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Sat, Dec

"Mindfire: Big Ideas for Curious Minds" by Scott Berkun. 195 pages. Published by Berkun Media, LLC (October 2011).

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Although Mindfire is a relatively short book, coming in at less than 200 pages, it packs a powerful punch. It is broken down into 3 parts: Gasoline, Sparks, and Fire. Each section features essays with titles such as "How to be a free thinker" and "Book Smarts vs. Street Smarts." Berkun's writing covers a wide range of philosophical topics that are relevant in today's difficult times. His unique vision gives the reader a different perspective on how to look at various opportunities, challenges and personal goals.

Berkun previously worked at Microsoft up until 2003. He is now a public speaker, author of several books, and maintains the website www.scottberkun.com. His writing style is direct and to the point, managing to not come across as arrogant, preaching, or pretending to have all the answers. Many of the topics he writes about are situations a person encounters on an everyday basis.

One of my favorite essays in his newest book is called "How to make a difference." Berkun writes, "We all have limits. We can't change things as much as we'd like. But we can all do small things that make more of a difference than we realize." This essay reminded me of the Occupy movements and also the Arab Spring. One person felt the need to mobilize, and then another person followed suit. People began communicating and the world soon took notice.

As the new year gets underway, make it a point to pick up Mindfire and check out Berkun's website. His work will inspire you to try to make a positive difference in the world. At the very least his writing will inspire you to get up off the couch and begin seeing things differently.