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One Big Thing: Discovering What You Were Born to Do

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Overview

Named by Washingon Post as one of the top five business books for 2012.

Stop being average at so many things, and become extraordinary at One Big Thing.

What were you born to accomplish with your life? One Big Thing will help you discover what you were born to do and allow it to revolutionize your business, your ministry, and your life. In today’s distracted, digital culture, it’s harder than ever to identify your calling, get your voice heard,...

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Overview

Named by Washingon Post as one of the top five business books for 2012.

Stop being average at so many things, and become extraordinary at One Big Thing.

What were you born to accomplish with your life? One Big Thing will help you discover what you were born to do and allow it to revolutionize your business, your ministry, and your life. In today’s distracted, digital culture, it’s harder than ever to identify your calling, get your voice heard, and achieve your dreams. To stand out and communicate your ideas and message, you need to cut through the clutter and get noticed. Making that happen means focusing on the one thing that drives you, inspires your passion, and separates you from the pack. If you’ve ever felt pulled in different directions or wondered what to do with your varied talents and interests, Phil Cooke will teach you the secrets of living a life-on-purpose that rises above the noise and leaves a lasting mark on the world.

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    May11_4/OneBigThing_PhilCooke_9781595554840_reduced_BB_ea3f0ac6d58b3e8b24be6e5467f844d5dad108fe  

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Film and TV producer Phil Cooke reads his latest personal development book at a pace that sounds overwhelming at first but that ultimately settles into a good fit for his high-energy message. His speaking style has a confident tone that is convincingly urgent. Once the inspirational beginning of the audio runs its course, Cooke offers an array of accessible ideas on how to identify a single life direction that can express what invigorates us, what we enjoy doing most. A communication expert with Christian roots, Cooke aims this advice squarely at listeners with artistic, performance, or altruistic ambitions—people who often need help not just with narrowing their focus but also with balancing their lives and expressing their talents in ways that will be noticed by their target audience or customer base." 
T.W. © AudioFile Portland, Maine
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781595554840
  • Publisher: Nelson, Thomas, Inc.
  • Publication date: 7/17/2012
  • Series: maint to frontlist
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 451,288
  • Product dimensions: 5.60 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Phil Cooke, a writer, speaker, and filmmaker, is changing the way business, church, and nonprofit leaders influence and engage the culture. Christianity Today calls him a “media guru.” His media company, Cooke Pictures, advises many of the largest and most effective churches and nonprofit organizations in the world, and his books and blog (at philcooke.com) are changing the way they tell their story.

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Read an Excerpt

ONE BIG THING

Discovering What You Were Born to Do
By PHIL COOKE

Thomas Nelson

Copyright © 2012 Philip Howard Cooke
All right reserved.

ISBN: 978-1-59555-485-7


Chapter One

WHO'S PAINTING THE PORTRAIT OF YOUR LIFE?

The Power of Intentional Living

Every painter paints himself. —Còsimo de' Medici, Florentine statesman

I was going to have cosmetic surgery until I noticed that the doctor's office was full of portraits by Picasso. —Rita Rudner, comedian

A great life doesn't happen by accident. My wife, Kathleen, and I are regular visitors to the Huntington Library, Gardens, and Art Collection in Pasadena, California. Founded by Henry and Arabella Huntington, it is housed in the large Beaux Arts mansion (designed by architect Myron Hunt) they built shortly after the turn of the twentieth century; the home was transformed into a museum after Henry's death in 1927. At the age of sixty Henry retired from his extensive business interests in order to devote time to his book and art collections and the landscaping of his six hundred–acre ranch on which the mansion stands in San Marino, near Pasadena.

Among other outstanding collections, the museum boasts an incredible hall of portraits called the Thornton Portrait Gallery. As I walked through the halls looking at the political, artistic, social, and military leaders featured in the portraits, I was gripped by a distinct sense of "intention" in their faces. These were leaders from another century who lived strategically and with purpose. They didn't leave much to chance when it came to ambition and career goals.

* Leaders of the nineteenth century were good at knowing their One Big Thing.

Walking through that gallery I realized that one of the key reasons these men and women were great was because they had discovered the power of focus. In today's culture it might seem restrictive to guide a young man or woman from childhood into a career in law, politics, the military, or music. Certainly in those days the options for a woman or member of a minority were far more limited than today.

