Awaken the Giant Within is a very different kind of self-help book written by Tony Robbins. Published in 1991, the book has sold over 10 million copies and has seen translations into over 38 languages. Many readers have claimed that the author has focused on psychological and emotional aspects of success – want it and you may have it. The book has many reviews on platforms like Goodreads and Amazon and is mostly tilted towards thumbs-up votes. As you can see, a 1991 publication is still attracting readers! There must be something genuine, peculiar and wonderful about the book. Tony Robbins wrote many other books and his recent publications were Money: Master the Game, 2014 and Life Force in 2022. In this book review article, I will try to bring to the fore the qualities of Awaken the Giant Within (as well as the aspects that could have gone redundant or may have become repetitive for many).
Discussing the book, Awaken the Giant Within is certainly a comprehensive guide to personal development. The author, Tony Robbins, covers a broad range of topics. Things like setting a goal, time management, managing personal’s finance, relationships, and health and fitness find important space in the book. The writer also provides readers with a variety of tools and techniques to help them achieve their goals and locate (after defining) their success. There are different parts in the book. Every part takes up an issue and the author has tried to deliberate on the same.
Talking about the style of the author, Robbins’ writing style is clear (and engaging at times). It must have been a game-changer in the times the book was published. The writer uses a combination of personal stories, scientific research, and practical advice to make his points. This style helps in penetrating the readers’ psyche on many fronts. As somewhat expected as I read the book, the author has included a number of exercises and worksheets to help readers apply the concepts he discusses. So, stories, lessons, ideas, emotional appeals and exercises – a perfect (somewhat) combination for success?
Awaken the Giant Within has been praised by critics and readers, though we cannot say alike. The book has been appreciated by readers for many reasons… however, many readers have claimed that the book is just another one in the cliche… and does not bring anything new. Except for the fact that the author has tried to play some games on the psychological plain… Nevertheless, many readers have said that the book has been a life-changing book for them! And the book, many claim, can exhibit the potential to change someone’s life on many scales.
In brief, here are details about the sections or parts of the book. I have tried to bring the major details from the sections so that a reader can understand whether the book is useful for him or her or not.
Part I: The Power of Decision
In the first part of the book, Robbins deliberates on the importance of making decisions and taking action accordingly. The author argues that we are all capable of achieving great things. However, we often hold ourselves back because fear making mistakes or failing in the execution of the task at hand. And the writer encourages readers to overcome their fears and take risks. He provides them with a number of tools that may help them in making the best decisions. This part, however, just assumes that we are all capable of doing great things and completely ignores the external and circumstantial factors which might tie someone’s hands (and fate, to an extent).
Part II: The Power of Belief
This section of the book Awaken the Giant Within by Robbins is very important. Though the section just carries forward the messages discussed in the first part of the book, there are many new things as well. Our beliefs and how they can shape our reality is something that we all know, somehow and somewhat. However, just by believing that we can have something or do something great, we cannot succeed. Nevertheless, Robbins argues that our beliefs are often based on outdated information or experiences and that we can change our beliefs by changing our thoughts and behaviours. Like in the first part, the writer provides the readers with a number of exercises, ideas, and tools to help them identify their limiting beliefs and replace them with more empowering ones. The section, however, once again just finds its feet in the dampness of belief. It is good in theory, and perfect in the abstract, but everything depends on the execution, once again.
Part III: The Power of Emotions
In this section, Robbins discusses the importance of our emotions. The author discusses that they can affect our thoughts, behaviours, and ultimately our results in many different ways. It is true as well! Our emotions do play a major role in shaping our lives. Tony Robbins argues that we have the power to control our emotions. By learning the art, and by understanding how they work, we can be in a position to develop new emotional habits. The chapter is indeed helpful and the author conveys his ideas in a lucid and effective way. He provides readers with a number of exercises to help them identify and manage their emotions.
Part IV: The Power of the Mind
In the fourth section of the book, the author focuses on the power of the mind. Our minds are the powerhouses with many ideas and we learn how to take maximum benefits from those, we can succeed on the grand scale. The writer argues that we can use our minds to create the life we want. It can be achieved by programming our subconscious mind with positive thoughts and images. The author provides many instances to prove his points. Further, he provides readers with a number of exercises to help them reprogram their subconscious minds. You may enjoy reading this section of the book if you are an optimistic person relying on your intellectual prowess (like many persons with zeal and determination).
Part V: The Power of Action
In this final section of the book, Robbins argues in favour of action. The importance of taking action and how it is the key to achieving our goals remain at the centre of the arguments that the author makes. He writes in detail about how we can achieve anything we set our minds to if we are willing to act and never give up hope. Steadfast action is the key – if you want to get the one message from this section of the book. Like other sections, the author provides readers with a number of exercises to help them develop a plan of action and take consistent action towards their goals.
To end the review, I have listed the takeaways from the book.
- In short, we all can act and achieve great things in life!
- What we believe, we become! Belief is the key!
- Yes, if we learn, we can control our emotions and make use of the same.
- Use the mind and we can achieve whatever we want.
- Act… it’s the key to success (the second key, perhaps).
Well, well, well! If you can find something useful, you are more than welcome to read this classic self-help book and set your feet on the path to success that the author promises. However, if you find that this book takes the same course that many other books have been doing in the past and the present, you can skip it and focus on your goals, for the better of yourself. I have found that many authors have overcooked the same stories many times. However, what differentiates different books from one another is the art of writing, the style of presenting the content and making the connection with readers. On these fronts, I should admit that Tony Robbins has done a good job, if not great. He has tried to fill the minds and hearts of his readers with positive air and inspired them to act. However, the flowery and abstract ideas that believing can make anything possible resemble religious ideals rather than self-help and inspirational ideas! You are a better judge… because you are the reader!
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Review by A Mishra for ReadByCritics book blog
Awaken the Giant Within by Tony Robbins – Book Review
Awaken the Giant Within by Tony Robbins is a classic self-help book… it offers the same pickle with a different (and decent) packaging. Inspiring… to a great extent… but over-inflated at times.