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The Book to Beat This Year

On Fire: The 7 Choices to Ignite a Radically Inspired Life - John O'Leary

I know it's early yet, but this will be the book to beat in 2018 for me. Or at least the standard for 5-star books this year.


John O'Leary accidentally set himself on fire when he was 9 years old. He was burned on 100% of his body. He was not expected to survive... yet he did.


This was inspirational, it was moving and the lessons that he was able to draw from his experience were powerful. His humility is palpable. He cites numerous examples of people who encouraged him and helped him along the way: his family -  the older brother and two little sisters who put the fire out and held him while he waited for help; the janitor who kept his room clean so he wouldn't have infections; the doctor who, himself a previous burn victim, took time out to give him the words to keep fighting.


To say I cried throughout this book is an understatement, yet O'Leary refuses to allow you to feel sorry for him. Each experience cited is attached to a powerful lesson such as acceptance and growth through pain. (This. The growth through pain section had me bawling. If you read it you will understand why. I wanted to hug his physical therapists). He makes each lesson relatable even though his experience was dramatic, pointing out we all have points in our lives where we have to choose whether or not to change or give up.


I could go on and on. 


Just read it. I will be buying this for people and saying just that. Just read it. 


It will change you.