But in the vast majority of cases, their lives were "designed" by their parents or their station in life. Few fought it, because at the time that was simply the way life was lived. They were all focused on One Big Thing. They had serious ambition, and lived lives of intentionality. As I studied the paintings of military generals, architects, writers and artists, business and government leaders, I wondered about the place of ambition in my own life. What would have happened had I lived my life more intentionally?

* What could have happened if I had discovered my one thing sooner?

I wonder if today we've become the victims of a desire to just live life as it comes—to assume that whatever works out is the best path. Especially if you're a child of the '60s, living a random life sounds somewhat romantic, but real influence in the world doesn't come at random. It rarely happens by accident. My father was a preacher from the South and had little knowledge of applying strategy to the art of living. As a result, I was well into my adult life before I even considered career planning or anything close to it. And by then it was pretty late.

Plus, coming from the Christian tradition as I do, it was actually frowned upon to take charge of our own lives. "Wait upon the Lord" was a refrain I heard a million times in church. We were encouraged to "seek His will for our lives," and see where He took us.

Today I look back and realize just how naïve I was. While each of those phrases is true, they're not referring to avoiding the hard work of discovering our place in this world. Jesus was a strong advocate of understanding the signs of the times and building upon a strong foundation:

Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash. (Matthew 7:24–27 NIV)

Without living strategically, our life could become a catastrophe. Walking through the Huntington Library's portrait gallery these questions swirled around in my mind:

• What if from an early age, my parents had been looking for areas in which I excelled?

• What if they had focused my education to take advantage of those areas?

• What if my father had encouraged me to pursue a specific career?

• And even if I had picked it myself later, what if I had been more serious?

• What if I had pursued my goals with more conviction?

"Things may come to those who wait, but only the things left by those who hustle." I'm told that quote is attributed to Abraham Lincoln, but hasn't been officially confirmed or denied by historians. (Did President Lincoln actually use the word hustle?) But either way, I like it. In many circles today, ambition is an ugly word. But the truth is, what's wrong with it? As long as it's braced with humility, what's wrong with planning, thinking ahead, and the desire to achieve something significant with our time on earth?

To influence today's culture, we need to have the experience, credentials, and relationships that only come by strategic living. Walking through that museum and staring up at those powerful portraits, I realized that great leaders of the past didn't just take life as it came—they understood how to make life happen.

WHAT'S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A JOB AND A DREAM?

One of my closest friends from high school has never discovered his one thing, and lives a life of misery. He began college with great excitement, but dropped out because he eventually lost interest. At one point he thought he wanted to be an actor, so he came to Hollywood. After a few years of failure, he took a class and became a real estate agent, but didn't last long there. He married, but the stress of never finding the right job broke that relationship apart.

Today, in his mid-fifties, he's working at a local coffee shop. Every day he reads the want ads, every day he scans the Internet for get-rich-quick ideas, and every day despairs of finding a dream he could call his own.

He's always worked hard, but the difference between a job and a dream has never been more clear than in the life of my friend.

What about you?

Is it time to discover the difference between a job and a dream?

Is it time to start living with purpose, intention, and ambition?

Who's painting the portrait of your life?

Chapter Two

DO WE REALLY HAVE A DESTINY?

Life's Loaded Question

You can't wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club. —Jack London, novelist

If you don't know where you are going, you'll end up some place else. —Yogi Berra, baseball legend

The issue of destiny is a loaded question. Nearly everyone wants to believe in the concept. Atheists may believe that there's no God, no purpose, and no point to life, but it's pretty tough living that philosophy out in the day-to-day trenches. The idea of destiny gives us a reason to go on, motivation that our lives matter beyond PTA meetings, job reviews, and visits to the local coffee shop.

The Christian tradition teaches that God has a purpose and plan for our lives. Because of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross, we have a higher calling and a guide to help us navigate our way through this world and the next. And Christians have certainly run with the destiny theme. Pastors use the word in their sermon and book titles, and if you look up Christian conferences, you'll be amazed how many use destiny in their title. There are Destiny conferences, Living Out Your Destiny conferences, Discovering Your Destiny conferences, Weekend of Destiny conferences, Women of Destiny conferences, the Affecting Destiny conferences, Spring Forth Destiny conferences, and I could go on and on. (Don't believe me? Just go online and search "destiny conference.")

