Grow a Pair: How to Stop Being a Victim and Take Back Your Life, Your Business, and Your Sanity

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The straight-talking, New York Times bestselling author and Pitbull of Personal Development® is back with a pithy and prescriptive guide to success. 
A five-time bestselling author and one of the country’s leading business speakers, Larry has made a reputation for being the first to challenge the positive-attraction gurus and the law-of-attraction bozos with his commonsense approach to success. Larry doesn’t sugar-coat, ...

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Grow a Pair: How to Stop Being a Victim and Take Back Your Life, Your Business, and Your Sanity

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The straight-talking, New York Times bestselling author and Pitbull of Personal Development® is back with a pithy and prescriptive guide to success. 
A five-time bestselling author and one of the country’s leading business speakers, Larry has made a reputation for being the first to challenge the positive-attraction gurus and the law-of-attraction bozos with his commonsense approach to success. Larry doesn’t sugar-coat, and he isn’t afraid to make people uncomfortable, because he wants us to stop making excuses, and start getting results.
In the New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller Grow a Pair, Larry takes on entitlement culture, the self-help movement, political correctness, and more.  We’ve all heard the phrase “grow a pair,” but Larry’s advice isn’t about anatomy—it’s about attitude. To get the success we want, we need to reject victimhood in favor of being assertive and finally taking some responsibility.
With prescriptive advice on goal achieving, career, personal finance, and more, Grow a Pair will give the readers the kick in the pants they need.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"I like the way Larry Winget practices tough love. He doesn't tell you what you want to hear so you'll feel warm and fuzzy; he tells you what you need to hear so you'll feel uncomfortable and improve your life. Do yourself a favor and read this book."—Mark Sanborn, bestselling author of The Fred Factor and You Don't Need a Title to Be a Leader

"There's only one person in the world who could write this book.  And lucky for you - he did. I dare you to read it.  You may love it.  You might hate it.  But read it."
—Randy Gage, author of the New York Times bestseller Risky is the New Safe
"It has never been more important for you to stand up for yourself and your rights.  In Grow A Pair, Larry explains practical strategies for protecting yourself, your family and our country!"  
—Grant Cardone, TV's TurnAround King
"Larry Winget is the perfect balance of you 'get over yourself' and 'take responsibility.'  You don't have an ounce of breathing space to be less than, blame, or wait for success.  This is why no one has the ability to get you fast results in your life or business like Larry.  Few books can kick your butt so far so fast.”
 —Suzanne Evans, award winning entrepreneur and life coach at Be The Change

“Winget emboldens readers to blaze a path through life with a strong sense of purpose, self-possession, and the ability to learn from criticism and failure.” –Publishers Weekly

"A fast-read with powerful messages and easy concepts."

"Read [Winget’s] gripping advice, and you won’t roll over and play dead ever again."

United Features Syndicate

 "An in-your-face, take-no-prisoners book for those who know they need a little bit of the plain truth…and, especially for those who don’t. It’s a book that I needed to read…and, I’ll bet that you do, too."

“Consider me a raving fan.”

Publishers Weekly
The self-proclaimed “Pitbull of Personal Development” bares his Libertarian teeth to take a bite out of life in this unusual self-help tome. Winget (Your Kids Are Your Own Fault) rails against the American culture of entitlement and encourages readers to make life-changes based on “personal responsibility, accountability, confidence, and integrity.” In other words, “grow a pair.” His main beef is that society has been “castrated by... new age, smiley face, psychobabble,” resulting in a spineless population that feels it is “owed healthcare benefits” and is overly concerned with political correctness. Winget emboldens readers to blaze a path through life with a strong sense of purpose, self-possession, and the ability to learn from criticism and failure. To that end, he explains how to “grow a pair with your money,” in business, at home, and in society, while relating lessons from his own experiences—from working his way out of the recession to handling conflict with his wife and putting an obnoxious airplane passenger in his place. Winget’s bite is commensurate with his bark, and, though pit bulls used to be known as “Nanny Dogs,” this one seems to be only looking out for himself. Illus. Agent: Jay Mandel, WME Entertainment. (Sept. 16)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781592408559
  • Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 8/5/2014
  • Pages: 176
  • Sales rank: 276,270
  • Product dimensions: 7.90 (w) x 5.30 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Larry Winget is the author of New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestsellers including Your Kids Are Your Own FaultPeople Are Idiots and I Can Prove It!You’re Broke Because You Want to BeIt’s Called Work for a Reason!, and Shut Up, Stop Whining, and Get a Life. Known to his fans as The Pitbull of Personal Development®, he is one of the country's leading business speakers and a member of the International Speaker Hall of Fame. He has over twenty years of experience speaking to nearly 400 of the Fortune 500, sharing his insights and principles in the areas of success, leadership, customer service, sales, and personal finance. Larry coached families in financial crisis on A&E's reality series Big Spender and he is a featured expert on many television shows including Fox News, CNBC, and others.

