Wednesday Book Review: The 5 Elements of Effective Thinking

The 5 Elements of Effective Thinking

By Edward B, Burger and Michael Starbird

GoodReads.com BookMooch.com

My Rating: 3.8/5

Trigger Warnings: None

This book was given to me as a gift from my Grandmother, with the hope that I would find some wisdom in it. She is also a huge book fan, and knowing how hard I’ve been working on getting my mental health together, she thought this may be a good book for me. Be warned, this is not your average “self-help” book. The 5 Elements of Effective Thinking is a philosophical approach to learning and success. It’s not really about mental health. However, the 5 principles that they teach in this book could easily be used in therapy, school, work, relationships, and anything else to improve your life.


In this book, Burger and Starbird, two college professors, explain precisely how geniuses like Albert Einstein, Issac Newton, and Bill Gates came up with their life-changing ideas. It’s not because they were born gifted, or they were given a leg up, they got there by merely thinking more effectively.


Through deep understanding, failure, questioning, reviewing, changing, and pure stubbornness, they created “mind-boggling” ideas. These ways of thinking are sometimes shunned in our society, making it hard for us to reach out and grab our true potential. Luckily, with a few simple changes in our lives, we can unlock the future we are looking for.


Now, this is not going to be a “do as I say and you will make a million dollars” kind of book. They do not expect you to follow this shiny gold road that they have painted for you. They are to teach you ways to learn from your own mistakes and encourage you to be your own teacher.


The only real issue I have with this book is that it’s a slightly dull read. It is written like a lecture, and some of the examples used are a little dry. While there are bits of humor and a ton of fascinating information, but this book was not written for the ADHD mind. The authors are here to educate, not motivate, and uplift. They do their job well, and I really did enjoy the book, but I did space out a few times while reading it.


I will say I have yet to read anything like it. Their approach to life long learning is something I was needing to read this week, and I’m so glad Nana gave me this book. If you get the chance, I highly recommend giving this a read and trying out the exercises inside. It just may help you come up with the next world-changing idea.

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