Non-Christian traditions are no different. I was teaching in India recently and met a group of Hindu scholars discussing their own views about destiny. As I write this, the TV news is reporting the thousands of spiritualists and New Agers meeting at Stonehenge to welcome the summer solstice. The topic of discussion?

What does Stonehenge have to do with our destiny?

Religious or not, most people want to believe they have a purpose for living and would find it enormously difficult to go on without that knowledge.

So the question remains: Do we have a destiny, and is it possible to discover it?

I seriously doubt if we have a locked down, concrete, unchanging destiny we were born to accomplish. Destiny isn't a task. It's not an end point. It's not something you can check off a to-do list. In fact, that's where most people go wrong, and why so many attend destiny conferences, buy destiny books, and hear famous teachers speak on finding their destiny.

And why so many end up frustrated and unhappy.

* Your destiny is a moving target.

An unexpected divorce doesn't derail your destiny. The soldier who lost his legs in battle hasn't lost his destiny. Bankruptcy can't undermine your destiny.

Your destiny is a moving target, and that's why I prefer to use the word purpose or, as you've seen, your One Big Thing. Your purpose is bigger than any obstacle like physical limitations, financial circum- stances, being fired, or other failures. Nothing can change the fact that you have a unique reason for being here, and there's still time for it to play out.

PURPOSE CAN BE REVEALED IN THREE IMPORTANT WAYS

First, in my experience, a handful of people have known it all their lives.

From a young age, it seems they've always known what they were born to accomplish and have pursued it with passion. I've met writers who have remarkable manuscripts they wrote as children; pastors who, at eight years old, stood on stools to preach to other kids in the neighborhood; and we've all met the whizkid who ran his lemonade stand like it was Walmart, while we stood by helpless with our cardboard box and plastic cups.

You're not one of these people because you're reading this book. They never think about discovering their purpose because it's all they've ever known. It's easy to be envious of these men and women because they've spent their lives focusing on the calling, and not having to anguish over which calling it might be.

A second group discovers their One Big Thing in a moment of epiphany.

Dictionary.com defines epiphany as "a sudden, intuitive perception of or insight into the reality or essential meaning of something, usually initiated by some simple, homely, or commonplace occurrence or experience."

In other words—a moment of revelation. The clouds part, the sun shines, and the angelic choir sings. I've heard thousands of stories of people who experienced this kind of moment—usually while in the act of doing something. I've discovered that most people experience that insight in the process of action. Few One Big Thing revelations come while sitting on the sofa watching The Simpsons. (That's not to say it couldn't happen.)

By the way—when I say revelation I'm not necessarily referring to some mystical, spooky, or spiritual experience. Very often a rev- elation is simply putting the pieces together. It's the moment when everything about your life makes sense and you suddenly see what you're supposed to be doing.

It's the "aha!" or "eureka!" moment.

Keep in mind that revelations come in all sizes and relate to all kinds of issues—most of which are not related to your OBT. I had a minor revelation this morning working on this book. I was unhappy with a section of the manuscript, but when I cut and pasted the section into another chapter, it suddenly all made sense. A chapter that I had been struggling with now works, and I only realized it the moment I hit paste and saw that section in context.

Hopefully these moments happen to you all the time:

• The right person joins your team at the office and suddenly you're firing on all cylinders.

• Your child has a breakthrough in school that you never expected.

• You finally "get it" after staying up late to research the new project at work.

• Sitting in church, the pastor makes a statement that completely changes the way you look at a particular issue.

• Moving a single chair in your living room transforms the look and feel of your home.

• You finally understand what makes your spouse tick. (Okay— that was a stretch.)

These are important and can sometimes make or break careers and relationships. But don't get them confused with the really big revelation about what you were born to accomplish. The moment when you discover your One Big Thing.

Finally, the third (and largest) group in my experience are the rest of us who discover our OBT through a much longer and progressive experience.

Rather than an explosive "aha!" moment, we find bits and pieces along the trail—take a few wrong turns in the process—and eventually start piecing together the puzzle of our lives.

This is the team I'm on, and chances are this is you as well.

I would have loved to have discovered my one thing as a young man and, like those leaders in the portrait gallery at the Huntington Library, pursued it with passion, conviction, and intention. But because I had no encouragement, training, or coaching, I wandered down many blind alleys and spent many years wondering if there was any purpose at all.

The list of things I was pursuing grew longer and longer—and trust me, I was serious about each one:

• I thought about being a piano player, and made extra money in college playing at restaurants and clubs around town.

• I wanted to be an astronaut, and found a local congressman to vouch for my application to the Air Force Academy.

• I wanted to be an athlete and received multiple college sports scholarships.

• I did a short stint doing some pretty amateurish magic shows.

• I even have a drawer full of my unproduced screenplays, and an unpublished novel.

So these and other attempts weren't passing fancies. I was committed, but never fulfilled. As a result, the more I searched the more frustrated I became.

It took me years before I started noticing the connections, honestly facing up to what I was actually good at doing versus what I wanted to do, and then finally embracing the way I was wired. Like picking up signs on a trail, things eventually began to make sense.

Is there such a thing as destiny?

I think so, but we've spent too much time looking to the idea of destiny as a quick fix, a get-rich scheme, or a stopping point. We think we'll attend a conference and our destiny will be revealed to us during a workshop or seminar. We hope that it will descend out of the sky or someone will reveal it to us—for only a $49 conference fee.

Destiny wants to be pursued. It wants to be discovered. Why? Because it's in the journey we learn to understand and value what it means.

Destiny is not a matter of chance; but a matter of choice. It is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved. —William Jennings Bryan, politician

Sometimes I meet people who always knew their One Big Thing, and you know what they struggle with? I wonder if ...? They wonder what their life might have been like had they pursued another path, or made another decision. They know they're doing exactly what they should be doing—and are perfectly satisfied—but late at night when nobody's watching, they fantasize about something else they might have done.

The successful Broadway singer wonders what it would have been like teaching music in high school.

The high-powered CEO wonders what it would have been like to run a small bookstore.

The powerful politician thinks about the days when she was interning at that social service agency downtown.

But you and I know better. We who have tried all those things, hit the dead ends, and slammed against our share of walls don't fantasize about other options because we've already experienced the obstacles. As we close in on our OBT, we can focus—undistracted by what might have been—because we know it already was.

What are your passions? Do you hide them under a bushel? Instead, tell the world that you love cooking, hockey, NASCAR, or—whatever it is—because pursuing your passions makes you more interesting, and interesting people are enchanting. —Guy Kawasaki, author of Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds, and Actions

(Continues...)



Excerpted from ONE BIG THING by PHIL COOKE Copyright © 2012 by Philip Howard Cooke. Excerpted by permission of Thomas Nelson. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Table of Contents

Introduction.- The Big Questions xi

1 Who's Painting the Portrait of Your Life?: The Power of Intentional Living 1

2 Do We Really Have a Destiny?: Life's Loaded Question 7

3 Why One Big Thing?: Living in a Culture of Distraction 17

4 The Power of One Big Thing: The Key to Having Influence 41

5 The Power of Perception: Is Your One Thing About Having a Brand? 47

6 The Power of Values: Why Your One Big Thing Must Express Who You Really Are 63

7 What's Your One Big Thing?: The Question Only You Can Answer 71

8 The Map of Your Future: Road Signs on the Journey to the One Big Thing 85

9 Become a Force to be Reckoned with: Getting Your Story Out There 119

10 Just When You Thought it Would be Easy: Challenges to Your One Big Thing 139

11 It's Never Too Late: The Time to Begin Is Now 147

12 It's Not About You: Living Out the Potential of Your One Big Thing 155

Epilogue: You're Not Crazy 167

Acknowledgments 173

Notes 175

About The Author 177

Index 178

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 14 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 14 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 18, 2012

    As a fairly recent convert to the world according to Phil Cooke,

    As a fairly recent convert to the world according to Phil Cooke, I was elated at the opportunity to review a pre-release copy of the Hollywood Producer/Director/Consultant’s latest book, “One Big Thing: Discovering What You Were Born to Do”. As a Leadership Coach, often working with clients struggling to discover their “One Big Thing,” I was, more than a little, curious to hear what he had to say on the subject.

