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I must confess, I do have a fondness for self-help books despite knowing that the promise rarely matches the reality and that there are few quick wins in life. However, my latest dive into self-help, Essentialism: The disciplined pursuit of less by Greg McKeown offered a clear and focused message that felt achievable and actually useful. It had a somewhat similar to the messaging from the Marie Kondo book in that it felt achievable and rooted in the real world.

Essentialism at its core advocates a pared back lifestyle focused on doing only what is necessary and enjoyable in order to have a great life.  A key theme that resonated with me was the idea of focus as a noun and a verb.  Mckeown explores the idea of focus not just as a way to be, but also as a way to do.  It’s my key takeaway from the book and something I hope to deliberate and develop over the next few months.  For McKeown, focus is and can be a dynamic, ongoing process that allows people to make the fundamental changes they want to. It is both static and moving.

The only critique that comes to mind about the book was as with many self-help book, Greg belabours his point and could have delved into the whys of essentialism. Otherwise a good entry in the world of productivity and self development.