Steering by Starlight
great book

Steering by Starlight Details

TitleSteering by Starlight
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseMar 18th, 2008
PublisherRodale Books
ISBN-139781594866135
Rating
GenreSelf Help, Nonfiction, Spirituality, Personal Development

Steering by Starlight Review

  • John Stepper
    January 1, 1970
    "I have to warn you," said the woman who recommended this person to me. "It's a little woo-woo."I should not have liked this book. It's mystical and tries to be funny and there aren't nearly enough footnotes and ... I loved it.The ideas, the stories, the writing style. Excellent. In addition to being a joy to read, the book changed how I think which is perhaps the highest praise I can give.
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  • Chris Blocker
    January 1, 1970
    I'm not much for “self-help.” It's not my passion; because of this, I rarely buy into it. If the girl on the cover really knows what it takes to be a millionaire, why isn't she one? And if that guy is truly happy, why does he hide behind the face of an action figure? Wait, that isn't plastic, that is his face!!! All kidding aside, it's just not my thing. Enter Martha Beck.Martha Beck has come with high recommendations for years. Her angle, paraphrased: “You probably aren't doing what you want to I'm not much for “self-help.” It's not my passion; because of this, I rarely buy into it. If the girl on the cover really knows what it takes to be a millionaire, why isn't she one? And if that guy is truly happy, why does he hide behind the face of an action figure? Wait, that isn't plastic, that is his face!!! All kidding aside, it's just not my thing. Enter Martha Beck.Martha Beck has come with high recommendations for years. Her angle, paraphrased: “You probably aren't doing what you want to do in life... why the hell not?” She doesn't tell you what it is you want to do, or how to do it; rather, her method allows for self-discovery. It's a message I like, and one that I, along with everyone I know, struggle with.I don't know how to rate a self-help book and I'm not going to try. Was it helpful? Maybe. I'll let you know in a year (or five, ten...). Did it change my outlook? Certainly. Beck knows her stuff. No exaggeration, I was going through the steps Beck said I would go through before she said I would. The day following life changing circumstances, I read how the process has begun and how changes were around the corner. Hours after I woke from a vivid dream, heavy in symbolism, I found myself reading about how my dreams would reveal my purpose. Her method for decoding dreams was unique, but so much more logical than other methods. Will I take her advice? I'm going to try to as much as I can. I cannot throw caution completely to the wind, jumping from the ledge of my life and hoping to land in that traveling circus I've had my eyes on, but I'm going do what I can to move in that direction as quickly as possible. And I'm not going to be overly cautious either; I will walk along that edge until the moment I see a tent or an elephant below me, then I'll jump and just hope it all works out. So, yes, I buy into it.Did I enjoy the read? Not really. Beck ensures the reader that all the examples used are true, but I couldn't help but wonder if some were exaggerated a wee bit (or of gargantuan proportions). Beck tries to be funny and, well, honestly, she's just not funny to me. (Sorry, Martha.) She's also conscious of not bogging down the book with too much jargon, but it felt like too much to me. In the end, it was still a self-help book.Final Verdict: Insightful? Yes. Helpful? Possibly. Enjoyable? Not really.
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  • Deanna
    January 1, 1970
    Probably my favorite Martha Beck, who is always on my re-read cycle
  • Carolyn Hill
    January 1, 1970
    I love Martha Beck. Besides being an enviably wise woman, she's very funny. If I could hire a life coach, I'd want her. Though some of the material in this book is not really new, she presents it in her own fresh way. Like many, she advocates visualization meditations and she is indebted to the work of Byron Katie and others, but her explanations and illustrations with her own clients, as well as her own life, and her humorous and unique perspective make the examination of one's psyche less daun I love Martha Beck. Besides being an enviably wise woman, she's very funny. If I could hire a life coach, I'd want her. Though some of the material in this book is not really new, she presents it in her own fresh way. Like many, she advocates visualization meditations and she is indebted to the work of Byron Katie and others, but her explanations and illustrations with her own clients, as well as her own life, and her humorous and unique perspective make the examination of one's psyche less daunting. She has a great way of helping the reader detect their own imprisoning stories and mental constructs. I loved her explanation of the lizard brain, and the inner lizard versus the inner wizard. I'm better at recognizing those fear-based thoughts, now, and realizing, 'oh, that's just my inner lizard talking.' One needs to take time with this book and do the exercises. Not every part may be relevant to everyone (fortunately, many of us aren't dealing with dark arts practitioners, otherwise known as crazies, in our lives), but I think everyone could come away with something valuable from this book. I highly recommend it.