    Phil approaches the topic with practical understanding forged from his own personal journey and combines it with wisdom from others to provide a very readable and helpful guide to everyone looking for a more fulfilling life.

    “One Big Thing” goes beyond the usual “find-your-purpose” fare. It not only guides readers through practical methods of personal discovery, but also leverages Cooke’s ample media knowledge. He offers helpful tips on personal branding and provides sage advice on how to cut through the cluttered world of marketing, and get noticed by the right people. This is the first time I have seen this topic addressed in book form and I was delighted to see it here.
    Unlike some materials I have read, Cooke makes no bones about the fact that, for many of us, this can be a challenging process. He notes that while some people seem to be born “knowing” what they should do with their life, most of us struggle toward discovery. This book is not a step-by-step guide to knowing your destiny, (I wouldn’t buy it if it made such a claim,) it does however provide tools and describe signs to watch for along your journey.

    So, in the words of Phil Cooke, “What is it that makes you come alive? What excites and empowers you? What were you born to do, and how can you get that message out there?” If you’re not sure, and are willing to embark on an exciting adventure, engage “One Big Thing.” It’s a great place to start! I will be recommending it to my clients and students.

    Last Updated (Saturday, 30 June 2012 20:15)

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 14, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Many people wander through life with no direction or personal go

    Many people wander through life with no direction or personal goals, even successful individuals with good jobs and hefty salaries. Modern-day Renaissance man Phil Cooke, a media consultant, offers some great ideas about how to discover your true purpose in life and to work toward it. Practical and inspirational, Cooke explains how to live a meaningful life and offers plenty of warmth and encouragement. getAbstract recommends his ideas to those who want to live life to the fullest, particularly those who share his heartfelt Christian perspective.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 26, 2012

    One B1G Thing by Phil Cooke takes you way beyond the basics of j

    One B1G Thing by Phil Cooke takes you way beyond the basics of just
    finding your purpose. Phil Cooke coaches the reader to connect purpose
    with passion, passion with pursuit, and pursuit to a life of
    productivity and fruitfulness. This book is not just a good read, but if
    applied can be a roadmap to your destiny. Phil doesn't tell you what to
    do, but instead uses the art of asking you the tough questions that will
    help you eliminate the unnecessary, identify what your good at, narrow
    your focus, streamline your efforts and expand your influence. Many of
    us who have a life message or mission also have a desire to stand out in
    a noisy world, so how do we do get noticed in the midst of all the
    noise? One B1G Thing asks these type of questions and encourages the
    reader to take the time to hone in on their ONE B1G Thing! This book
    gives you practical tools to prevent you from getting distracted from
    your destiny and develop a determination to zero in on the very thing
    that you were born to do. I think of when I first entered youth
    ministry I couldn't believe I was getting paid for my passion for young
    people as a youth pastor, yet over time as life's seasons change, if
    you're not careful your passion can turn into just a paycheck. As
    passion wanes purpose can get muddied, passion can fizzle and your
    pursuit becomes aimless. Phil Cooke has written a book to help you
    simplify your life to pursuing ONE B1G Thing. If you're a jack of all
    trades master of none this book is for you. If your dream has been
    neutralized by too many decisions this book is for you. If your stuck in
    the noise and want to quiet the voices this book is for you. If your
    trying to figure out your expertise, let an expert like Phil Cooke who
    has helped hundreds of successful businesses, non profits and churches,
    help you!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 7, 2012

    We live in a noisy world where we are constantly being asked &ld

    We live in a noisy world where we are constantly being asked “What is our destiny?” In One Big Thing, Phil Cooke explains that we are not locked in by destiny, rather destiny is a moving target that we need to go after. We need to also live intentionally and strategically. As we are being pulled in many different directions or pursue multiple passions, Phil says that we need to find that One Big Thing and go after that with all our passion, instead of going after multiple smaller passions half-heartedly. The book is peppered with quotations and also Phil’s personal experiences.

