My first in-depth book review!
Before reviewing his book, I can tell you that Jonathan Mead’s blog is one of the few blogs I read religiously. I stumbled upon it, thinking it was like all other personal development blogs (giving out the same information over, and over, and…). But, not being one to be judgmental without proof, I gave it a chance and read some of his posts. I was both hooked and proven wrong, instantly. His thought provoking posts and radical thoughts on subjects new and old pulled me in.
Anyways this is a post about his new book “Reclaim Your Dreams”, not about his amazing blog… So, let’s get to it.
**My book reviews shall be written from my point of view, and I shall approach each book as if I have no prior knowledge on the subject.**
First thing I notice about the eBook is the title “Reclaim Your Dreams”. I judge from this that Jonathan is saying that “You (the reader) have lost sight of your dreams” and ” I (Jonathan Mead) am going to help people you get them back”. This basically gives me leeway to put him under as much scrutiny as I want, because he has set himself up for the fall by position himself as “the reclaimer of dreams”. So I start reading.
I must say, I fell in love with the book’s design form the start. It’s simple, yet you can tell a lot of work went into it. Plus, it’s centered around the color red, which if you haven’t noticed, I love.
Contents & Preface
The contents and preface pages read like a “For Dummies” book in that they tell me how to use the book, and list the titles of each chapter. The kicker was that they gave me the ability to click on the titles and jump to specific chapters if I so desired. The preface informs me that the book is divided up into two parts. The first part is about “taking away everything that’s not working“, thus creating space for my dreams to grow. And, the second part is about “figuring out what my dreams actually are“, telling me what to fill that empty space with.
Jonathan starts of the prelude off with a great quote. He then explains why this book is different from the other countless “self-development” books out there. He writes that this is a book not meant to fit all, but meant to fit me (the reader) as an individual; finding this to be a refreshing approach, I keep reading.
He starts off by providing me with a thought provoking question, “Why do you live”? As he writes he eventually provides the answer to this question; It’s simplicity and profoundness is surprising.
Chapter one starts off as being the first chapter in the “un-brainwashing” half of the book. As I read this chapter I begin to get angry. Not angry at Jonathan, angry at the world. Jonathan explains how I have been fooled by the world, how I have been lead to accept things that are simply not true, and how I have been conned into living a life I don’t desire. But, kindly, he provides me with the first steps I can take in order to become un-brainwashed.
Chapter two’s title threw me off; it’s not a title I expected to find in a personal development book. He talks about caring, the template life, and permission, and I found myself agreeing with him. He goes even further and talks about the other things that don’t work in my life, and provides exercises I can do in order to better myself.
Jonathan talks about the last thing I need to do in order for me to be “un-brainwashed”. He basically wages an all out war on society and it’s ways with this chapter. He shows me how society has fooled me, and teaches me how to be un-fooled. The examples and exercises he gave on how to be un-brainwashed seemed so simply they border-lined on obvious. But they do work. This chapter turned out to be a favorite chapter of mine.
Chapter four starts off as the first chapter in the “reclaiming your dreams” part of the book. While the preceding chapters were about ridding myself of everything that doesn’t work, this section is about figuring what I personally (as a reader) need in order to accomplish my dreams, and ‘claim’ them.
Chapter four sets out to help me define my dreams. And it does just that. His idea of creating a “dream sanctuary” is just refreshing. I’ve never heard anybody else mention this, and frankly I don’t know why; The whole concept of the dream sanctuary is brilliant! He ends the chapter off by, once again, providing me with simply steps I can do in order to improve myself.
Chapter Five – Chapter Seven
When he starts off chapter five by quickly informing me that for the next three chapters he will talk about “the three keys to making my dreams happen”, how can I not continue reading with a big anticipating smile on your face?
When I read the titles of each of these chapters, again I was taken back. They’re “unconventional” titles to say the least. But, I found myself appealed by that; I want the unconventional approach! Although he said he would give me “three keys to making my dreams” happen, he lied. He actually gave me “ten“. Yes, ten. These ten keys described to me how I can overcome my fears (chapter five), reclaim ownership of my time (chapter six), and make money doing what I love (chapter seven).
And, as if ten keys on making my dreams a reality weren’t enough, Jonathan uses chapter eight to tell me three more things I need to know. At this point, Jonathan’s provided me with an overwhelming amount of information; More information than I expected, considering the price of the book.
The conclusion appears as if Jonathan is begging. Begging that I not waste my life, begging that I follow my dreams, begging that I apply what he talked about to my life, begging that I not become someone who regrets their life, and begging that I start now.
How can I say no to that? How can I not do as Jonathan asks when he has clearly given me instructions on how to properly make my own path in life? How can I say no, when through reading the book, my eyes will forever be open to the possibilities of what I can accomplish? How can I say no when Jonathan has not only provided me with the keys to my dreams, but worksheets that help me get my thoughts in order so that I can better follow them? I can’t.
Jonathan Mead, you’ve lived up to your book’s title. Although I would have loved to give the book a bad review, I can’t. You’ve started off every chapter with insightful quotes that I’ve never heard before, you’ve provided more than enough examples on how I can follow my dreams even more, and you’ve done it in a manner that doesn’t ask too much of me. I hope countless people read “Reclaim Your Dreams”, enjoy it, and learn from it as I have. And from my point of view, your wife’s patience has not been wasted, this is an amazing book.
Let me end this with the last quote found in the book:
“All dream, but unequally. Those that dream at night in the dusty recesses of their minds awake the next day to find that their dreams were just vanity. But those who dream during the day with their eyes wide open are dangerous people; they act out their dreams to make them reality.” ~ Thomas Lawrence
For all those that want to buy the book (and trust me, you will), you can simply click: