On the heels of his masterful fable, The Angel Inside, Chris Widener delivers another home run. In 12 Pillars of Success, Widener teams up with personal development legend Jim Rohn to create a humorous and intelligent book that will keep you engaged from beginning to end.

The authors cleverly convey the titular dozen principles to live by through the charming story of a chance encounter that brings together Michael Jones and his mentor, a gardener named Charlie, for a series of life lessons at the wealthy estate of a mysterious Mr. Davis.

As Charlie patiently and eloquently imparts his knowledge and life experience to Michael, you may well find yourself having the same sort of “ah-ha” experiences that Michael feels. And given the authors’ inspirational style, I predict that you won’t be able to wait to apply them to your life. 12 Pillars leaves one with the sense that, while you may not be able to change your destination overnight, you can certainly change your direction overnight.

Michael feels stuck in a rut and loathes his job. His family relationships are out of alignment and he has no spiritual direction. He feels like a soul wandering aimlessly through time, attempting to find his place in this world. One has the sense that every road Michael has traveled has led to a dead end, and that his heart has made many attempts to take flight, yet has never left the ground of mundane living.

Charlie gives Michael tangible daily steps he can take to begin to experience a life of adventure instead of his current life of frustrated mediocrity. He portrays life as a journey and gives Michael the necessary tools to reach the summit of success. Charlie’s encouragement and guidance shows Michael that he can soar like an eagle through life and experience all it has to offer.

At the dramatic climax of the book, Charlie gives Michael guidance on how to face the last moment of his life when his soul slips the bonds of earth and his heart has pumped for the last time. He reminds Michael that this time will come—and sooner than he would like—and encourages him to make sure that there are no regrets. In his words, “Either you are going to run your life, or your life is going to run you.”

Charlie invokes the famous quote from Thoreau’s Walden: “The masses lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them.” This is where Michael was at the beginning of this story—but not where he is at its end.

120 pages; Jim Rohn International;
available at www.networkingtimes.com/catalog.