“Be by Design: How I Be Is Up to Me” by Christine McKee is a good addition to anyone’s self improvement library. As a registered psychologist, this book is a bit more “clinical” than some of the self-help books out there, and that’s a good thing. There is some substance to this book and not just some motivational cheer leading.
If you have read a lot of books in the genre, a lot of the message in this book will be familiar. But that does not mean you should dismiss it. Like Zig Ziglar used to say about motivation wearing off, so does a bath, so he recommended both daily. This is an easy book to work into your reading for some motivation and some research behind the strategies and why they work.
The book is divided into four parts. The first, Awareness, contains four chapters on the topics of the brain, your manual of life, unhealthy and healthy response options when feeling negative emotion and stress, and accountability versus non-accountability. Examples and “homework” or “assignments” are presented throughout the book.
The second part, or phase, is focus. The four chapters in this second are intention model, personal power, mood control, and choosing the now. I really like the “now” chapter and the concept of each day is a series of once in a lifetime events. This is harder than it seems, but this book should inspire people to give it a try and see the difference it makes.
Maximizing Potential is the third part and relationships and communications are covered. The final part, choices, also has only two chapters and they are on your mental diet and the power of gratitude. Again, there are a number of books that cover similar lessons, but McKee does a good job of presenting them here and I enjoyed the book. I wasn’t that into her use of the capital “B” in the slogan or title, and I’m glad it wasn’t used that much after the very beginning.
I like what the author is trying to do with this book and agree that it is up to each individual to design the life they want and to make each and every day the most amazing you can. I think if you take the lessons of this book to heart, and actually follow through with them, you will undoubtedly live a more fulfilled life and will be on track to life the life that you design.