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  • Rebecca Waring-Crane
    January 1, 1970
    Martha's voice snagged me as I skimmed through an Oprah magazine in a waiting room several months ago. Her humor, intellect and sensible approach to life permeate her writing. I was hooked. I borrowed this title from my library system and worked through the journaling with a large dollop of skepticism. But again and again her matter of fact, simple (not easy) methods for moving toward my "north star" made sense. Her passing observation about the "empty elevator" rang so true it brought me up sho Martha's voice snagged me as I skimmed through an Oprah magazine in a waiting room several months ago. Her humor, intellect and sensible approach to life permeate her writing. I was hooked. I borrowed this title from my library system and worked through the journaling with a large dollop of skepticism. But again and again her matter of fact, simple (not easy) methods for moving toward my "north star" made sense. Her passing observation about the "empty elevator" rang so true it brought me up short. I laughed out loud as she described her dog's reaction to a garden statue. Before reading to the end I ordered a copy of my own (hurrah for Better World Books!). I want to read it all again and mark up the good bits.
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  • Sharon
    January 1, 1970
    The premise is good, but she lost me. Towards the middle I wanted to be done with the book, then towards the end it is all about her. So, I still don't know what to do with my life!
  • Nerissa Nields
    January 1, 1970
    This is, up to now, my favorite of Martha's books. She trained me as a life coach, and I think she is brilliant and hilarious. I have read almost all of her books. I am reading her latest, Wild New World, right now, and I like it even better than this one. Full of practical wisdom and steps to take to master your thoughts and change your life.
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  • Sharon
    January 1, 1970
    Wow.Just ... wow.This is by far one of the most helpful coaching books I have read. Sociologist Martha Beck, with her characteristic good humor, provides more insight and advice on how to get to your life purpose. She clearly explains the importance of the work, and how to recognize when you're on the right path. I laughed, I cried, I recognized myself in the pages. Suffice it to say that I found this book so profound that I wrote a thank-you note to Dr. Beck when I finished it. I will be using Wow.Just ... wow.This is by far one of the most helpful coaching books I have read. Sociologist Martha Beck, with her characteristic good humor, provides more insight and advice on how to get to your life purpose. She clearly explains the importance of the work, and how to recognize when you're on the right path. I laughed, I cried, I recognized myself in the pages. Suffice it to say that I found this book so profound that I wrote a thank-you note to Dr. Beck when I finished it. I will be using these tools for a long time to come.
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  • ♥ Ibrahim ♥
    January 1, 1970
    I like her quick wit, her being real, her charming sense of humor, her nuggets of wisdom. Frankly she has done for me much more than any of the books, theological books I might add, that I am planning on getting rid of soon. I love reading her and I can read her again and again with great relish and enjoyment. I can relate a lot to her in many ways.
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  • KC Anton
    January 1, 1970
    I skimmed this one as a comparison for my own work interest. She is coach of more then a decade. She works from a very "scientific method" mode; if the five senses are not involved neither is she. Starting here she moves into talking about things like "abundance,""manifestation,""intuition" with out using any of these words. So it is informative and wordy at times due to not wanting to use any spiritual key words to thus sound more business-like. Her methods and techniques are very good for open I skimmed this one as a comparison for my own work interest. She is coach of more then a decade. She works from a very "scientific method" mode; if the five senses are not involved neither is she. Starting here she moves into talking about things like "abundance,""manifestation,""intuition" with out using any of these words. So it is informative and wordy at times due to not wanting to use any spiritual key words to thus sound more business-like. Her methods and techniques are very good for opening awareness and understanding of conceptualizing goals in order to attain them. Old stuff for anyone around "spiritual law" concepts. Yet she develops them in a a great means of potential building which leads to the top of the roller coaster which of emotional impact to being open to feeling your experience of manifestation. If you are not used to feeling things, which folks picking this up probably will have difficulty with, she tries to take you to the top hill of the to roll down...you will still be scared stiff as you feel your life making changes. So there' the warning label for you. If you don't want to change...don't read.blessings,kc
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  • Victoria
    January 1, 1970
    I listened to this book on my conmute and I liked it a lot. It has a very structured approach to working through your ego and connecting to your Higher Self in a very workable format (at least for my brain). The metaphor of the Stargazer is very symbolic and helps to keep the focus on the Higher Self... The second chapter on the Reptilian Brain brought a lot of light into my primal fears...It is definitely a book to "work through", not a book to just read... the information without the exercises I listened to this book on my conmute and I liked it a lot. It has a very structured approach to working through your ego and connecting to your Higher Self in a very workable format (at least for my brain). The metaphor of the Stargazer is very symbolic and helps to keep the focus on the Higher Self... The second chapter on the Reptilian Brain brought a lot of light into my primal fears...It is definitely a book to "work through", not a book to just read... the information without the exercises would be just more junk for the left brain... She has a nice way of integrating other authors as Byron Katie and Eckhart Tolle and making a reasonable path... sort of a step by step de-cluttering and disarming of our ego and personal stories so we can connect to our Stargazer... very, very nice...I have actually enjoyed very much listening to it, as she is a very capable and enticing story teller...I will definitely buy this book to keep for my own study... The story at the end about her trip to South Africa is completely mesmerizing... another very good reason to read this book, if only for this!
