Book Review: Layoff Reboot
Okay, what am I doing with a book about layoffs on a de-cluttering blog? Well… I found out about this book today and decided to read it while it’s FREE. I mean, it is an odd book to mention on this blog, isn’t it? But you know, when I saw the title, I realized that it has a broader application to reinventing your (workforce) career to doing what you really want to do. It can apply to a lot of situations. The point being, if the way you are living some part of your life isn’t how you want that part to go, you can often change it.
For example: Kaye hated the constant clutter. She “rebooted” how she views things and took steps to take control of her life in that way. Her job is a homemaker. She just didn’t like how she was doing that job.
In the same way, I see myself in this book. I see that I don’t like how I’m managing my time and that I could use a reboot, so I took some notes as I read the book—little things to keep before me as I get on track. I wrote lists like:
Things I want to do: (Fun stuff and important stuff… things like going to Seattle, paying off IRS early, making new Roman shades for my room… etc.)
Routines to establish: (to get the house in shape and keep it there, shopping routines so I just do it without dreading, new school year routines, etc.)
Housekeeping: (weeding out the books in the back room, weeding out the excess in stamps, sanding down the counters, cleaning off and out the kitchen counters, organizing the shed…)
Productivity: Deciding what will help me be the most productive in writing… and DOING it. (yours could be what will make cooking streamlined, teaching most effective, calling clients about your direct sales business, or whatever. Mine was writing, obviously)
She then sets you out to looking for what actually interests you. I thought that was genius, because I know so many people who really don’t know what they want to do with their lives. They have this nebulous idea that there’s more to it than what they’re giving or getting from it but don’t feel like they can change that. This is kind of the premise behind Living Past Forward. So I was eager to see what she’d say about how to discover that in yourself.
Obviously, I’m not going to give away her whole book here, but since the book is FREE today and tomorrow, I figure it won’t cost you much to discover that on your own. I will have to modify it because her method, while very effective for almost everyone I’ve ever talked to, is the one planning tool that just doesn’t work for me. But I have learned how to modify it to fit my personal style. What I LOVED about it is once you have that brainstorming session done, she recommends choosing one big goal and making it your priority. And, I couldn’t help but LOVE that she seems to hold to my theory of “perfection.” My motto is: “Perfect isn’t without flaw. Perfect is DONE.” I have to tell myself this often or I’ll get bogged down in the most ridiculous details and miss the big picture. My birthday card isn’t ruined and unusable if the sentiment is .0125” crooked. Most won’t notice. Those who do can be happy in the knowledge that they found my flaw. Win/win!
I loved that through this process, Ms. Kenney found her calling. This is a huge part of Living Past Forward—discovering and embracing that calling. I define calling as the unique contribution you have to offer this world.
And this is where her book took off. She really made an effort to take that fun/idea list and run with it—turn it into an actionable list of things that are important to her and make them happen. GENIUS.
Look, there’s nothing in this book that someone probably hasn’t said somewhere. I’m pretty sure Solomon’s words prove that. However, Courtney Kenney has taken the content and compiled it into a fresh look at the topic with easy steps to take to make similar changes for you in your life. I will be referring to this book for several weeks as I choose my own reinvention. And that’s the point. This book isn’t just about corporate people out of a job and looking for a new career path. I’m a homeschooling housewife who happens to write a LOT of books. I want to reinvent a lot of what I do. It works for parents who want to change how they want to relate with their children, and I even think it would work for someone who CAN’T leave their job but wants to make it more rewarding—right where he/she is!
One thing I think is really important is to be prepared to reinvent HER plan. If schedules with hourly breakdowns send you into fetal position, then don’t put times on it. Just put a list, in general order of where in the day you want to do it, and cross each item out as you get to it so that if you have to move “take Mom out to lunch” before “call client about meeting reschedule” you don’t forget to do that reschedule! It’s flexible. IF hourly works great for you, then do it! Go for it. That’s what I love about this book. The premise of the book alone gives “permission” for you to adjust what’s in it to fit where you want to go. It does what most self-help type books do—gets you inspired and on track to make change.
For example: One thing she discusses is doing the most important thing first thing. She knows that people need to do the most important things when you’re freshest. My problem is that I am freshest after being awake and moving for several hours. I’ve never been at my “top” first thing. When I was in school, I was on a self-paced program. The school always admonished us to do the hardest subjects (Math and English) first while we were “freshest.” I never did. I wasn’t freshest first thing in the day. I needed warm-up time. So, I’d do New Testament Survey, Social Studies, Science, and by that point, lunch was over and I could tackle Math and English. My brain had been primed, and I was good to go! So for me, I will be keeping my prime writing time after the family is in bed and asleep. Unlike her, I don’t and won’t do it right after waking. Trust me, you wouldn’t want to read it. LOL.
She has a chapter of tips and tricks. Again, most of this is stuff you’ve heard before. But the key is that she encourages you– don’t just be “hearers” of a good idea, maybe it’s time to be “doers” of it too! (Forgive me, Lord, for using Your Word WAY out of context. It just kind of applied…). She inspires you to start to take that idea and run with it!
So grab her book! Take a bit of time to read through it wearing lenses that fit your particular situation. As I read, I tried to make myself see it through Kaye’s eyes. It fit her reinvention to the proverbial T! However, no matter how hard I tried to keep it there, I found myself applying things to my life right now. I think the best thing about this book is that it inspires you to get going, start making changes, and DO the things you’ve been thinking of or FIND the thing that will enrich your life to be what you’ve suspected it COULD be.