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Parenting by the Book


Book Review

Book Review: 3 Seconds: The Power of Thinking Twice

by Les Parrott, Ph.D.
Publisher: Zondervan
June, 2007
Professional Growth/Personal Development
ISBN: 0310272491

If you could change your life within the span of three seconds, would you do it? If you had the ability to turn around your professional doldrums, spiritual stagnation, and personal melancholy by only investing three (count ’em!) seconds, would these not be the best three seconds you ever spent?

As fate and the power of the pen would have it, Dr. Les Parrott is here to tell you that changing your life will require neither a pilgrimage to Jerusalem, study with a yogi, nor thousands of dollars in motivational CDs, books, pamphlets, time consuming workshops, and other hype.

The secret is simple: three seconds. Three seconds to think before you speak, to think before you act, to think before you doubt – these three seconds is the time frame that separates a first impulse act from a second impulse that is drowned out by the majority of people not because they require sophisticated training or education, but simply because they are already busy reacting on the first impulse!

Here are some examples of what you will learn when you decide to peruse Dr. Parrott’s book:

  • Move from “there’s nothing I can do about it” to “I can’t do everything, but I can do something.”
  • Change the way you act from “I’ll do what happens to come my way” to “I’ll do what I’m designed to do.”
  • Harness your personal power by eradicating the attitude of “It’s not my problem, somebody else is to blame” and exchanging it for an approach that reflects the adage “The buck stops here.”

Dr. Parrott knows what he is taking about. Together with his wife Leslie they have founded the Center for Relationship Development at Seattle Pacific University. He is a clinical psychologist who knows what makes you tick and – more importantly – what may keep you from ticking! Together with his wife, they have devoted time and energy to work with couples to improve their dating relationships, marriages, and parenting, and in so doing have tackled the issues of faith, in-laws, money, sex, and other biggies.

Without doubt, a negative mindset is one the most destructive liabilities Dr. Parrott has encountered yet what makes this such an insidious way of being is the fact that in some cases a negative mindset masquerades as a mind which thinks itself incapable of accomplishment because of religious restrictions, abuse, or repeated failure. Strong emotions and a legalistic mindset have successfully shackled even the most well-intentioned individuals and the results are knee-jerk actions that will keep the person from attaining the greatness they are destined to experience.

Christian parents in particular will do well to not only understand how the power of thinking twice will change their lives, but also how to overcome early on the limitations children place on themselves. How often do you hear children say “I just can’t do it” only to turn to something that comes easier to them? They quit soccer, ballet, and piano not because they lack talent, but simply because it is hard and requires more practice and the ability to try again. How often do teens socialize with the wrong crowds, not because they enjoy the company but because they “vibes” they give off are so negative that others have a hard time being around them? While this book may not change their lives over night, it will give you a chance to help your children overcome the most destructive force in their small universes – themselves.

Something as simple as only three seconds can change a lifetime of self-imposed personal limitations! If you are not yet on your way to the bookstore to get your copy (and one to give a friend for New Years’), then you need to think again! This is a sorely needed book that you will not only enjoy but that will also open your eyes to the life you could be leading – three seconds at a time.

Sylvia Cochran

Sylvia is a writer, born and raised in Germany. Having been exposed to a variety of religions and traditions due to travel and study, Sylvia has been a student of the Bible for more than ten years and has for the last four years taught in small groups about Biblical principles, practical Christianity, Christian parenting, as well as the spiritual use of money.

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