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The Precious Present

( 21 )

Overview

Discover the precious present and find yourself!

A simple story, engagingly told, The Precious Present does more than capture the heart; it is a valuable gift for anyone seeking a deeper level of fulfillment and personal happiness.

Telling a story of vital significance in today's fast-paced, competitive environment, The Precious Present will help you discover the joy in life we all seek--whether we go to Wall ...

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Overview

Discover the precious present and find yourself!

A simple story, engagingly told, The Precious Present does more than capture the heart; it is a valuable gift for anyone seeking a deeper level of fulfillment and personal happiness.

Telling a story of vital significance in today's fast-paced, competitive environment, The Precious Present will help you discover the joy in life we all seek--whether we go to Wall Street or around the world to find it.

Just as Spencer Johnson's bestseller The One Minute Manager helped rehumanize the workplace around the world, The Precious Present helps each reader rediscover his or her own humanity.  This beautiful tale demonstrates the delicate art of balancing your spiritual and material needs, and shows how this goal can be maddeningly elusive--and gloriously attainable.

Ten years ago, even before he co-authored The One Minute Manager, Spencer Johnson put pen to paper and created a classic. In the tradition of The Prophet, this profound tale has taught hundreds of thousands of readers how to be happy with themselves and their lives. Now redesigned with original woodcut illustrations and two-color interiors.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"The Precious Present puts life in its simplest form.  We should all follow its message and live life in the wonderful state The Precious Present awards each of us.  I read it to all of my teams before we take the floor for the first day of practice."
--Rick Pitino, author of Success is a Choice
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780385468053
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 3/28/1984
  • Edition description: Revised
  • Pages: 80
  • Sales rank: 49,856
  • Product dimensions: 5.68 (w) x 8.55 (h) x 0.58 (d)

Meet the Author

Spencer Johnson, M.D., is the author of several New York Times bestsellers, including The One Minute Manager, all in the entertaining style of a parable that contains useful information readers can use in their own lives.  There are more than thirteen million copies of his books in print in over twenty-five languages.

Dr. Johnson's education includes a psychology degree from the University of Southern California, an M.D. from the Royal College of Surgeons and medical clerkships at Harvard Medical School and the Mayo Clinic.

Biography

Spencer Johnson is an M.D. who has become better known for fixing ailing corporations than healing the sick, first with his 1982 business classic The One Minute Manager (coauthored with psychiatrist Kenneth Blanchard) and then, unforgettably, with Who Moved My Cheese?, a word-of-mouth sensation that eventually remained on the New York Times bestseller list for over two years and has been translated into 11 languages.

Word had slowly built up about Cheese, based on the strength of recommendations from heavy-hitter executives at Procter & Gamble, GE, Hewlett-Packard and others. Businesses, hit by the downshifting economy, began ordering copies by the thousands; by 2000, it was a national bestseller. The book sets up a story about four characters who live in a maze: Hem and Haw, who are little people; and Sniff and Scurry, who are mice.

Johnson, who based the story on the fact that mice rarely go back to the same place to look for cheese and felt that humans might benefit from the example, created the story for himself as a way of helping himself get through a divorce. Urged by former writing partner Blanchard to set the story down in book form, Johnson finally did – and nothing happened, at first. But over two years, the book picked up momentum, not only among companies who were trying to deal with everything from sales downturns to massive layoffs, but among individuals who found the book helped them gain a new perspective on personal situations as well.

Johnson’s forte is to create allegorical stories that present simple, digestible solutions (or paths to solutions) for seemingly huge challenges. The approach is far from immune to criticism from those who complain that Who Moved My Cheese? is simplistic and silly; Johnson doesn’t argue with either barb (though he might prefer "simple" over "simplistic"). His message is that being simpler and sillier makes us better adapters and decision-makers, and all of his books boil down to opening oneself to possibility and better communication. The ideas aren’t revolutionary: As Johnson said in an ABC News chat, “The challenge always for me and for others is to live the story and not just read about it.”

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    1. Date of Birth:
      January 1, 1940
    2. Place of Birth:
      South Dakota
    1. Education:
      B.A. in psychology, University of Southern California, 1963; M.D., Royal College of Surgeons
    2. Website:

Read an Excerpt

Once there was a boy. . . who listened to an old man.

And, thus, began to learn about The Precious Present.

"It is a present because it is a gift," the contented man explained.

And it is called The Precious Present, because it is the best present of all.

When the boy asked why, the old man explained.

"It is the best present a person can receive because anyone who receives such a gift is happy forever."

"Wow!" the little boy exclaimed. "I hope someone gives me The Precious Present. Maybe I'll get it for Christmas."

The boy ran off to play.

And the old man smiled.

He liked to watch the little boy play.

He saw the smile on the youngster's face and heard him laughing as he swung from a nearby tree.

The boy was happy.

And it was a joy to see.

The old man also liked to watch the boy work.

He even rose early on Saturday mornings to watch the little laborer across the street mow the lawn.

The boy actually whistled while he worked.

