Bonjour Mon Famille,
Hello, one and all, it has been a hot minute since I did a book review. Yes, I know you are excited about this one. This is Book ?? – Ermm, I don’t even remember, but hey! I have been reading so yay!
Now before I go ahead with this review, this particular book review is very special because it is in collaboration with a publishing company (TCK Publishing). Yes, you heard me right, they saw the review I did on All your perfects by Colleen Hoover, and voila! here we are. I am sure you know I was over the moon when I got the email. Enough talking
“To build a sustainable book publishing company that helps as many authors as possible fulfill their dreams.”– TCK Publishing Mission Statement
LETS GET INTO THIS REVIEW;
Book Title; Reigniting the Spark.
Author; Dr. Bruce Chalmer
Read time; 1 month
Book type read; E-book
Rating Reason; So truth be told it’s been almost a year since I rated a book. If you read the Introduction to this review you would realize that I don’t even remember how many books I have read. Like you know, I have always either being biased about my rating or not sure how to go about rating them, that I sometimes think I have done badly at rating my other books. Anyway, I plan to give a very sincere rating for this book and others going forward (I mean; lesser sentiments and more of what I really think about the books). I am giving it a 4.0 because this book is amazing, it took me through a flow of content but the ending of this book is the only reason I am not giving it a 4.5/5.0 (I plan to explain better what I mean. Also, would any book I read get a 5.0? hmm! we would see). Oh just like every other book I have read, this is not the same. I would explain in the next section what I mean (I promise), but yeah this book was an amazing read. If you read this review and you would like a copy for yourself TCK publishing has made a copy available which I would be giving to a lucky winner on Instagram (@Datonelady), so go follow the blog on Instagram and the copy could be yours.
What I thought about the book; I would say this again, like I have said in other of my book reviews. A book review is not to tell the whole story of the book but to make you want to read the book (me just prefacing this so you are interested in getting the book, you could also be the lucky winner of the giveaway so yeah!). This book I would say was clearly divided into 4 parts by the author which for some reason now thinking about it, is like a few other books I have read and even reviewed; Part 1: Be kind; Part 2: Don’t Panic; Part 3: Have Faith; Part 4: (funny story the book labeled this as part 3, don’t know why there are 2 part 3’s but okay) Now Go and Learn. This 4 part book in one, is very different from other books I have written in the sense that, instead of it to be a book focused on the stories of people who have tried to rekindle the spark, the author used the stories (fictional) of couples to clearly drive home points of the 7-word phrase using these stories as case studies. This book started with an introduction to a 7-word phrase; “Be kind, don’t panic, and have faith” and the author clearly states that he had used this 7-word principle as a guide which I found very interesting. The author then went ahead to introduce us to our case studies(fictional couple stories) who had different issues of sparks in their marriages. which was a very background to have the 7-word phrase going into the content of the book. The phrases were then expatiated upon in very clear and simplified forms, which was my favorite thing about the book.
Like I said earlier, it is not a regular story but rather an instructional manual for both singles, in a relationship, out of a relationship, thinking of getting married, engaged, married, separated, or divorced individuals. One amazing thing, the author made sure to cut across all forms of relationships with the content of this book.
“Be kind, don’t panic, and have faith”– Reigniting the Spark.
Lessons learnt/Great points from the book;
- Life is more complex than what any school of thought or set of techniques can capture.
- The author is a psychologist and these two things influence and are the center of his profession – Faith and Science.
- On kindness and kinship;
- We couple for kindness (treating each other as one of a kind); If kindness is not the reason we pair up, it’s the reason we stay together if we have the choice.
- While falling in love is initially about attraction and passionate desire, the love that keeps you coupled over the long-term is about shared kinship.
- The fear of losing kinship is what keeps some people in otherwise bad relationships, to fear commitment is to fear establishing a kinship bond.
- People can’t trust that love based on kinship can be anything but painful and ultimately futile.
- On Goodwill;
- If you’re mine, I’ll assume goodwill. If you’re smiling and friendly, that’s easy, but I’ll also tend to assume goodwill even if you’re upset, in that I’ll ascribe your being upset to pain rather than hostility.
