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Book Review – Five Secrets You Must Discover Before You Die

Book Review – Five Secrets You Must Learn Before You Die
… by John Izzo

I have mentioned John Izzo several times in various blog entries, and I have also referred to this book in previous blog entries.

The “Five Secrets” was written after John had spent time interviewing 235 people, ranging in age from 60 to 105. He chose these people because he thought that they had a good insight into what really matters, having led meaningful lives thus far.

The book condenses the life learnings of these 235 “wise” people into Five Secrets, that are really guiding principles to live by … if you too want a fulfilling life.

Secret #1. Be True to Yourself.

We all have our own moral compass and our beliefs, yet some people lose sight of what is really important to them and compromise those values. They make life choices to achieve material things, they make life choices because of what other people think they should do … the message here is to really understand what is import to YOU, and chart your own course!

Secret #2. Leave No Regrets

When I referenced John’s book previously, the bog entry was titled What Will You Regret at the End of Your Career? Obviously this sentiment does not just apply to work, it applies to every facet of your life. You certainly don’t want to be uttering the words “I wish I had …” at the end of your life.

Secret #3. Become Love.

I am a little uncomfortable with how that is expressed, but the sentiment is good. Love is really what matters, so you need to tell people what you feel about them … and you need to do it now, a lot and keep doing it. We take people for granted. We let the little things get in the way. We don’t spend enough time with the people we love.

Secret #4. Live the Moment.

Life goes by really fast, and before you know it you are old. That seems like such a cliché, but it is so true! We need to enjoy life, we need to be good to ourselves, we need to forgive ourselves and not dwell on failures or weaknesses, we need to focus on our own life and not compare ourselves to others. These people tell us that happiness is not something you can find anywhere but inside ourselves.

Secret #5. Give More that You Take!

Find something that matters to you, get involved in a cause, chase a dream or invest time and energy in something important to you. If you are unhappy then do something for someone else … it feels good!

One of the sentiments expressed in the book is that if you can discover the 5 Secrets in your life, then you won’t be afraid of death! That’s a big statement.

One of my favorite sayings comes from James Dean, a man who dies young but achieved some fame in his short acting career. “Dream as if you’ll live forever. Live as if you’ll die today”. Maybe he knew something about the 5 Secrets!

The following link is to a series of pictures illustrating John’s book.

Picture sequence with the 5 Secrets. 

Kevin Dee is CEO of Eagle (a Professional Staffing Company)
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