The little child was happy no matter what he was doing.

It was, indeed, a joy to behold.

When he thought about what the old man had said, the boy thought he understood.

He knew about presents. . .

Like the bicycle he got for his birthday and the gifts he found under the tree on Christmas morning.

But as the boy thought more about it, he knew.

The joy of toys never lasts forever.

The boy began to feel uneasy.

"What then," he wondered,"is The Precious Present?

"What could be so good. . . so much better than any other present. . . that it is called The Precious Present?

"What could possibly make me happy forever?"

He found it difficult to even imagine the answer.

And so he returned to ask the old man.

"Is The Precious Present a magical ring? One that I might put on my finger and make all my wishes come true?"

"No," he was told.

The Precious Present Has Nothing To Do With Wishing.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 21 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(17)

4 Star

(3)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(1)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 21 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 13, 2013

    Wonderful book as a gift or for yourself

    This is a sweet, simply told parable-like story. I have given numerous copies to others who needed cheer in their lives, or just because I cared about them. I re-read my copy each year as a reminder of what's important and really matters.

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  • Posted August 9, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Short & Sweet

    This book was recommended in the book The Happy Minimalist. I am glad I read it. It is an easy read that warms your heart. A smart play of the words "Precious Present"

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  • Posted October 10, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    The Precious Present

    Originally published in 1984, this tiny little book packs a powerful punch with the message of gift giving. Understanding your purpose in life and appreciating what life has to give is a timeless message which is applicable to any age or anyone that ponders life's purpose.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 28, 2009

    Beaitiful gift

    I love this book and have given it as a gift many many times over the years. It is a heartwarming story about the most important thing in life - which is living in the now! It's touching and warms the heart.

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  • Posted August 29, 2009

    This is a great feel good book that can be read in an hour yet contains something we all need to know or remember.

    I highly recommend this book to all readers. It is the perfect gift for a graduate. Spencer Johnson writes in a simple form to remind us of what is missing in our thought processes. I know this would benefit anyone who buys this and absorbs the story. An excellent read!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2006

    What a book!

    I think this book is a must have for people who find themselves thinking about the future too much or may be 'lost' in their past. It helps give a better understanding of why it is important to live in the present and appreciate life on a day-to-day basis! I recommend this book as a great read and plan to give it as a gift to most of my friends!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 8, 2005

    Awesome For Someone Who Continues to Live in the Past

    I give this present every year at Christmas to someone I found in that year needs the 'Precious Present' It changes lives.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 26, 2005

    Excellent Excellent book!!!

    This book is the best book ever. This book is inpirastional, and verry verry helpful. Anyone would tell you this book is good. If your always thinking about the past or Future this book will keep you in your place.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 4, 2004

    Inspirational!

    Because I have had some misfortunes in my life, I used to dwell on my past a lot. This also made me plan for the future a lot because I was never happy with myself. This book though, has really helped me live in the present moment! I can really say that I am a happier person because I read this book. The other completely excellent book that has helped put this in even better perspective is 'The Ever-Transcending Spirit' by Toru Sato. That one is also a fantastic book! Like Gandhi said, 'Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.' These books are very true to the spirit of people like this!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 17, 2004

    FIND YOURSELF IN A BOOK

    Absolutely keeps me grounded when I feel out of control or I worry about the future. This is a MUST read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 24, 2003

    My Favorite Book!

    This book delivers a very important message about enjoying your life. It is a wonderful gift to give.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 16, 2002

    The book I live by

    I love this book and I would not have had any of the success I enjoy today, without it

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 10, 2003

    This Book Touched Me in Many Ways

    I attended a therapy group back in 12/2000, this book "The Precious Present" was read to the group. It touched my life, so I went out and purchased it. I have used it as a tool in my life on a daily basis. I want to thank you Spencer Johnson for such an outstanding book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 13, 2001

    A MUST FOR EVERYONE

    This is a small book with a very powerful message. I read it all the time!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 20, 2001

    Finding peace in the here and now

    The author has created a simple path for the reader to follow in the search for peace and clarity in the here and now. While this book may read like a children's book for adults, its slow pace requires the mind to quiet down so that it can really register the meaning of the author's words. As the book says, 'The Present Is Simply Who I Am Just The Way I Am... Right Now. And It Is Precious.' We may be familiar with this philosophy in theory, but the experience of reading it over again in this format brings it home.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2000

    A book you'll never throw away...

    This book was given to me for my high school graduation, over ten years ago (wow, that dates me), and it's traveled with me everywhere I've lived since then. It was inspirational when I was 17, as a sort of guide to the way I hoped to live my life. Now, when I re-read it, it helps me to focus on the most important thing: the present. We tend to get so caught up in the future, wishing we had something that's out of our reach right now, or the past, having regrets and wishing we'd done things differently. This book helps keep me grounded in the now, and appreciate the things I do have. I highly recommend it, for a gift or for yourself.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 30, 2000

    SUPER

    Outside of the Bible, the 'best' book ever written when applied to day-to-day living!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 17, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 24, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 2, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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