great exercise called “The Prism Test” which is a method of evaluating a potential focal point by looking at price, reality, integrity, specificity and measurability. She has a lot to say about time management for Renaissance Soul types, which is useful and unlike what I’ve read before, a section aimed at young people who are choosing universities, and wonderful suggestions about how to treat choices about potential jobs—a job should be viewed in terms of how it can advance the reader’s focal points in one or more areas. She also explains how “umbrella careers” can work for Renaissance Souls. The book has nice illustrative stories about her clients (she’s a life coach) and is clearly and enjoyably written. There are a few books that I consider “life-changers” for me, and I’m sensing that this one, rather than becoming a passing infatuation, is going to be on my life list.

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