The Book Whisperer Recommends an Unusual Self-Help Book


Uncommon Courage: An Invitation by Andrea T. Edwards has received a great deal of praise. After reading much of the book, but not all of it, I am inclined to agree with those who have found the book helpful, useful, and thought-provoking—and yes, even funny. Uncommon Courage is not the kind of book I read often. I chose it because of words like passionate, inspirational, powerful, and honesty others have used to describe it.

Given the state of the world today and the past two years of continuing angst over COVID and other things we cannot control, I felt that Uncommon Courage offered me a respite—perhaps even a road map of sorts—from fear and a way to regain optimism.

Uncommon Courage does not have to be read straight through. A reader can choose by chapter what to read and return to those chapters that are most meaningful to each individual.  For example, some of the chapters that called to me most loudly include the following: “Worry is a Waste of Time,” “Find Your Purpose,” “Trust Your Own Counsel,” “Focus on the Best People,” “Self-Empowerment,” and “The Beauty of Abundant Thinking.” That does not mean the other chapters are insignificant—and there are 108 chapters altogether!

Let’s begin with “Self-Empowerment.” First, Edwards begins with humor: “I have a classic monkey mind.” Who describes herself this way? Well, clearly, Andrea Edwards, but what does she mean? She explains, “[my mind] bounces around and it’s always on. It’s curious and it’ll try anything. It is open to everything.” How could I resist reading further?

“Focus on the Best People” is the next chapter that I would like to point out. As one who feels drawn to others and who enjoys interacting with other people, I found this chapter meaningful. Edwards admonishes her readers “to be a positive contributor in the world and your community.” Those are things I strive to do already, so finding additional advice on the subject of contributing intrigued me. I like her advice to let people know when they deserve praise. I try to act on that in my own life and through the organizations, both formal and informal, to which I belong. I hope that I succeed. One of her comments, “expect to have the best version of yourself reflected back when you make the conscious effort to help the people around you see themselves in a more beautiful way,” really touched a chord in me.

Readers should also know that throughout Uncommon Courage, Edwards has supplied worksheets that guide the readers in their own self-discovery. I found the questions associated with each worksheet helpful and on point.

Uncommon Courage is the kind of book to keep and return to in times of need—and those needs will be varied. Sometimes a reader may simply need a lift; other times, the same reader may be looking for inspiration. Edwards has written a book that will be useful for a long time.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s