- In other words, how you interpret your partner’s behavior has a profound effect on your relationship.
“Express goodwill to your partners, practice kindness, and kinship in your relationships.”– Reigniting the Spark
- On Stability and intimacy;
- Fostering trust, and sexual fidelity are stability skills. The gift of stability is the sense that you can count on each other. Stability skills are all about lowering anxiety.
- The key to stability is Character, getting control of yourself, acting based on what is right.
- Stability alone is not enough, It is how people interact with the world to get what they need.
- Intimacy skills are about tolerating anxiety with emotional honesty.
- Kindness is what keeps couples together, but the two golden gifts of stability and intimacy are what make it possible to stay together. To retain that feeling of kinship, you need both the comfort of stability and the oneness of intimacy.
“Kindness needs both stability and intimacy.”-Reigniting the Spark
- On Panic;
- To be kind you need not panic.
- What we do when we panic, and not how we feel makes the difference. We mostly prepare for fight or flight when we panic. When you panic you can’t think things through.
- We need stability, to be able to lower or avoid anxiety so as not to threaten our relationship with excessive panicking.
- Tolerating anxiety and not lowering it is a prerequisite for intimacy. There is a tension between intimacy and stability skills
- Life without anxiety is meaningless.
- Don’t panic doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be able to panic but rather both individuals and couples need to keep the inevitable anxiety within limits that allow for both stability and intimacy.
“Honesty is key! Honesty with oneself and with your partner”– Reigniting the Spark
- On Trauma;
- If you are dealing with unhealed trauma denial won’t help you heal.
- What you care about, you get anxious about; and if you don’t get anxious about something you don’t really care about it. Anxiety is baked in the very concept of caring.
- The key to sustaining stability and intimacy is being able to get hold of oneself: that is, to be able to calm yourself down when you can and tolerate anxiety for the sake of intimacy without dissolving into panic
- When part of your brain goes offline thanks to a reminder of unhealed trauma, it is nearly impossible you get hold of yourself. You are entitled to react, but not overreact.
- Feeling entitled to respond to your partner’s hostility with your own hostility would likely only escalate the situation because hostility will simply justify that of your partner.
- On character, guilt, and shame;
- Getting a hold of your self directs your moral compass even when it’s difficult. It allows you to act with integrity and respect even when faced with uncertainty. Good character means that your guiding principles aren’t based on how your behavior might be judged by others but on right and wrong.
- Without shame, there would be no cultural norms and without guilt, we would have no morality.
“Science tells us what reality is, and faith tells us what reality means“Rabbi Jonathan (2011)
- On Having Faith;
- Faith is when you accept that reality is right. Reality is right In this sense; it’s orderly and comprehensible and it’s also fundamentally good. Faith shapes how you believe, experience, and act. It is a check on arrogance in that person of faith recognize that they don’t have God’s view of the universe. Another indicator of faith is realizing that the pain is helping you grow. Reality is meaningful, especially when it’s difficult. It’s faith that allows us to tolerate anxiety in order to experience intimacy
- On fundamentalism; It claims certainty.
- You need Faith in your own validity as a person
- The kind of faith you need is faith in your ability to handle whatever happens. Also, known as resilience.
- The kind of faith you need is faith in the big picture, in the fundamental rightness of reality as a whole, however painful or incomprehensible it can be at times.
What I didn’t like about the book; I actually didn’t like how the book ended, the author traced it back to the couple’s stories- I mean the book built on so many fundamental points that tracking it back to the initial stories – which I believe some people would find interesting but for me, it felt like a drop in the energy of the book – like I said the couple stories in the book was fictionally based off of cases the author had dealt with in his practice (OKAY! that was a mouthful). I am noticing a trend in my book reviews, I tend to envision how I expect a book I read to end and end up not liking how it actually ends – A classic example of a personal problem!
The book was amazing none the less!
Recommendation; That been said, I recommend every individual both single, searching, in love, in a relationship, married, or divorced to ensure to read this book as it clearly addressed different groups of people and gave great ideas and tips that are useful to everyone in helping reignite the spark.
A big thank to TCK Publishing for collaborating with me on this review.