I had high hopes for this book I will admit, but what started out as a potential 5 star book ended up with 2 on Goodreads.
After losing her high-octane job as an entertainment blogger, Noelle Hancock was lost. About to turn twenty-nine, she’d spent her career writing about celebrities’ lives and had forgotten how to live her own. Unemployed and full of self-doubt, she had no idea what she wanted out of life. She feared change—in fact, she feared almost everything. Once confident and ambitious, she had become crippled by anxiety, lacking the courage required even to attend a dinner party—until inspiration struck one day in the form of a quote on a chalkboard in a coffee shop:
“Do one thing every day that scares you.”
Painfully timid as a child, Eleanor Roosevelt dedicated herself to facing her fears, a commitment that shaped the rest of her life. With Eleanor as her guide, Noelle spends the months leading up to her thirtieth birthday pursuing a “Year of Fear.” From shark diving to fighter pilot lessons, from tap dancing and stand-up comedy to confronting old boyfriends, her hilarious and harrowing adventures teach her about who she is, and what she can become—lessons she makes vital for all of us.
The premise of the book is what drew me to it initially, however it really just ended up reading like a list of “look what I did in a year.” I wasn’t interested in her sky diving, or mountain climbing because it’s really not realistic to take a year off from work and do all of those things. Most people don’t have the time or the money. I was more interested in the every day things that people are afraid of, that they go out of their way to avoid. But those kind of fears were barely touched or talked about in her book.
There was a disconnect I found between her doing all of the big things (skydiving etc) and how doing those things helped her develop internally. Sky diving once or swimming with sharks once doesn’t erase the fear that those activities cause – and since there was no real discussion about how that helped her become a less fearful or anxious person the book got boring rather quickly.
The one thing I did like is that she talked about mindfulness and how using that tool helps us overcome fear and anxiety. That was helpful. If she had use that to relate more to herself and her fears and what she was internally going through the book would have been much better I think.