    I really enjoyed this book. It was a great reminder that we need to find that one thing that we can be great at and pursue it. Phil gave a lot of great advice from his personal experiences. For me it let me know that my destiny isn’t preplanned, and I haven’t missed the boat. I can still make a difference in this world by going after that one thing I am either good at or have a passion for. I would encourage everyone to read this book if you need encouragement about pursuing your dreams.

    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 1, 2012

    One Big Thing: Discovering What You Were Born to Do by Phil Cook

    One Big Thing: Discovering What You Were Born to Do by Phil Cooke

    An interesting read. Delving into every person’s core question – what is my purpose in this world? We all question what we’re supposed to do with our lives, from the high school student making choices for his future career to the corporate CEO questioning why none of what he does is satisfying.
    The Author sets about trying to help the reader to answer various questions about themselves, their values, their hopes and dreams and their skills in an effort to figure out what their “One Big Thing” is.

    He uses many interesting illustrations of people who clearly found their “One Big Thing” and offers practical advice on finding, birthing and working toward the achievement of this one thing. The book is packed with practical solutions to discovering your purpose – living intentionally, avoiding distractions, branding yourself and following through on the road to your “One Big Thing”.

    I do get the practicalities of the book and I have picked up some great tips in my endeavors’ in my own business which I believe is the inspired One Big Thing in my life. It’s well written, funny and very enlightening in many instances. It is worth a read.

    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 19, 2012

    I've worked as a media/story consultant for the past ten years,

    I've worked as a media/story consultant for the past ten years, and if I've learned anything, it's that you can solve any problem as long as you ask the right questions. That's what Phil Cooke does in his new book, One Big Thing. He asks you all the questions you need to answer in order to help you find your purpose in life, you're One Big Thing.

    He doesn't get caught up in vague notions or distracting clichés. Instead, he uses simple language to impart practical wisdom. And like any good friend or mentor, he walks with you each step of the way. He sets before you a map and issues you a challenge. More than that, he offers you a key that, when used to open the right door, shows you the path to a future with purpose.

    Whether you've pursued shallow fame or empty fortune, or simply allowed the distractions and responsibilities of everyday life to keep you from your dream (even if you've forgotten your dream or lost your passion), you can shake off those distractions and take the first step on that grand adventure that is your life.

    Accept the challenge. Read Phil's book; find your One Big Thing, and become precisely who you were meant to be.

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  • Posted July 19, 2012

    A Worthwhile Journey Phil Cooke’s life experience stands

    A Worthwhile Journey

    Phil Cooke’s life experience stands him head and shoulders above most others in tackling these questions: Why am I here? What am I supposed to accomplish? What was I born to do? This is paramount. I want to know the person whose book I am reading knows what they’re talking about. Rest assured. Phil’s own One Big Thing, helping people and organizations engage their culture more effectively, is the foundation upon which he is able to expertly guide others on this life-changing, challenging journey.

    Along the way, Phil doesn’t pretend to provide all the answers, but what he does provide is a road map on how to get there. What comes easy to you? What do you love? What drives you crazy? What do you want to leave behind? After reading his book, these questions stay with me and help guide me in defining my own One Big Thing.

    We each have a unique DNA. It’s an understanding of who we are that makes the difference. This book should be required reading for anyone interested in that pursuit.

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  • Posted July 18, 2012

    One Big Thing is the kind of book I wish every friend and collea

    One Big Thing is the kind of book I wish every friend and colleague would read! It offers insight to sharpen the focus on your One Big Thing in life by reviewing how you're wired, what your passions are and what destiny is calling you to. The book offers questions and filters to run your own thoughts and dreams through, along with stories of historical figures to current day life changers who searched and discovered their One Big Thing. I highly recommend this book!

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  • Posted July 18, 2012

    Phil Cooke, in One Big Thing, takes you on a journey of self dis

    Phil Cooke, in One Big Thing, takes you on a journey of self discovery and prods you to ask yourself the hard questions about your purpose for being. If you are like me and are engaged in creative activity it's a refreshing experience to learn of the path a truly remarkable creative individual has taken in his life's path and learn from his wisdom. Reading this book reminded me of the verse from the Bible that reads: "Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom; Yea, with all thy getting get understanding." This book will help you get the understanding you need to find and develop your hidden talents and achieve your highest purpose in life. Filled with great anecdotes and practical suggestions, Cooke has cut through the haze and delivered a valuable guide to assist you in finding that One Big Thing that only you can do and do better than anyone else in the world.

