Sunday, July 17, 2016

The 100 Simple Secrets of Happy Families - David Niven Ph.D.

It's a book that someone left at home and I picked it up to see what David Niven Ph. D. had to say about happy families. Truth be told I picked it up because I wanted to see the structure and how it would work because I have a similar project on hand - and not so much as to make a happy family at home. But by the end I picked a couple of ideas that will help me make things better.
Harper One, 200 p
Te book's structure has a short introduction, a short story or an example and the research on which it is based. It discusses many issues families have - competitive siblings, dysfunctional families, bringing children up alone, grandfathers and kids, what kids crave for, how relationships can be mended, what family members expect, what older people want, and so many other issues.

What comes across is how people find strength in families and how much they miss home support by just ignoring that huge aspect, how friends and extended families can help if we see them for the strengths they bring and not just ignore them for their faults - perceived and real. To understand that no one comes without faults is the first thing and to know that one can go through life much more easier if they work together rather than alone is another. Being open, communicating, being supportive, being forgiving will make lives and relationships far better according to the book.

More interestingly I found what I was looking for. The lead in paragraph which set the context, though it was just a few lines, was really boring. Worse, it took the focus off the key point and I struggled through six or seven small one pagers without understanding a word. Before discarding the book I decided to give it one one last try and decided to ignore the first para and read only the story. Ah, huge difference. I could easily read the stories, make sense of it, check out the research on which it was based and make some sense. Cut out that first boring para is the lesson.

It's the stories my friend, not the gyan. Leave the reader to make sense of what he has read - don't make sense of it for her.  

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