Entreprising Notes pages are for my thoughts as I progress through a book… You can check out the Review page here, which is about grading the book as fairly as possible.

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To buy 12 Rules For Life click here.

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December 4, 2019

This is me procrastinating…

I took a break from reading yesterday and focused exclusively on Entreprising’s first “thing” for sale.

It’s not ready yet, but get excited because the Entreprising Guide to The Alter Ego Effect is on its way!

An Entreprising book guide is not a summary; rather its a summary of a book’s arguments.

And, I think it’s pretty awesome.

I’ve been wanting to write the Entreprising Guides for YEARS.

Like, nearly four years, to be exact.

Truth be told, they’re HARD to write. Like, really hard.

So, yesterday, I hunkered down and worked some magic on the primary claim and its first supporting arguments.

An attempt at not procrastinating…

But today, I got back to listening/reading (my process is to listen to the chapter on Audible and then read it on Kindle) … and I realized that, yes, part of my break yesterday was I promised myself I would work on the guide…

Another part was because it was Tuesday, and I’d been waiting for the 7th installment of the Dolly Parton’s America podcast (it’s so good)… So I listened to that on my morning walk.

And a third part … the part that I’m having to admit at 6:40pm on Wednesday – almost ten hours after having listened to the second chapter of 12 Rules For Life – I just wasn’t looking forward to it.

In fact, I was kind of dreading listening to the second chapter.

I did it anyway; I listened to the second chapter this morning, and then found a bunch of reasons not to read it when I got home…

I finally did read it, though. Right before my afternoon walk.

And I graded it

But I just realized, three hours later, I wasn’t looking forward to writing these notes… I was procrastinating this work, too.

So what’s an Entreprising person like myself to do?

I’m calling it in the second round…

TKO, as in he knocked the enthusiasm out of me.

All I know about KonMari is that if it doesn’t spark joy, scrap it.

I don’t know that I would subscribe to that in all things – again, I haven’t read or consumed any of her stuff…

But I’m not above cherry-picking my reading. In fact, the whole point of Entreprising is to help you do just that.

I’ve got too much to read, and not a lot of time to read it.

Also, 12 Rules For Life wasn’t turning out to be very promising from a business perspective.

So I’ll leave you with the takeaway from the second chapter.

Take your damned pills already.

Oversimplification of Jordan Peterson’s point in the second chapter of 12 Rules For Life

The second chapter is a whole bunch of words and stories going on to explain why we don’t see fit to take care of ourselves (original sin style), and to give us permission, along with a hefty dose of guilt, to take care of ourselves anyway. Because we owe it to other people, if not ourselves.

It was exhausting to even write that paragraph.

Look. Everything leading up to this book made it look promising.

I like a lot of what I’ve seen from Jordan Peterson up to this book…

And 12 Rules For Life currently has a 4.8 star average rating on Amazon with over 5,000+ reviews. I was hoping to LOVE this book…

(Hint: I always hope to love a book I’m reading…)

I also want to point out I don’t disagree with the advice that I found in this book’s first two chapters.

Rule 1: Stand up straight with your shoulders back…

Rule 2: Treat yourself like someone you’re responsible for helping…

Sound advice from Jordan Peterson

It’s just not my cup of tea.

But it might be your cup of tea if you like your advice mixed with a ton of circuitous Jungian psychology, biblical references, sex and gender tug-of-war, and general pontificating.

Apparently a lot of people do.

You can see a more specific review here (although I’m only reviewing the first two chapters).

I guess that means I have to figure out what to read next… hmmm. Any suggestions? Toss them to me over at tonya@entreprising.com. I’d love to hear from you!

December 2, 2019

And we’re off!

Chapter 1: Rule 1 – Stand Up Straight With Your Shoulders Back

Jordan Peterson is what we call a straight shooter. There is no sugar to go with the medicine. Swallow it already.

That’s the general feeling I had coming out of the first chapter.

I’m somewhat familiar with Peterson from lectures/talks he’s given and I’ve seen around the internet. So it wasn’t surprising.

There’s an edge to the way he presents his ideas that’s hard to miss.

And that doesn’t bother me – and apparently doesn’t bother the other 5,000+ plus who have reviewed his book.

So, was it any good? You can check out the score on the Review page here.

Or keep reading below for the bits I took from the first chapter…

12 Rules For Life – Rule 1 Quotation

Circumstances change, and so can you.

Jordan B. Peterson, 12 Rules For Life – Rule 1 Page 38

I can’t recall the number of times that I’ve allowed myself to rationalize stagnation over progress because “I am who I am,” and that’s that.

I also can’t recall the number of times I’ve encountered that faulty logic with other people I know, and many of whom I love.

It happened just this morning.

The gist goes like this:

I want something to change.
I resist change.
I am who I am.

This simple quotation doesn’t look like much, but “circumstances change, and so can you,” is a reminder that you don’t have to stay stuck.

I love this. I need this kind of reminder in my life. And I’m guessing it’s those kinds of reminders that make Peterson’s 12 Rules For Life so popular.

The trick is realizing you’re stuck in that pattern. It’s really easy to buy your own stories…

Thinking back, I remember the last several years knowing I needed exercise for my health, but staying stuck in the stories that I don’t like to exercise.

My life hack for 2017/2018 had been whenever my partner suggested we walk the dog together, I would never turn him down. I would stop everything and just go.

It wasn’t enough exercise; but it didn’t require me to plan or make much of an effort, so I went with it.

When my partner passed away, I just sort of stopped. I couldn’t get motivated to do it myself – not as a matter of grief, but as a matter of me.

And then I felt the pain of having stopped. In my lower back, to be specific.

Circumstances changed.

I have become a walker. It is something I do once or twice a day. An hour each time.

I joke that I do it for my coffee – and that was a rule I set for myself. If I want coffee, I have to walk for it. But the truth is, I have the means to have coffee without walking…

And for my afternoon walks, there’s no coffee – just water. Certainly not motivating enough for a 3-mile walk.

My point is, I wasn’t a person who exercised.

I am now a person who exercises quite a bit. (It’s been almost a year.)

Circumstances change. And so can I.

And so can you.


Funny, I can’t seem to get out of the communication theme. So many of the top books on The List have communication right at their core.

This first chapter is literally a command to stand up straight and put your shoulders back…

As a way to communicate to yourself and others that you are not at the bottom, and to start a positive feedback loop that improves your station over time.

Going from Daring Greatly to 12 Rules For Life is a little jarring.

Daring Greatly by Brené Brown contains a great deal of empathy.

There is no empathy in this chapter of 12 Rules.

Understanding? Explanation? Prescription? Yes, yes, and yes.

Empathy? No.


I think this book might be a book of 12 takeaways, and the title of each chapter is that chapter’s takeaway.

In this chapter’s case, that’s to stand up straight with your shoulders back.

I’ll let you know when I come across something else.

December 1, 2019

Excited to announce that 12 Rules For Life will be my next Entreprising read!

Stay tuned for notes here starting tomorrow!