Reading Situations Matter was pure pleasure. I savored every section and idea and wondered who would ever think a book about the mundane moments of living, those that we take for granted, would have such a profound effect on our lives and outcomes of our actions? It was similar to taking a camera outside on a sunny winter’s day and finding the most common item, snapping the picture only to discover that the tiniest details emerged and were revealed to your delight. This image stimulated the mind to make a change in perception that would forever be imprinted. One would certainly know themselves better.
This is a psychology book or self-help book that was written by an award- winning professor at Tufts University – Sam Sommers. As much as I enjoyed reading Situations Matter, I am sure I would have enjoyed being in the lecture hall and participating in the seminars even more. I like reading about studies done and how an author interprets them for us to understand, but when it is entertaining as well that corners my enthusiasm. I completed the exercises shared in the book, guessed at what the process was going to present to me and was pleased when I added the author’s interpretation and analysis. I always like to feel like I learned something which would assist me in becoming a better person. I found myself wanting to tell others about what I was reading and enjoying.
“Research shows that context impacts even the most intimate aspects of our lives, and this conclusion offers to those who embrace it insight as well as competitive advantage.”
The author’s style of writing, conveying information, and storytelling was indeed a part of my attraction for this book. Sommers was definitely asking one to be responsible to what they gained by the experience and to pay attention. I am sure his humor and entertaining style is a boon to contemporary college students who seem to crave the easy hook. The author was able to cajole the reader and I am certain the student into making a deeper connection and stimulating some more follow through. He included lessons gleaned from newborns and 4 year olds that truly puts perspective plainly on the table and opens the eyes to the greater context. The analysis of some Seinfeld episodes were as noteworthy as the revelations about why in large urban centers people do not come to the aid of others in crisis and why that is an important survival technique. City planners need to design this information into their concepts and expectations processes. Situations do Matter.
The chapters on Love and Hate I had to read several times.
“When you assume that there’s a true core self waiting to be discovered, that’s when your potential seems limited and the world around you is full of threats to be rationalized away….”
“…you should train yourself to view intellect as a muscle that grows with effort and atrophies with neglect.”
“The self is flexible”
I can highly recommend this book to each one of you and give Situations Matter a 5 ladybug rating.
I want to thank TLC book tours for asking me to review this book and Riverhead Books part of Penguin for sending me a draft copy early on so I could enjoy the book over several months.
The most amazing fact I learned from this book is that our minds develop US and THEM situational thinking in less time that it takes to sneeze! Did you read a book recently that helped you change your mind? Please share it with us in the comments or how about a new fact that made a difference to you?
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