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Things That Matter

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Member Reviews

So this is one of the first self help type books that I have really read. I recently decide to start working more on myself and my self growth so this seemed like a great place to start. This book takes a deep dive into finding purpose in your life and how to make the most of the time you have. Focusing on the distractions that many of us face. While I found some of this interesting and helpful, there were parts that I disagreed with in particular his insights around money unrealistic for the average person.

Overall I gave this 2.5 stars.
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Things that Matter: Overcoming Distraction to Pursue a More Meaningful Life by Joshua Becker


271 Pages
Publisher WaterBrook & Multnomah, WaterBrook
Release Date: April 19, 2022

Nonfiction, Self-Help, Minimalism, Health, Mind & Body, Spirit

I have been following Joshua’s blog and newsletter, Becoming Minimalist for years. When I saw that he wrote this book, I knew I had to read it. Although there are many mentions of his faith, it is not a religious book.

There are many Aha moments throughout. I found myself highlighting many sentences in the book repeatedly. The main message in the book is to live without regrets. He does not push the minimalist message, but it makes sense that if you have less, you will worry less, clean less, and spend less. This leaves more time to live. As I write this review, I am aware of previous things that distracted me from writing and habits that affected my quality of life. I have a plan for making the changes permanent and already started implementing some. If you need a gentle push to show you how to make permanent changes to your way or thinking about yourself or the things that you do, this is an excellent book.
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If you were to die today, what one thing would you be most disappointed you did not complete? (123/3445) Do you want to get off the easy path of the ordinary and immediate and get onto “a more intentional path that leads to a life that satisfies, and resonates beyond your own mortal existence – a life lived well”? (95/3445)

Becker has given us a good book to help us live a life that matters, with fewer regrets. He writes about finding our purpose, including an exercise investigating our passions and abilities, combining them with meeting the needs of others. He explores the obstacles to a life that matters and helps with strategies to remove them. I like his emphasis on self examination, helping us identify things that keep us from being our best self. I like his reminding us, “Selfless living results in greater overall life satisfaction.” (1120/3445)

Becker is passionate about minimalism and it shows in this book. He helps us see how having less stuff really allows us to go after our highest pursuits. He encourages us to be contributing people rather than consuming ones. He suggests we share our journey with others, not keeping hidden our insights to a better life.

This is a good book to help us live life with greater intention and fewer regrets. It's not easy. It may take a technology detox. It may take serious self examination regarding time, focus, and energy wasters. 

If you are willing to make the best of your remaining years, this book will help you get on the right path.

I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher. My comments are an independent and honest review.
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I found this book incredibly motivational. It helped me identify my priorities, limit distractions, and focus my time on things of significance. It is a great resource for the journey toward intentional living.
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This book is a great tool to aid you in realizing your “things” won’t impact anyone now or when you’re gone. Giving you the directions and reason why you should lie a life that’s fulfilling rather than living a life filling your home, your schedule, etc. Why keep things, be involved in groups or do things that are more toxic than bring you any happiness?

After cleaning out my 99 year old great aunt’s home full of “stuff” that meant nothing to me, this book took that perspective and reminded me it’s time to do the purging for myself as well as those I’ll leave behind. Watching the wasted money of things stored go to the thrift store or trash was rough. 

I recommend this book highly. 

Disclaimer: I received a digital ARC of this book from the publisher with no expectation in return. The opinions above are my own.
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I really enjoyed this book. It covers topics that are so relevant for today and the days ahead. Each chapter covers a distraction that we all probably experience and challenges us to make some changes in our mindsets and habits. I started the read knowing that technology is a huge distraction for me, and it was a great chapter to read. A couple of the chapters, like the ones on leisure and money, really got me thinking. I finished this book, enlightened and encouraged to become a better me. I want to make space for the things that matter most. Well done!
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#JoshuaBecker's book is so much more than removing physical and mental clutter (his established expertise), it is about looking within for those unsatisfied places we hide to the public but more importantly to ourselves. It is not only about living with less (less house, less distraction, less fear) but about finding more - of ourselves.
He suggests 'making choices to take you off the path of the ordinary and onto the path of intentionality'. He call you to be brave, to confront your fears of feeling anxious in the unknown, and to not let past mistakes hold you back to try again.
Becker reminds us to be selfless in our pursuit for contribution, to not horde our wealth/time/creativitiy for later use as the time we have is limited. And we don't know how much we have of it to spend on fruitless activities. Keep faith with the important things in your life - family, service, talents/skills.
One of the key points that reached me was our propensity to let our distraction (ie. catch up on a series on television) become our lifestyle. We all have either experienced or have been witness to the 'binge'.
A helpful, valuable book to digest, ponder and study for its merits. Who among us does not want a fulfilling life? #ThingsThatMatter refers to being a consumer or a contributor. It is easy to be a consumer, it is passive, it passes the time, watch, scroll, click. It takes spirit, commitment and agency to be a contributor. Being a contributor builds bridges, creates community, and leaves a legacy.
In spite of the depth of the words found in this book, it is still an easy read meant for all. I also appreciated the extensive list of acknowlegments that were included. Bravo to Becker for the authenticity which appears to be a tad more rare these days with other authors.
A highly recommend this book and thank #NetGalley and #WaterBrook&Multnomah for the opportunity to read an advance copy for my review.
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4 Understanding the Title Clearly Stars
* * * * Spoiler Free
I discovered Joshua Becker on YouTube. His way of communicating his ideas and theories about decluttering and living with less made so much sense and was easy to identify with. He just says things easily and in a straightforward way, yet never makes the person receiving them feel less than. 

With Things That Matter, he continues to approach important matters of the day. This looks at our need to declutter our internal "stuff", to look at what is truly important to us and those we care about. May sound like other books or ideas, but it takes someone like Joshua Becker to put these concepts together in a way that works all under the same cover. 

Thank you.
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I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher before its release. Let me start off by saying: I love this book and the message it sends. Things That Matter is a very honest book with real ways that each individual can reflect God here on earth as part of His creation. As a self employed mother with four kids ages 6 to 1, I'm generally short on time. Sometimes I get lost in the mundane everyday tasks. What I appreciate the most is the perspective that reading this book brought to me, and can give to anyone for that matter. Read this book - you won't regret it!
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A great addition to my Joshua Becker collection. I find that this particular book was helpful in fully rounding out the rest of the content I've read from Becker before. 
While the previous books were about minimizing, decluttering, finding purpose, and striving for a more fulfilling life- this particular book helped to put what really matters into perspective and specifically, how to put those things that matter first and foremost. Removing distractions from several different areas of life can help you minimize the competition for your attention from things such as social media, the need for applause, always chasing the next best thing, and from that ultimate end goal that seems good, but is it really what you want.
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Joshua Becker’s latest book is about so much more than simplifying your belongings. He talks about the distractions we allow to hold us back from living a meaningful life (things like fear, not serving others, leisure, etc…). There were things I hadn’t thought of before in my quest for a more intentional life. The chapter about retirement opened my eyes in a lot of ways! It is easy to read and understand, and also thought-provoking and encouraging. So many people in all stages of life will benefit from this book. I loved it.
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This was my first book by this author. At first glance I thought the ideas weren’t anything I hadn’t heard and considered before, but then the author added questions for consideration at the end of each chapter and I realized that I while I may have *thought* the idea wasn’t new to me, I clearly was not living in alignment with my values in several areas. It definitely provoked a lot of careful re-evaluation.

The book was a light read and set up in a way to make it easy to read a bit, think on it and come back. Although the author and I disagree with some underlying perspectives in certain areas, I still found the book approachable and was able to pick up applicable insights from it.

Thank you to the publisher for providing an ARC to review through NetGalley
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I really enjoyed this book, and I can say there are a lot of small moments of wisdom that really snuck up on me. The author is willing to use himself as an example in ways that make his points even more accessible and human. The chapters on money and finances are really wonderful, and they contain the kinds of reminders I will return to frequently. Becker shares a lot about himself without making it about him, and this is a rare skill for an author. I was happy to have a chance to read the book.
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Since I first read (and reread) the author’s “The More of Less”, I’ve been looking for similar guidance on minimizing the intangible “stuff” in my life that keeps me at times from achieving a personal goal. Becker’s direct approach outlining the objective (pursuing a life with meaning) and the obstacles that may get in the way (distractions) kept me engaged with short chapters and personal narrative drawing from his own experience. I found myself naming my own challenges and outlining what steps I was going to take to minimize their impact on my larger life goals. I like that this book does not rely on productivity hacks, to do lists or other management techniques to achieve the goal of living with less distraction and more focus. I know that this is another book I’ll be reading again and again.
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I’ve been a big fan of Joshua Becker and his message about minimalism making room in your life for things that matter most so I couldn’t wait to read this book.

