Genuine Curiosity

Author Dwayne Melancon is always on the lookout for new things to learn. An ecclectic collection of postings on personal productivity, travel, good books, gadgets, leadership & management, and many other things.


A good book for our times

I just read my friend Rajesh Setty’s new book, “Upbeat: Cultivating the right attitude in tough times.”  I’ve been a fan of Rajesh’s work since I discovered him through his book “Beyond Code,” a couple of years ago.

This book is a perfect book for anyone who’s feeling victimized by today’s financial crises as it was prepared specifically to help people deal with today’s environment.  That said, I found a lot in this book that will help with improving your outlook on life, in general.

The approach Rajesh takes in this book upbeat coverwill help you decide whether you’ll be a victim of circumstance, or whether you’ll take responsibility for your own well being and try to improve your lot in life.  From there, he provides a number of examples and insightful observations to help you figure out how to overcome obstacles and anxiety.

Not just a “feel good” book

Don’t worry – this is not just a “feel good and good things will happen to you” kind of book.  Rajesh is a serial entrepreneur and has had lots of experience with both setbacks and successes, and he rolls all that experience into this short book.

The book is organized around 5 key areas:

  1. The Trap – this is how to keep the “gloom and doom” of everyday conversation from eroding your spirit, as well as how to look for the opportunities that will take you to the next level.
  2. The Discipline – this is about rituals and habits, as well as becoming a “lean and mean” player in the world.
  3. The Network – this is the traditional “help and be helped” networking approach, but also about how not to misuse networking tools (i.e. when Facebook becomes Fakebook).
  4. The Strategy – this is all about honing your focus and taking deliberate action.
  5. The Action – this deals with a notion I think of as “do the things you want to be known for” which will increase your chances of success when people are looking for a new member of their team.

The “Upbeat DIY Helpbook”

While the first part of the book focuses a lot on attitude, persistence, and commitment, the appendix is kind of like a set of mini-workshops.  Rajesh calls it the “Upbeat DIY Helpbook” and it creates short, introspective exercises to help move you along the right path.  I found that it put a fine point on many of the abstract concepts introduced in the beginning of the book and made it all seem more real.

In summary, this is a short book and an easy read, but don’t let it’s diminutive size fool you – there is a lot of power in these pages.  Oh – and I think Upbeat would be a great gift for you to give someone who finds themselves on the wrong side of this economy.

For more on Rajesh, be sure and check out his blog at