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  • Ileana
    January 1, 1970
    One of the best self-help books I have ever read. Martha Beck is such an amazing writer and life coach. She does not disappoint with this gem. Lots of practical advice on how to steer your life by starlight."If you move toward freedom by saying and doing what is most honest for you, the result may be a beautiful, magnificent life of petting the dog, waiting tables, getting your teeth cleaned. This can be mind-bogglingly wonderful. "ordinariness," which our culture tends to see as disappointing, One of the best self-help books I have ever read. Martha Beck is such an amazing writer and life coach. She does not disappoint with this gem. Lots of practical advice on how to steer your life by starlight."If you move toward freedom by saying and doing what is most honest for you, the result may be a beautiful, magnificent life of petting the dog, waiting tables, getting your teeth cleaned. This can be mind-bogglingly wonderful. "ordinariness," which our culture tends to see as disappointing, is considered the highest manifestation of enlightenment in many other belief systems."
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  • Fee
    January 1, 1970
    I like Martha Beck's articles a lot because they combine personal notes with practical advice. This book does the same. However, the advice was a little too far out there for my taste. The first few chapters are great, but in chapter five readers are supposed to analyze their dreams. (not the daytimes ones) Then there is a chapter with Beck's version of 'the secret' and a later chapter describes the miracles readers can expect. I am sure all of this will be very inspirational for some, but not f I like Martha Beck's articles a lot because they combine personal notes with practical advice. This book does the same. However, the advice was a little too far out there for my taste. The first few chapters are great, but in chapter five readers are supposed to analyze their dreams. (not the daytimes ones) Then there is a chapter with Beck's version of 'the secret' and a later chapter describes the miracles readers can expect. I am sure all of this will be very inspirational for some, but not for me.
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  • JayeL
    January 1, 1970
    I wasn't able to finish this book. I think it is an interesting book, but I have too much self help on my hands right now and can't focus on the exercises the way I would like to. I am not a self help book reading kind of person, so in some ways I can't believe I even attempted to read it. I think that there are some excellent exercises. They seem to be easy, but when I tried them, they were harder than I thought.
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  • Katherine
    January 1, 1970
    I got a lot out of Steering by Starlight. It made me feel that my inner impulses are important, that I have them for a reason, and that the way to reach my potential is to follow my intuition instead of what others say I should do (or what those negative voices in my head say I should do). A very supportive book for those who are trying to move forward in their lives.
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  • Patricia Post
    January 1, 1970
    This is an inspiring and truly helpful book full of insight, humour and new skills to help anyone navigate their way in this challenging journey of living every day. It broadened my awareness and made me look at things in a new way, or rather in a way I'd always known about but hadn't trusted enough.
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  • Delindap7
    January 1, 1970
    I listened to this book on tape. It was really wonderful to hear Martha Beck read the book herself. She is so smart in communicating how to make such important changes and to do such important work. I will purchase the book for my own library.
  • Alyssa Haverfield
    January 1, 1970
    While the author can often get carried away with her metaphors to the point of distraction, underneath are some really great messages! She is also relatable and doesn't take herself so seriously, which helps with this sort of book.
  • Kristen
    January 1, 1970
    You know that tingle of inspiration that warms you from the inside out when you read something AMAZING? Get ready to feel it throughout this entire book.
  • Susan Faith
    January 1, 1970
    This book changed my life. I come back to it again and again. I use the concept of shackles on/shackles off daily.
  • Betsy
    January 1, 1970
    An invaluable companion to Finding Your Own North Star.
  • Mandy
    January 1, 1970
    I have enjoyed this book enough that I renewed it at the library twice and am planning to buy my own copy. Martha has clear exercises and examples to help give you direction, and also advises on how to tune into your gut in order to help determine whether an activity or job is "shackles on" or "shackles off" for you. By working through these things and tuning into yourself better, you'll be able to slowly chart a path to greater personal freedom.
