Customer Reviews for

The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything

Average Rating 4
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

13 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

TREMENDOUSLY INSPIRING WAS "THE ELEMENT" ! ! !

I heard Dr. Ken Robinson discussing his book "The Element" on Huckabee, and immediately ordered it at B&N online. I awaited it anxiously and was very pleased that it arrived promptly! My anticipation was well founded! Dr. Robinson's book was a GREAT read!

I am a...
I heard Dr. Ken Robinson discussing his book "The Element" on Huckabee, and immediately ordered it at B&N online. I awaited it anxiously and was very pleased that it arrived promptly! My anticipation was well founded! Dr. Robinson's book was a GREAT read!

I am at a point in my life, having worked in the same field for over 25 years, that I have begun entertaining the idea of pursuing another line of work along some of my interests. "The Element" gave me a fresh and insightful perspective into what is likely to provide me with the greatest level of satisfaction and feeling of achievement.

Dr. Robinson did an artful job of weaving the stories of real people, many of them celebrities or people of notoriety, into his thematic presentation. He adeptly utilized inspiring true life accounts of people who have found "the element" to illustrate his persuasive arguments in each chapter. He paints a very convincing picture of how people are happiest in life when their abilities or competencies intersect their passions or most gratifying pursuits. In short, he guides the reader through "I get it!"... "I love it!"... "I want it!"... "Where is it?!" Fortunately, or tragically (I'm still mulling this over!), about the time I was ready to charge out and begin a new career, Robinson allowed for the fact that a person can still feel very fulfilled through pursuing their passion as a hobby or outside interest and not just through making it their life's work.

Reading "The Element" was undoubtably time well spent! I seriously hated putting it down and, when I had finished it, thought that it ended almost too soon. However, Dr. Robinson did a masterful job of making his point, and providing genuine inspiration, in an appropriate amount of time. The length is perfect... long enough to be convincing... brief enough to leave you wanting more. Nice job. Dr. Robinson is certainly in "the element". Pick up a copy soon and BUY it, don't borrow it, as you'll want to have it on your bookshelf for periodic review!

posted by TerBenn on March 23, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

5 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

Finding my Element...or Telling me about others who had?

SO. I picked up this book originally because I heard a speech by the author about the book. The speech was wonderful! However, the book was just repeating over and over ALL these success stories about people who weren't successful in school, but made it big time after t...
SO. I picked up this book originally because I heard a speech by the author about the book. The speech was wonderful! However, the book was just repeating over and over ALL these success stories about people who weren't successful in school, but made it big time after they dropped out or moved on or whatever. I thought this book was going to inspire me to GO find my element...nope. It inspired me to want to hurt allll the people in the book who were living their dreams when they didn't work hard in school. I'm working my butt off in school, and my element is sitting on a shelf collecting dust because everyone seems to get in my way. This book did not help me to feel better about not having my element, but it helped me feel depressed and angry toward our school system, most of which I knew about the No Child Left Behind...but overall, not what I was expecting. A huge disappointment.

posted by bookwormCH on February 13, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 14, 2010

    Vignettes with vague guidance

    The premise that people all should do their element is pretty common knowledge. The vignettes were interesting, but for me not much different that a gathering of profiles that I have read in various magazines.

    I guess I was expecting a more "how to find your element" rather than just examples of people in their element.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 22, 2013

    Well worth the read.

    After hearing a speech by Sir Ken Robinson I purchased this book. It is worth the read. He expounds on his work in creativity. The latter half of his book seems to veer off; however, it is a book I would recommend. I especially would recommend it to parents of young children.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 21, 2012

    fadepaw

    "when can i star training, smokeheart? im super excited" *sneakes up on leaf silently and pounces on it*

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 11, 2011

    Completely Inspiring, but a One Time Read

    After watching Ken Robinson's TED video in my senior English class I knew I had to read The Element. Ken Robinson's strong speech about the lack of creativity in the U.S. school systems was inspiring, and was very relatable. After reading the book I was surprisingly disappointed. Many of the people featured in Robinson's book turned out to be musicians or noble peace prizewinners, not just basic everyday people who did something great in medicine or founded a National Park. I was also disappointed with the repetition throughout the entire book, leaving you feeling overwhelmed and frozen in time. I would have liked to see the chapters build off each other rather than bounce from topic to topic and not ever pinpointing a solid idea.
    The Element wasn't just filled with stories of famous people and run on topics. It opened doors to new ideas that never crossed my mind. While reading The Element you might want to jot ideas down because the topics touched on leave you thinking; for example how the IQ test was formed and used throughout history and how the ACT has the same basic structure but used for different purposes. Some of the other topics The Element presents you with just reinforce things we already do on an everyday basis, like associating ourselves with people with similar interests. Robinson refers to this as finding your tribe, and personally I think it plays a large part in everyday life.
    I rated The Element a 3.0 out of 5.0 stars because it had its ups and downs. Some chapters kept you on your toes while others slowly put you to sleep. I think The Element overall has great potential in getting you inspired and keeping dreams alive, but I think most would agree it's a one time read.

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  • Posted January 11, 2011

    Robinson brings ideas to light, but once through is enough.

    After watching Ken Robinson's TED video in my senior English class I knew I had to read The Element. Ken Robinson's strong speech about the lack of creativity in the U.S. school systems was inspiring, and was very relatable. After reading the book I was surprisingly disappointed.
    Many of the people featured in Robinson's book turned out to be musicians or Noble Peace prizewinners, not just basic everyday people who did something great in medicine or founded a National Park. I was also disappointed with the repetition throughout the entire book, leaving you feeling overwhelmed and frozen in time. I would have like to see the chapters build off each other rather than bounce from topic to topic and not ever pinpointing a solid idea.
    The Element wasn't just filled with storied of famous people and run-on topics. It opened doors to new ideas that never crossed my mind. While reading The Element you might want to jot ideas down because the topics touched on leave you thinking; for example, how the IQ test was formed and used throughout history and how the ACT has the same basic structure but used for different purposes. Some of the other topics The Element present you with just reinforce things we already do on an everyday basis, like associating ourselves with people with similar interests. Robinson refers to this as finding your tribe, and personally I think it plays a large part in everyday life.
    I rated The Element a 3.0 out of 5.0 stars because it had its ups and downs. Some chapters kept you on your toes while others slowly put you to sleep. I think The Element overall has great potential in getting you inspired and keeping dreams alive, but I think most would agree it's a one-time read.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 24, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    I prefer Sugar's "The Silent Crisis Destroying America's Brightest Minds"

    Sugar's 'The Silent Crisis Destroying America's Brightest Minds" is a book that is all about educational reality, the facts on the ground, not vacuous educational theories.

    Sugar pioneered the SMARTGRADES school notebooks that contain the new learning technology, ACANDY Processing Tools, that empower students for academic success. She transformed my kids into Grade A students, soI speak from experience, not hypothetical theory. Its not all about teaching, its all about learning.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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