    As I said, this is not a self-help book, but more of a self-discovery book. Phil constantly reminds us to focus on that one overriding passion that motivates you and avoid distractions that will dilute your efforts. The book will prepare you to navigate the various land-mines that you will likely encounter along the way toward achieving your life's dream.

    As you read this book, you'll realize that you're not alone and you're not crazy! Dream big. Take what Phil Cooke has to say in this book to heart and who knows, you just might change the world.

    Richard Bagdazian
    Executive Director
    San Diego Christian Film Festival

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  • Posted July 18, 2012

    I'm a lifelong "self-assessment junkie". My wife and I

    I'm a lifelong "self-assessment junkie". My wife and I have grown personally and professionally by taking time to read books on the topic, take "tests", consider how we're made, and try to live that out. Phil Cooke has done a remarkable job of addressing a question that most of us face, and have faced for years. This is not a "Five Proven Keys" book, but there are plenty of practical concepts, questions, and stories that were very helpful to me - even though I've studied the subject quite a bit.

    Phil's approach is hard hitting, but hopeful. You'll have a clearer view of yourself after reading the book. Don't be alarmed by the road-kill, they're just some sacred cows you'll see along the way. The author's enthusiasm and experience jumps off the page. This book will help you live more intentionally. Highly recommend.

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  • Posted July 18, 2012

    Another brilliant book by Phil Cooke! One Big Thing is likened t

    Another brilliant book by Phil Cooke! One Big Thing is likened to an aptitude test- the measure and discovery of your greatest passion and how to strategically engage it. Phil challenges you to do some honest, gut-level thinking about your talents, gifts and abilities. He leads you through an inspirational journey with lots of relatable examples, sensible applications, as well as helps identify distractions that steal from your life. Phil's message is not hype, but rather a search and recovery for what is lost... and what can be found.

    One Big Thing is a game changer in my current decision making process - I'm asking the right questions now to get the right answers. This is a thought provoking and life changing book for anyone who seeks to find a dream they can call their own. I can think of no other author who can hit this subject with such truth and impact. I know I'll be talking about this book for a long time and recommending it to others for years to come.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 18, 2012

    Phil Cooke appeals to everyone in this book! It's a question any

    Phil Cooke appeals to everyone in this book! It's a question anyone has at ANY age. For me, I'm of a generation that has had some trouble with this question, and my high school and college classes were all a bit unfocused. I think this book should be on college bookshelves everywhere!!!

    The quotes in this book make you want to tear them out and stick them on your wall, computer, desk, etc.

    I feel so inspired to get out there and focus on my "One Big Thing" - this book has clarified so many burning questions that have kept me up all night about what I was meant to do in life, what my purpose was, etc.

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  • Posted July 18, 2012

    Phil Cooke, in true 'PC' fashion, drives hard questions to make

    Phil Cooke, in true 'PC' fashion, drives hard questions to make you think. One Big Thing is no easy five steps self-help book -- this book is a process that put in the hands of people in any field, at a critical time in their life, could be life-changing.

    The biggest thing about One Big Thing - is the need to keep learning and growing in this changing world. Keeping from distraction in the digital world is one Phil's biggest warnings. Creating margins, focusing on goals, all the while engaging in the digital culture, is a balancing act for all of us.

    Phil manages to pull the cord at both ends by reminding us that we need to receive criticism equally with compliments. Phil makes one see the relevance of self-awareness with need for complete lack of self-importance. It's not about you. It's about the One Big Thing. Be encouraged - anyone can be creative, and know their One Big Thing.

    This book could go in the hands of anyone looking for a career change, or a fresh out of college graduate. Read this book if you are ready for change. As you name the role, you then own it and become it. It is NEVER too late to find your One Big Thing, by being uniquely YOU!

    Jim Collin's Good to Great is for businesses like Phil Cooke's One Big Thing is for Purpose and Passion. By finding the intersection of your passion and the world's biggest need -- and what people are willing to pay you for - you can find what you were born to do!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 18, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

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