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  • Magdelanye
    January 1, 1970
    This is a self-help book that will really get the reader into their own orbit.Smart, funny and engaging, MNB is never patronizing or self-inflated.Simple, but not simplistic, and easily comprehensible even for a reader like me, unfamiliar with her work. Having enjoyed this book, I am now eager to read the earlier volume as well as her two memoirs.
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  • Brigitte Staples
    January 1, 1970
    If you are content in your work and relationships you don’t need this book. If you feel a need to push through with your shackles rising and a heavy heart, or feel ‘hopelessly stuck’ or lost, Steering by Starlight holds the keys to setting yourself on the right path again, and staying on it.From the outset, Martha Beck (Expecting Adam, Leaving the Saints) warns this will be no ordinary process of seeking knowledge, setting goals, and analysing performance. You will need to suspend disbelief, alt If you are content in your work and relationships you don’t need this book. If you feel a need to push through with your shackles rising and a heavy heart, or feel ‘hopelessly stuck’ or lost, Steering by Starlight holds the keys to setting yourself on the right path again, and staying on it.From the outset, Martha Beck (Expecting Adam, Leaving the Saints) warns this will be no ordinary process of seeking knowledge, setting goals, and analysing performance. You will need to suspend disbelief, although this is no book of fiction or fantasy. If you fully commit to the sometimes unbelievable ride, you are likely to find yourself equipped with the practical skills for deep, lasting and soul-liberating re-alignment, with the life that feels right for you firmly in your sights.Replete with lizards, dungeons, star-charts, miracles and protagonists from the Dark Arts – it may sound too far out if you feel uncomfortable with everyday magic. But far from having her head in the mists of fantasy, Martha Beck has vast experience as ‘America’s best known life coach’ (USA Today), backed up by a rare intellect, and decades of study and research. Beck’s own extraordinary life, in which she has overcome obstacles that most of us would believe impossible, is a testament to both her courage and the efficacy of her process. To help her readers along the unique path that waits for each of them, she sets them up to expect to manifest those things in their lives that they believe are out of reach.Those willing to ‘bracket’ what she has to say long enough to reap the benefits will soon realise that embarking on the course to their right life may feel a lot like how Harry Potter must have felt, as he stood at Platform nine and three-quarters. But once through to one’s Stargazer-self the corpus of wizardry translates to the familiar challenges of navigation: replacing fear with love; challenging false beliefs; grounding one’s self in one’s inner core of peace; developing and trusting our intuition; and knowing when to bail out when confronted by intractable nutters.“Whenever outer-limit rewards escape us – when our hearts are broken, our trust betrayed, our health compromised, or our dreams dashed – [the] process of grieve-or-disbelieve is triggered, and our attachment to the shallow, material shell of life weakens. The gravitational pull of the Stargazer self draws us inward, trying to get us to the place where our hearts can heal once and for all and our real dreams comes true,” says Martha Beck. The alternative is to live out our days in the never-enough, lizard-eat-lizard, material land of the shallows with ‘the devil you know’. I know which I would prefer.http://bredit.com.au/Steering by Starlight: Find Your Right Life, No Matter What!
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  • Cal
    January 1, 1970
    SUCH A GOOD BOOK. I can't recommend it enough. If I had picked up this book a couple years ago, I would have been incredibly skeptical of the whole notion of extreme coincidence... but last year I was subjected to a week of increasingly unlikely coincidences for which there was no real explanation, but the repercussions of that week follow me very closely to the present moment. It was the first time in my life that I ever felt like there was at least a 20% chance that I was dreaming despite the SUCH A GOOD BOOK. I can't recommend it enough. If I had picked up this book a couple years ago, I would have been incredibly skeptical of the whole notion of extreme coincidence... but last year I was subjected to a week of increasingly unlikely coincidences for which there was no real explanation, but the repercussions of that week follow me very closely to the present moment. It was the first time in my life that I ever felt like there was at least a 20% chance that I was dreaming despite the fact that I was almost certain I was awake. It's very frightening and unsettling when it happens.. you have no choice but to lift up your hands from the wheel and stop trying to control things while you're in this so-called dreamtime. It is highly disturbing to the rational mind. Sometimes I feel like I accidentally saw past the fourth wall of real life because of how indiscreet and unlikely the "coincidences" were. I felt like a character in someone's novel. My point in saying this is... she isn't making this stuff up and she isn't necessarily exaggerating. Stuff like that really does happen. I'm an extremely scientific person, an athiest. But that shook me cause it seemed to defy pure chance. I wouldn't fight for this belief... But it made me much more open to the idea that what she is saying is true because I have experienced it myself.My most commonly spoken phrase during that time was "I don't know what's going on" because my rational mind frantically looked for explanations and could find nothing.
