Reading Normal Gets You Nowhere by Kelly Cutrone and Meredith Bryan
by Helene Malmsio
Well, let’s see how I go with this book Normal Gets You Nowhere, since 40% of Amazon book reviewers pretty much canned it. I’m not fussed by use of the F-word, but I do expect to get some valuable content that I can actually put to USE from any self help / personal development book that I invest my money and time into.
It begins very well with the message that spending your life living to meet the expectations of conformity is a waste of your energy if you are a creative soul.
But I doubt that this book requires the reader to be an extreme eccentric...
“If you aspire to be yourself, and I hope you do, things like education, self- confidence, and learning to communicate and defend yourself are superimportant tools.
It begins by discussing the numbing of the general public psyche, including being spoon fed by the media to shape what they are supposed to think.... generally numbing us to our own natural perspectives of the world.
“The people who work at media brands are experts at giving us not what we want to see, but what they know we won’t be able to turn away from.
They make it so that we can’t help but look or click; they ensnare us with a combination of the Divine and the sadistic.
In doing so, I believe they not only keep us numb and distract us from what’s important in life—they manipulate us into wreaking more havoc on ourselves.
After all, what we think is what we manifest, and I do not need or want people in the media helping me sculpt my thoughts.
Over time, our perception and intention of ourselves and our lives can’t help but become aligned with this fear-based messaging. It can make us paralyzed instead of proactive.”
I totally agree with this. I stopped watching the TV news years ago, after patiently watching for hours on end for the ‘updates’ and ‘breaking news’ the reporters kept promising... as I watched one interviewer interviewing another interviewer for their non professional views on the disaster that had just happened.
Suddenly I woke up to the fact that the ‘news’ was simply regurgitating the same thin collection of facts and ‘beating’ it up to try and create hypnotic noise that would keep our eyeballs glued to the screen.
And, and, and.... I’ve just read here diatribe about publicists promoting the use of animal fur in fashion.... Yahoo!... she is as anti fur as I am and had vigorously campaigned on social networks to get some campaigns stopped in their tracks. We need more publicists and activists in the media like this woman!
“But denial is a dangerous drug. People have been programmed not to dig a little deeper to find out why they think something’s sexy.
In the comfortably numb generation, we think that seeing something on the news makes it true and that seeing something in the pages of our favorite fashion magazine makes it glamorous.”
The information in Chapter 2 about sex and relationships is perfect for young women who haven’t a clue what its really about. Mothers, go get this book for your teen daughters... BEFORE ... they start learning by trial and error.
The chapter about Holy Days, or more realistically Hollidays... is such common sense I think a lot of people have already broken out of that ‘norm’ paradigm long ago. I just hope more people read this and follow in her steps... it just makes good sense.
In the part 1 section of Normal Gets You Nowhere there is much discussion about the discovery of the amazing life of Eleanor Roosevelt, which surprised me, as I thought everyone was aware of how utterly stunning and powerful this first lady was.
“Eleanor Roosevelt was a woman ahead of her time. The First Lady is at least expected to live at the White House, which Eleanor couldn’t be bothered with.
She didn’t give a fuck about sleeping with her husband; she had better things to do! It got to the point that it was actually news when she showed up.
This was probably because, despite the fact that she bore President Roosevelt six children, her husband maintained a lover throughout their marriage—who also happened to be her best friend. “
This section becomes very personal as Kelly describes her own experiences with increased awareness and empathy for the world’s suffering. Very intense and very interesting section.
“The Divine is demanding we become proactive to stop the suffering of humanity.”
Chapter five is about COMPASSION, which is also the message of the Dalai Lama, maybe considered as the only useful emotion for us all to share and grow. Even toward our enemies.
Kelly discusses how we are numb when it comes to seeing the need around us...
“Most of us are taught by our parents to turn away from people in the street who are in desperate need of help! We’re told to keep walking, to “mind our own business.”
But then in Chapter 6 we are next given a chapter on the cruel and unjust aspects of law in business, which would harden the heart of anyone – lol!
Chapter 7 begins with the mystery of people burning other people.
I’ve always been mystified by how ‘friends’ can suddenly flip on you for no reason... like your ‘Use By’ date has suddenly come up and now you are curdled milk that must be discarded from their lives. A mystery.
“Just like we’ve been programmed to walk by homeless people lying on the street in desperation, we’ve been programmed to dump and discard friends anytime we’re hurt or something inappropriate has been done to us.”
Friendships are suffering as a result, with people claiming fewer and fewer amounts of close friends in their lives each year.
Kelly advocates starting No Matter What Clubs where we stick with our friends through thick and thin, giving examples of where this works well.
Chapter eight touches on the processes of aging and dying... alone and in a family.
The book concludes with ponderings about life and normalcy and the value of swimming against the current...
“In my early forties, having strived for years to accomplish many of the things I wanted in my life, from creating a business to raising a daughter, I found myself wondering what was left to do, and be.
The answer, I now know, is to be of service to others. Compassion and true Universal Motherhood start with consciousness—with awakening to what’s going on all around us in this world and summoning our courage and creativity to change it
A good book. I enjoyed it.
Now will go read her first book to see what the original fuss about this writer was all about.
Learn more about the book and read more reader reviews by clicking on the book cover below:
Get your copy of the book here >> Normal Gets You Nowhere
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