In his book, Simple Prosperity: Finding Real Wealth in a Sustainable Lifestyle, David Wann’s message to readers is how they can improve their lives by investing in a variety of real wealth sources. He does this by explaining to the readers a number of activities they can implement, for example, creating a richer life story through personal growth incentives. Personal growth depends on individual decisions and making personal choices, which he says is one of the best things in life. This book cuts across many audiences as it is relevant to parents, working class individuals and even school going teenagers. This is because it discusses the topic of happiness despite the challenges one may be facing.
In this particular chapter, the author explains to his readers the important things that an individual should consider in life, for example, happiness. He also explains the essential of personal growth which is the realization of what someone wants in life. This in turn helps him or her build a life script; a guide towards achieving personal growth. This is one of the strengths of the book as it encourages it readers to set their own goals to drive them to towards achieving what they want. He goes ahead to buck up this statement by saying that one needs for personal growth, is to identify what he or she wants and go for it.
Another important message of the chapter is where he says that every individual creates his or her own personal identity. Actually, we are the ones who define who we are. One needs to trust his or her own instincts, rely less on what the world wants and more on what he needs. We define ourselves by figuring out our strengths, beliefs and goals because it is one’s aspirations that drive them to the right direction. He supports this statement by asserting that all one has to do is to remain focused and creative all the way. When you fail once or twice, one should keep on keeping on. He illustrate this by giving an example of Abraham Lincoln who failed in business in the year 1831 and 1833, but managed to enter the US congress in the year 1843, 1845 and 1855 and successfully running for Presidency in 1860.
The book is relevant to its audience because it offers advice on how to develop oneself. In order to prepare a strong personal script, one has to look around for and address issues that are affecting the people. It is from these issues that one develops a strong script to use as guidelines for personal growth. This is because life on earth must have a strategy and a purpose. For personal growth, one needs freedom and fresh air to breathe in order to explore the other opportunities. Being less conscious of what other people say about you will save you a lot of money, this is because you do not have to spend on cars and other materials in order to meet their expectations.
The writer has successfully passed across his message on the theme of living a happy life. He says that success is not all about getting a good employment and earning a lot of money, which is totally true; money can not buy happiness. In the letter to his mother, he gives examples of instances that should be viewed as success, for example, giving a touching and an inspirational talk or having a happy year despite the low income and the challenges that one may be facing. This is true because in life, basic needs such as water and oxygen are more important in human life than expensive cars and mansions. In the interview with Jonathan Daniel, it also comes out that what people value at the end of their lives are really not the expensive items that they possess, but instead, the ordinary things, for example, feeling the sun on their faces. Therefore, man should not waste time worrying about death and material things, but instead, relax, calm their minds and release their trivialities.
Despite the success of this chapter in reaching its audience, it has some weaknesses. The first weakness of the chapter is where the author says that personal growth relies heavily on individuals’ satisfaction with the job that he has. However, this is a debatable point since one cannot be happy in a highly demanding job with peanut payment. For one to be satisfied in his job, he or she ought to be receiving enough payment to sustain his daily needs. Another weakness of the chapter is where he says that the measure of wealth is not according to the house one own, but in terms of time one spends laughing with people, the connection one has and also with what one learns. In the real world, wealth is measured in terms of the value of what an individual owns, especially in the capitalist countries. The world is so competitive and divided in classes based on the amount of wealth that people have. It is also in vain that you are learned and connected with people but you do not have enough money to sustain you.
At the end of the chapter, David Wann concludes with a statement by the former president of the US, Mr. J.F. Kennedy that, one of the most beautiful ways to add years into life is by following a script that you believe in yourself, based on the value that you admire and by treating other people as well as yourself properly.