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  • LAURIE FIELDMAN
    January 1, 1970
    Ms. Beck writes clearly and with a hilarious, sassy tone. She certainly has credibility (3 Harvard degrees). I love how she lets the reader in to the Harvard viewpoint (unofficial motto: 'If you're not smart, just kill yourself.') How she courageously shifted perspective for what she was supposed to be doing with her Harvard degrees; very aware of how she was being perceived as a self-help writer by her Harvard colleagues: in their estimation, '...about six rungs lower...than a pole dancer.'I en Ms. Beck writes clearly and with a hilarious, sassy tone. She certainly has credibility (3 Harvard degrees). I love how she lets the reader in to the Harvard viewpoint (unofficial motto: 'If you're not smart, just kill yourself.') How she courageously shifted perspective for what she was supposed to be doing with her Harvard degrees; very aware of how she was being perceived as a self-help writer by her Harvard colleagues: in their estimation, '...about six rungs lower...than a pole dancer.'I enjoyed her own life experience examples and her client's, each taking note along the way of how stunningly surprising life's 'coincidences' are, which are now happening too often to be considered as such. But mostly, how the examples demonstrate the courage required to allow life to take you where you need to be. You do the work, WITH life. Life flows once you get out of your own way.Which really means: when you open yourself up to steering by the voice inside you (Starlight, God, a Higher Power, etc.) life opens up to amazing options and people. It becomes magical. When you let it.
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  • Joan
    January 1, 1970
    This book offers a toolbox of various techniques for looking at the world and more specifically at your own corner of it and how you want to move forward. I've had her other book about the North Star on my shelf for a while and have never got past the first chapter, perhaps only the intro, which is about Dante and some tough patches in his life. However, this book was a CD and I was on a road trip, so I persevered. The format precluded the homework/exercises part of the book, although I did stop This book offers a toolbox of various techniques for looking at the world and more specifically at your own corner of it and how you want to move forward. I've had her other book about the North Star on my shelf for a while and have never got past the first chapter, perhaps only the intro, which is about Dante and some tough patches in his life. However, this book was a CD and I was on a road trip, so I persevered. The format precluded the homework/exercises part of the book, although I did stop the CD and thought about things for a few minutes before proceeding. Some of the suggestions have a simplistic, this-will-cure-all feeling to them, but she is quick to introduce alternative language for some of her techniques that allow one to see the links between what she suggests and what one might find in more conventional self-help books.
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  • Carolyn
    January 1, 1970
    I listened to this audio book, read by Martha herself, as I did my morning walk through the park. Near the middle I also checked the actual book out of the library so I could access some of the exercises easier (trying to find the audio track on the iPod was a chore).I've just finished and I found it very inspiring and well-written (and well-read). I've done most of the exercises, or am still completing some - nothing ground-shaking has happened yet but I can believe it will, and that is a good I listened to this audio book, read by Martha herself, as I did my morning walk through the park. Near the middle I also checked the actual book out of the library so I could access some of the exercises easier (trying to find the audio track on the iPod was a chore).I've just finished and I found it very inspiring and well-written (and well-read). I've done most of the exercises, or am still completing some - nothing ground-shaking has happened yet but I can believe it will, and that is a good feeling. If you want a life coach but can't find the finances for one, pick up this book (or CDs). I think she's great!
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  • Shalla
    January 1, 1970
    i read this book years ago and is the first that comes to mind when someone i care about is sufferingthe concepts inside are easy to grasp and relate to without being complexly written or over the heads of the normal readeras with any self help style of book you have to figure out what works for you and to try to avoid rejecting an idea simply because you hurt when reading something...sometimes the pain is not suffering but validation that someone understands yougive it a read and see how it mov i read this book years ago and is the first that comes to mind when someone i care about is sufferingthe concepts inside are easy to grasp and relate to without being complexly written or over the heads of the normal readeras with any self help style of book you have to figure out what works for you and to try to avoid rejecting an idea simply because you hurt when reading something...sometimes the pain is not suffering but validation that someone understands yougive it a read and see how it moves you
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  • Allison
    January 1, 1970
    I liked the recommendations in this book so much that I bought a copy for myself (and returned the dog-eared one to the library . . . on time). Beck writes some really valuable life advice in here, tainted only by her choice of what I'll term "flowery" language. (The title alone offers a good idea of the sort of terminology readers will encounter.) I'd recommend this book to anyone who feels rudderless. It certainly can't hurt.
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