I have never kept secret my love for Anne Bogel, her blog, Modern Mrs. Darcy, and especially her podcast, What Should I Read Next. My friend suggested her podcast to me a year and a half ago, and I am a huge fan now. Her suggestions, not just for what books to read but also for how to read, have revolutionized my reading life. Perhaps my favorite post was, "7 Simple Ways to Read More This Year."
When I heard she was writing a book, I knew I wanted to be on the launch team. Any slight connection to Anne? Yes, please!
Anne's book is titled Reading People. I have a penchant for not reading anything beyond the title (I don't want things spoiled). One time I accidentally read an unfinished mystery by Charles Dickens because of my refusal to read the back cover. This book is no different. I heard the title months ago and immediately thought it was about people who read (Reading People? Right? It makes sense...please tell me I'm not crazy!).
I got on the launch team thinking this was a book about people who read. Guess what? It's not. Instead, it's about Reading...people. This book is a primer on all types of personality sorters. Anne covers:
Introverts & Extroverts
Highly Sensitive People
So basically everything personality wise. I already had done some reading on Myers-Briggs and the Enneagram, but even with that, I learned SO much. Anne has done her research, and it shows. But she manages to not sound like a lecture, by weaving in a personal connection.
My favorite part of this book was her takeaways about personality. I have lots of friends who LOVE personality typing. But sometimes I feel like others can use those as a crutch: "Oh, I do that because I'm an introvert/a J/a type 3." Um, no...you did that because you were being a jerk or rude.
In the last chapter of the book, Anne writes, "My personality doesn't prescribe my actions, but it does help me thoughtfully consider them in a way I couldn't before. If my personality is the lens through which I see the world, then I've learned to look at it instead of just through it. I've learned to notice where it's serving me well and where it's stirring up trouble. I've become better at noticing how my lens differs from other people's lenses and what kinds of communication breakdowns are likely to result. And then I've learned how to deal with them." Anne presents all of this personality typing as a way to truly understand ourselves and then try to understand others, not as a way to justify actions.
I also had some major AHA moments throughout the book, in regards to my personality types. I've always thought I was a TJ (Myers-Briggs), and I do test right down the middle. But I think I lean toward the FJ side; I think I'm a feeler who thinks she's a thinker (Hm, how many times can I say think?). I also realized that I have major HSP tendencies, even though I'm not introverted.
The only negative about this book is that I read the kindle copy (because it's pre-release). This is a book I can't wait to own, so that I can flip to chapters easily. I read through this book quickly (and I usually struggle to read non-fiction quickly!), but I keep wanting to go back and reference chapters and sections!
This book doesn't come out until September 19th, but you can pre-order it here or here (and it's less than $10 at both!). If you pre-order it, you get the audiobook free (and Anne is reading it) and Anne's online "What's Your Reading Personality?" class. Check out the official website because that's how you prove you pre-ordered it!
I rarely buy books. I love to borrow them from the library or friends. But this book is one that I can't wait to own a physical copy. I can't wait to hear what others think!