Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Book Review: 'Win at Losing' by Sam Weinman

Self-help books about transforming setbacks into successes abound. "Win at Losing," by Sam Weinman, enlightens and inspires us with its well-stated, sincere, and timeless message. Weinman is a sports journalist who is the digital editor of Golf Digest, as well as an enthusiastic amateur athlete. He describes his displeasure when he plays poorly, and admits that it is difficult for him to accept defeat graciously. To drive home his thesis that losing can be beneficial, he recounts anecdotes from the fields of politics, business, entertainment, and of course, sports.

Weinman quotes men and women who admit that bad luck, accidents, and mental mistakes can be devastating. However, instead of wallowing in self-pity, resilient people bounce back and are better able to deal with adversity in the future. They consider their negative experiences not as an end to their dreams, but as an opportunity to make changes for the better. In his most inspiring accounts, the author describes individuals who suffer meltdowns, but dig deep for the strength and motivation to start anew. Somehow, their disappointments become the genesis of tremendous growth, self-knowledge, and fulfillment.

Every golf fan knows that Greg Norman blew a six-shot lead in the Masters Tournament back in 1996, eventually losing to Nick Faldo. It was a painful and shocking slide that few saw coming. To his credit, however, Norman candidly owned up to his shortcomings and congratulated the winner. Although he was disappointed that he would never don the green jacket given to Masters champions, Norman received thousands of letters from fans who were impressed by his good sportsmanship. The other courageous individuals who are featured in "Win at Losing" speak candidly about elections they lost, businesses that went bust, and career-ending injuries. Weinman offers insightful advice from experts in the field of human behavior who state that, as paradoxical as it seems, losses may turn out to be blessings in disguise.

Editor's note: This review was written by Eleanor Bukowsky and has been reposted with permission. Like what you read? Subscribe to the SFRB's free daily email notice so you can be up-to-date on our latest articles. Scroll up this page to the sign-up field on your right.

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