Wednesday, August 22, 2012

The Anatomy of Peace: Resolving the Heart of Conflict by Arbinger Institute

Title: The Anatomy of Peace: Resolving the Heart of Conflict
Author: Arbinger Institute
Reviewer: Karen
Genre: Adult Self-Help/Non-Fiction/Fiction (I'll explain below)
Rating: FABULOUS!!!!
Alerts/Warnings: None
Premise: "The world over, seemingly intractable situations are a source of frustration and anxiety. Sometimes it seems like no matter how much people may try to make things work, their best efforts continually fail. Whether a thorny relationship with a parent, a boss that just doesn't get it, or even warring people on the nightly news, these difficult situations often lead to waves of bitterness and regret. "The Anatomy of Peace" offers a potent solution to this devastating problem. Written as an engaging story, the book shows how mistaken views of ourselves can cause us to misread situations and exacerbate the issues we wish to improve. Arguing that it is only after we understand ourselves and get our internal house in order that we can correctly confront external conflicts, the book shows what can be done to make that happen, and how to make inner peace a potent tool for achieving outer satisfaction" (King County Library System)
Opinions:This book is FANTASTIC!!! I originally wasn't sure what to think when my husband came home from work reading this book.  When he was finished he told me that his boss had given it to his entire team and even suggested that their spouses read it as well.  Now I love a good self-help book, but when someone else tells you that you need help, if you are like me, my guard instantly went up and it may take a while to let it down again.  I was well prepared not to like this book. 

What surprised me is that even though this is a leadership training self-help book it is written in the style of a story--and a great one at that.  The characters are compelling and easy to relate to. The thoughts discussed throughout the story are profound and enlightening.  And the creativity superb.  What a powerful method of teaching how to see within oneself and honestly find areas that need improvement in order to establish an environment of peace that helps while dealing with all types of outer conflict. 

That is why I was unclear as to where this book fits within a genre, because its a self-help about non-fiction issues, but presented through a story. When I put this book down I kept thinking about the characters and how they might have implemented the changes in their life, and wished that there was a sequel.  Well, guess what? There sort of is.  Technically it was written six years prior to this book, but Leadership and Self-Deception: Getting out of the Box carries on the premise of this book describing how to implement the changes from this story within a work environment.  I look forward to reading that as well.

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