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Read an Excerpt


Grow a pair. You’ve heard that phrase before and chances are you know exactly what it means. However, in case you live under a rock and the phrase and its meaning have somehow escaped you, here is the definition according to the Urban Dictionary: “Telling someone they don’t have the balls to do something they know they should be doing.” And the Urban Dictionary’s thesaurus gives us these substitutions for “grow a pair”: to man up, cowboy up, quit being a pussy, and get the sand out of your vajayjay.

A pair obviously means balls. But don’t be sophomoric and turn this into some grade school sexual thing. I’m not talking about testicles or physical balls; I’m talking about mental balls. And by the way, if you guys think you are the only ones with balls, you are wrong. Growing a pair has nothing to do with masculine versus feminine. I can show you lots of men who have balls, yet have no balls. I can also show you lots of women who have a bigger pair than most men can ever hope to have. So here, in the first few hundred words of this little book, get past the physical and the sexual and get your giggles out of the way, and then let’s talk about what growing a pair really means.

I have written five bestsellers, so you would think I would have pretty much covered this problem by now in my other books, wouldn’t you? You would think that

a book entitled Shut Up, Stop Whining, and Get a Life would have covered this. Or maybe People Are Idiots and I Can Prove It! Wouldn’t that one cover this topic? Those books, along with my others—It’s Called Work for a Reason!; You’re Broke Because You Want to Be; No Time for Tact; and Your Kids Are Your Own Fault—are tactical books. Great books, by the way, but they don’t deal with this issue. Those books each lay out a specific problem, then provide the reader with simple, straightforward tactics that can be used to deal with and solve the problem. This problem isn’t that easy. This problem isn’t as tactical. Yes, there are specific tactics you can implement and take action on to grow a pair and I’m going to give them to you in just a few pages. But the tactics alone aren’t enough to really grow a pair.This problem is about creating an entirely new mind-set.It’s about a new way of thinking. It’s about a new way of living. In other words, growing a pair has nothing to do with what’s between your legs and everything to do with what’s between your ears.

Growing a pair is a state of mind, an attitude, and a way of thinking. It’s about giving up being a victim and taking control of your life at every level. It is the willingness to do the right thing even when everyone else is doing the wrong thing. It has its roots in personal responsibility, accountability, confidence, and integrity. It’s about establishing a standard by which you will live your life. It’s about drawing lines in the sand. It’s about knowing yourself, knowing your values,and becoming uncompromising in your willingness to do whatever it takes to stand up for them.

After reading that last paragraph, don’t you agree that our society is in desperate need of developing that mind-set? Don’t you believe that most folks are in need of a pair?

The Problem

We have become a society of weenies. I hate admitting that, but since I am not a weenie, I will.For the most part, people are weak, sniveling, whining, backstabbing, gossiping, spineless weenies and let other people walk all over them.

People deliver bad service and we take it without ever saying anything about it. We allow friends to say hurtful things to us, without saying a word in our own defense. We let our government—people we elect and whose salaries we pay—take advantage of us, instead of fighting back by voting them out. We sit in theaters and let people text, take phone calls, and talk loudly to each other like they are sitting in their own living rooms, and most of us never bother to speak up and tell them to shut the hell up. We watch people throw their trash in the street or parking lot and never say a word to them.

Businesses now seem to be run by bad employees with poor work habits and lousy attitudes because their manager doesn’t have the guts to discipline them or fire their lazy butts. And in many cases, HR departments won’t let management do their job of actually managing their employees for fear of a lawsuit from some nitwit who might sue because their fragile feelings got hurt when they were told to get back to work. It’s insane!

