The Intelligent Optimist’s Guide to Life is condensed enough for me to call it a “must read”.
As a reader, you will not get bogged down in a lot of detail as to why it is better for you to re-frame your thinking from negative to positive. You will experience an organized argument supporting that perspective with the research all footnoted.
The author, Jurriaan Kamp, is the Co-Founder of The Intelligent Optimist magazine, and a Netherlands’ born journalist by training. He is also old enough to have experienced first hand journalism at its best — and then experience the painful slide into its current state of psychic terrorism. A favorite sentiment from the book suggests our problem is not freedom of the press but freedom from the press. He swiftly positions the argument that since World War II, media went from informing the public to being a front for selling consumer goods through advertising. Add the ‘innovation’ of CNN and the 24 hour news cycle, and the weapon of media distortion was created. Just like the atom bomb, some of the smartest people around contributed to the creation of this weapon without fully understanding the implications for decades to come.
But, of course,there is hope. Like a true optimist convert, Jurriaan devotes only about 25% of the book laying out the negative implications and 75% to solutions, hope and actions you can choose to take. Now do you see why I like this little book?
Do yourself a favor. Buy the book, read it and act on the suggestions. It is the best holiday gift you could give yourself. Happy December!