Saturday, January 13, 2018

Thirty Days of Motivation by Penny Jones

On November 18, 2017, I participated in the Minnesota Black Authors Expo, as I reported on this blog. I got to know and talk with another author, Penny Jones-Richardson, whose table was next to mine. We shared our professional experiences--hers as a life and transformational coach, motivational speaker and author, and mine as an educator and cultural consultant. Later, to learn more about her work, I visited her website.

At the Expo, I bought her book, Thirty Days of Motivation: A Guide to Reaching Your Goals and Staying Focused. It is a collection of thirty short articles, each less than a page and half, but laden with useful reflections and encouragement.

Each article deals with a specific topic about life's challenges and offers advice on how to deal with and overcome them. It identifies typical obstacles to personal success, such as fear, procrastination, lack of selfconfidence and complacency. The author shares personal experiences and anecdotes, and addresses the reader in a personal way. You feel she is talking to you, asking questions and inviting you to think about issues in new ways. Whatever you are going through, and whatever doubts you might have about your situation, she offers assurance and hope.

I have enjoyed this book, not only for what it says, but also for how it communicates. I have learned, from the success of my own book, Africans and Americans: Embracing Cultural Differences, that storytelling, rather than abstract theorizing, is the best way to reach and touch people. Thirty Days of Motivation is such a book. Anecdotal and confessional, it communicates simply and clearly. It is a book one can read again and again. I recommend it, especially to young people, who might not be sure where they are going in life and who might have doubts about themselves and their prospects.