The popular network television show What Would You Do? puts people in the dilemma of “should I intervene?” when they see people being robbed, or property being vandalized, or other scandalous behavior. Sadly, most people don’t speak up even when witnessing a crime because they just can’t be bothered, don’t want to make waves, or because they are afraid.

All of this has to stop. People need to speak up, step up, and behave boldly! We need to update and personalize the great line from Virgil’s Aeneid, “Audentes fortuna juvat!”—“Fortune favors the bold!”

Standing up for yourself is no longer a part of what we teach people. Instead, we teach people to go along and get along. We encourage passiveness in our responses to bullies, to stupidity, and to corruption. We tolerate poor performance, bad service, inappropriate behavior, and other unacceptable practices. We have made being nice and being liked more important than being respected. Assertiveness is frowned upon. Having a strong opinion is no longer the way to go because you are considered an extremist; straddling the fence is much more popular.

Yet when any of this lousy behavior happens and actually affects our lives, people whine that they are being taken advantage of. Of course they are! People are allowing this poor behavior. They are allowing themselves to be run over and can’t seem to figure out how it is happening to them. You’re standing in the middle of the road—move!

All of this must stop. We all need to grow a pair, act with assertiveness, speak up for ourselves, take a stand, and refuse to accept less than the best from others or from ourselves.


Imagine a society where people do the right thing every time. A world where every person is honest and has integrity and keeps their word. Where we show up on time. Where we respect others, their time, their property, their opinion. Picture a world where people are responsible and hold others accountable.

Imagine businesses where employees do their job because it is the right thing to do. Where we are more interested in doing a good job than seeing how much work we can get out of without being caught. Where we treat customers well and provide amazing service because we understand that the customer has the money that keeps us paid and our company in business. A world where employers treat their employees with dignity and respect and where employees are grateful for their jobs and are committed to excellence. Where both groups create a team committed to serving customers.

Imagine a government where politicians tell the truth and deliver on their promises. Where they run honest campaigns with no mudslinging. Where they refuse to compromise their beliefs or pander to special interest groups in order to get more funding for their campaigns and for votes. Where we once again look up to our elected officials as people we can believe in, who want to serve their constituents and not spend all of their time making decisions just so they can be reelected.

Imagine a world where parents are less concerned with being their kid’s friend, and more concerned with raising responsible, productive adults, which means stepping up to the plate and making the tough, unpopular parenting decisions. Where parents set good examples for their kids by spending their money on things that matter and teaching their kids about money. Where parents read, exercise, eat right, play with their kids, and openly communicate about relationships, sex, bullying, and the sensitive topics that in reality they too often avoid.

Is all of this too much to ask? Probably. Will all of it happen? Definitely not. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try. That doesn’t mean that we should become complacent and just maintain the status quo because creating this world takes too much effort.

How do we create a world like the one I just described? We need every person to do his part. Remember: You can’t change the world, but you can change your world. And if enough people commit to changing their world and teaching their kids what it takes to live this kind of life, then the world will be a different place.

This is a biggie (I like to give warnings if I have a biggie so you won’t miss it!):


That’s right—work on you before you concern yourself with other folks. Remember that people change when they want to and not when you want them to, so instead of worrying yourself with fixing everyone else,focus on fixing yourself. When you think you’ve mastered a bit of this stuff, then move on to your kids and teach them. Then communicate with the people you come in contact with every day to educate them on your new view. Most importantly, live like you have a pair and set a good example so it will rub off on those around you!

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 6 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 22, 2013

    Funny and pointed.

    A friend of mine recommended this book to me. Larry Winget is funny and honest. I'm sure people read his books and say, oh, I knew that. But, as Larry points out, you have to do more than just know. He is practical in his approach, down to earth, and dead-on. I recommend this book to people who sometimes, or as a habit, sit and do nothing, instead of forging ahead.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 27, 2013

    The world needs to read this book!

    The world needs to read this book!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 23, 2014

    Good read if you need a tough voice to get you to do the right t

    Good read if you need a tough voice to get you to do the right things for yourself. It doesn't hurt to be reminded once in a while, it's even better if you get something out of it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 22, 2013

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    Posted September 20, 2013

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 27, 2013

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