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  • File Size: 5093 KB
  • Print Length: 405 pages
  • Publisher: Hay House (September 19, 2017)
  • Publication Date: September 19, 2017
  • Language: English

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I was not prepared to like this book. I’ve never met the author or heard him speak, but I admit to having a bias against the premise that is at the heart of all consulting—that everything can be taught. It’s not a false assumption; it’s just not a complete one. Context is everything, which is why history often has less to teach us than we may think.

Too many books of this genre are written by people who have been drinking the Kool-Aid and come to believe they have discovered the true essence of water. Burchard, thankfully, is not that author. You may not agree with everything he writes, but you will ultimately conclude that he is authentic, and that’s about the highest compliment I can pay a person.

Every good consultant will start their session with their objective. Brendon is no exception. “This book is about how people become extraordinary, and why others block themselves from that possibility. It will show clearly and unmistakably why some excel, others fail, and far too many never even try.” A few pages later he adds, “It will reveal what it takes to become not just an achiever but a high performer—someone who creates ever-increasing levels of both well-being and external success over the long term.”

Then comes the hook. Every consultant knows the old saying, “Them that can, do; those that can’t, teach.” That’s why they always give you the pièce de résistance, the handful of words that describes why their idea is different. It can normally be shown as a geometric shape or simple graph. In this case, it is, “High performance is not achieved by a specific kind of person, but rather a specific set of practices, which I call high performance habits.”

At this point, I admit, my expectations were being met. And then things went from bad to worse. “Taken together, the six habits you’ll learn here won’t just get you to excellence, they’ll make you happier—and the data proves it. The positive emotions of engagement, joy, and confidence that define the high performer’s emotional state can be yours.”

Happier? I am a sexagenarian who has known modest success and far less modest failure. If there is one thing I’ve learned it is that happiness will not give your life meaning or you contentment. Having the world by the tail is not the path to a purposeful life.

But I persevered through the book. I am a curious person and do not give up easily. And the author has achieved more success in high performance coaching than most of us will ever achieve in much of anything. He has a Rolodex (an outdated term, for sure) of the most powerful and influential people on the planet, from Oprah to past presidents and Olympians.

I read the book pretty much straight through although I have long practiced one of the tidbits of advice the author offers. I refuse to multi-task and believe it is the scourge of inefficiency and incomprehension. But I do believe in taking breaks, in changing the scene, and augmenting the primary objective (in this case, reading) with the indulgence of a good coffee or a piece of chocolate.

I won’t share the six habits of high performance (HP6) that are the heart of the book. And the reason is that we don’t learn if we don’t learn in context. And that task is up to the author, not me, a reader.

I will tell you that one thing all six habits have in common is that they are deliberate. They require conscious effort. There are no little green pills. The book, in fact, might have been called The Power of Being Deliberate.

Burchard is also not a therapist. “I’ll remind you, I am not a psychologist, psychiatrist, neuroscientist, biologist, or any other title I’m aware of that ends in ‘-ist.’ I am a professional high performance coach and trainer who is paid for results, not discussion or theory.” Fair enough. That’s probably what most people who will consider this book are looking for. Otherwise you’d be in the religion or philosophy sections.

There is some jargon but it’s admittedly modest for a book of the genre. There is talk of prolific quality output (PQO, of course), and “performance necessity,” and you will have to get your head around, “They [high performers] remember that the main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing.” It’s a central theme.

The HP6, as I was reading the book, did remind me of a variant of cognitive behavioral therapy but that’s not a criticism. It’s a function of the very deliberate nature of the process and practices described. In the end, high performance, as Brendon describes it, is a verb, not an achievement. “Connection [for example] is less about comfort than about challenge.” (I personally think it’s about trust.) And, “…it’s so thoroughly obvious that high performers are generating the feelings they want more often that taking the emotions that land on them.”

My biggest pause came with the quote: “The meaning of life is whatever you ascribe to it.” It’s a quote from Joseph Campbell, an American writer known for his work in comparative mythology. He’s probably most often remembered for the counsel, “Follow your bliss.” It’s a quote that is often misinterpreted but is a little too nihilistic for my taste.

And when he writes, “There are only two narratives in the human story: struggle and progress,” my first thought was that Camus would disagree. But that’s too much of a digression to get into here.

The money line for me was, “Superiority draws us off track a quarter inch at a time.” This is a man who believes in his mission. It is a quality that resonates throughout the book and is, perhaps, the book’s greatest contribution. Too many “successful” people, in my experience, talk humility, but walk superiority. Humility is not an attitude. It is a way of living.

It was here that the author earned my 4 rating. The book is probably longer than it needs to be but, in the end, I found it worth the journey. It’s an ambitious work by a man that obviously believes in what he does. And that is undoubtedly why he has known such success.,My husband and I have been following and reading everything Brendon shares! I wish i had the words to describe how incredibly impactful and life changing his words are. He makes you think outside the box and alter your perspective immediately. This book is a game changer in a lot of ways and I’ve personally really connected with it since I’m about to me a mom for the first time - so I want to teach my son these values as he grows older.
Thank you Brendon, your commitment and dedication to the world is invaluable!
Love you bud!,If you only purchase one personal growth book this year, make it High Performance Habits by Brendon Burchard.

The bookshelves in my home are lined with books about personal growth. However, not one of them can compare to the practical, applicable, and powerful advice offered by this NYT bestselling author and high performance coach. High Performance Habits is research-based and results-oriented. All the information, tips and strategies included in its pages are easily understood and applied. Each chapter provides clearly defined habits—ones discovered through scientific studies—and action steps to help you develop new behaviors and mindsets. Each chapter also includes an anecdote to illustrate the need for and application of a particular habit. This gives the reader context and a deeper level of understanding.

I highlighted most of this book; I had a hard time identifying anything I didn’t want to highlight! And its pages are decorated with an entire package of Post-It notes so I can find the most important sections easily.

I’ll be referring High Performance Habits regularly and checking on my progress. As a Certified High Performance Coach, I’ll be recommending this book to all my clients and just about anyone I know. I know it will transform their lives and help them step into the people they know they can be. Plus, it will help them achieve their goals.

Brendon Burchard is a trusted source for information on high performance and personal growth, and he spent many years researching this topic. You won’t find a more solid or compelling argument to level up and step into your best self than this book. Nor will you find a better person to help you apply these concepts to your life and develop the habits you need to succeed. If you want to level up personally and professionally, this is just the book you need.

Read High Performance Habits every year…it’s that necessary, especially if you want to reach your potential and make a greater impact in the world.,"The How to Book for High Performance" This book gives you the step by step how to achieve at much higher levels in EVERY AREA of your life. By reading this book, I was able to specifically pin point the areas I excel in and the areas I need work in and target precise actions to improve daily. "COMPLETELY AWESOME" text book for learning and achieving. My favorite part of this book is that it began by dispelling the myths of
"you either have it or you don't" It is not race, gender, financial status that determine High Performance. That is THE MOST POWERFUL part of this book. The acknowledgment that it is possible to constantly be learning and achieving at higher and higher levels THROUGHOUT LIFE, is completely the opposite of what we have always been led to believe and taught. This book is GROUND BREAKING and WORLD CHANGING.

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