This book talks about the distractions that keep us from living a life of purpose. All of the distractions that he talks about in the book I’ve definitely experienced. Some of them I didn’t think of as keeping me from living a more meaningful life until it was pointed out in this book. I wrote down many quotes and statistics. I loved the stories and examples of each of these distractions. They helped me to really envision what he was talking about.

I also love the section at the back of the book that has exercises to help you find your purpose.
I highly recommend this book to everyone. It’s a book that I believe will benefit everyone that reads it. I don’t often say that about a book. I look forward to seeing videos on his YouTube channel exploring the themes of this book more and discussing them with others.

Thank you, Net Galley and Waterbrook Press for the ARC!
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I've been familiar with Becker's writing on minimalism for quite awhile so I was especially excited to read his latest book about distractions derailing a purpose-filled life. Becker discusses various things that can distract us from our purpose including an urge to earn more and more money, accruing more physical possessions, unintentional time spent on tech (viewing media, social media platforms, gaming, etc), pursuing leisure time as an end life goal and more. Unlike his previous book, this book is less about physical minimalism and more about paring down what serves us best and supports us in living a meaningful life, contributing to others. This book fell into my hands at just the right time and I had no idea how much I needed it. 

Thanks to WaterBrook & Multnomah and NetGalley for the eARC in exchange for my honest review.
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Things That Matter
by Joshua Becker
Pub Date: April 19, 2022
Waterbrook & Multnomah 
A LIfe with No Regrets! 
" We are not given a short life, but we make it short. We are not Ill-supplied but wasteful of it. Life is long if you know how to use it. Seneca, "On the Shortness of Life" 
Thanks to the author, publisher, and NetGalley for the ARC of this book. 
What do people most regret about their life?  I enjoyed this book and gave me some helpful ideas on living my life more fully. 
4 stars
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This is a must-have resource to help one live a more full and happy life. It is full of great strategies, advice, and easy to implement ideas. This is one I'll return to again and again. Many thanks to the author, publisher, and NetGalley for the advanced copy of the book.
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As I am reading a book, I often wonder who is the author writing for. 
When I was reading the book, I nodded along at many points in the beginning of the book. 
Then we got to the work section.
The author goes into detail about how we all should be loving our work. WE should work for our passion. 
I think this is out of touch with reality. So many of us work because we HAVE to. We HAVE to work to make a living. If everyone did their passion, we would not have custodians, housekeepers, etc.
Then the author states DO NOT RETIRE! Wait! WHAT?!
yep, stay in the workforce till you die, nothing wrong with that. 
The author neglects to state that the majority of people CAN"T work till they die. 
MOST people are forced out of the work force because of health reasons. 

At this point in the book, I really had to wonder WHO was the author talking to. 

He went further....maybe you have OVERSAVED for retirement.
When Americans are barely saving for make that statement is really dangerous.
His point tied to this was that we should give out $5 a week to a charity of our choice to see if we still have a roof over our heads, food in our belly.
then to up the donation every week. 

It was very hard to take the author seriously when he seemed to contradict himself in just about everything that he wrote. 

Overall, I would be cautious to give this book to anyone to read without a firm grasp of the realities facing many Americans today.
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I have been following Joshua Becker for several years now and was super excited when I heard he has written another book.  He is very passionate about helping others minimize not only their possessions but also with removing anything that distracts you from your best life.  This passion is very obvious in Things That Matter and this book does not disappoint.

He dives into different distractions that can prevent you from leading a meaningful and purposeful life and gives practical advice on how to remove those distractions.  Joshua is not only very insightful and inspirational, but he is so relatable and down to earth.  This is a book that everyone should read, and I definitely plan on reading this one again and again anytime I need a reminder as to what is truly important.  This is a must read!
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