Can I already interrupt myself to say how much I loved this book? So much love for it that it was worth sharing first off the bat!
Jordan B. Peterson. 12 Rules For Life An Antidote To Chaos with Foreword by Normal Doidge.
353 pages in length with 14 more pages for the concluding Coda, and a full front and back for the Acknowledgments. ALSO! Do not forget the 220 Endnotes that were noted throughout the entire book for evidence and backup. (And the 19 pages of Index at the very end.) From the first page to the last page, the book is 409 pages long, including the Coda, Endnotes, and Index. To say this book was well researched and thought out through it’s entirety is an understatement.
I do not have the right words to describe this book. It is simply a book you need to read. It’s beautiful but important. There are so many people I personally know that need to read and understand this book.
There are quite a few parts where someone may feel challenged as they read it. Words that are big or you may have never heard of before. If you come across those words, do not be afraid. I usually have my phone right next to me with Google open and ready for me to search new words. One thing you learn in this book is to adapt to your new challenges because that’s part of what life is about. You need to learn through your struggle if you are to grow as a Being. What are the 12 Rules For Life you ask? I’ll list them by title, but to understand the meaning of each one, you will have to read the book.
- Stand up straight with your shoulders back.
- Treat yourself like someone you are responsible for helping.
- Make friends with people who want the best for you.
- Compare yourself to who you were yesterday, not to who someone else is today.
- Do not let your children do anything that makes you dislike them.
- Set your house in perfect order before you criticize the world.
- Pursue what is meaningful (not what is expedient.)
- Tell the truth–or, at least, don’t lie.
- Assume that the person you are listening to might know something you don’t.
- Be precise in your speech.
- Do not bother children when they are skateboarding.
- Pet a cat when you encounter one on the street.
I loved the rules, even though I’m not a lover of rules. These however, seemed to fit just right into what Rules I’d accept into my life or community. If I chose one or two favorites they would be rule number eight and rule number nine. I do want to warn of two things just to be clear (and safe!) before you run out, buy the book, and then get mad at me!
First warning: it has religious material and commentary. I’m not an overly religious person. I found his references tasteful. The references didn’t bother me as I was reading the book. There was one chapter where I felt, less than excited to read it, to remaistayte. After that one point though, the rest of the religious references were not so lengthy or hard to care about. They fit with his stories, examples, and rules.
Second Warning: The last chapter mentions a cat. He also describes his family dog the beginning of this chapter. The cat is important for his reference, but he wants to make clear that he loves dogs as well cats. The point in the chapter is not to love and be obsessed with one versus the other. To understand his clear meaning, you definitely need to read it. I am a dog lover. I have found very few cats in this world that I adore. But I’d never hate a cat either.
The best way to describe this book…well, that’s very hard for me. It’s this quote found on the back of the book:
“Jordan Peterson’s 12 Rules For Life hits home–from identifying the deeply engrained hierarchical ladder that motivates our decision making to asking indispensable and sometimes politically unpopular questions about your life and suggesting ways to better it. If that’s not enough, its first twenty pages gives a summary of evolutionary psychology that’s breathtaking.”
-Howard Bloom, author of The Lucifer Principle.
I probably could keep writing all night and into the following weeks about how amazing this book is. I could keep writing about every way it opened my eyes. I could also admit that I’m afraid some lessons didn’t sink in and I’m afraid the knowledge contained in this book will not be fully harvested yet. Ironically though, that is one of the lessons in the book. You will go through things and you have to decide what is to learn from it. It’s hard to understand what we are supposed to learn from each specific part of our lives. No one ever said life was easy though. You don’t have to decide what specifically you learn, you just need to be open to learning it and through time all of your lessons will make more sense.
The book was not hard to read but it was a challenge at the same time. I learned words I have never heard of before. I spent a lot of time on Google trying to learn more, so I could better understand what was in my hands. We must challenge ourselves every single day, most people already know that. How often are we living it though?
If you’d like to learn more or even buy a copy for yourself check out:
(P.S. Happy Early birthday Dr. Jordan B. Peterson- June 12th)
**Also, I would like to thank my sister and her husband for allowing me to borrow this book. They were kind enough to let me jump in front of them and read it first before they even had read their own copy of this book. Thank you, sincerely!**