Book Review: Organization and Education Development: Reflecting and Transforming in a Self-Discovery Journey by Dr. Suresh Nanwani

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By Bina Patel, PhD

The pandemic as unfortunate of an event as it is has brought alongside a few benefits. It has shown each of us the value of spending time with our families, connecting with our children, and perhaps the need to re-engage with the in-laws is really a choice. More importantly and above all, the pandemic has helped to identify the need to care for oneself. Self-care, a once subliminal concept is more than just a trend today. It is a new way of life. Self-care is a mental shift that when understood and applied with true self-accountability measures, we recognize that it serves as the medicine for the body, mind, and soul. In his book, an open access book, Organization and Education Development: Reflecting and Transforming in a Self-Discovery Journey, Dr. Suresh Nanwani introduces readers to a journey of self-discovery and self-care.

Picture Credit: Routledge.com

Dr. Nanwani’s vision towards hard work and perseverance is relatable. And often with the assumption being, with hard work and perseverance a better quality of life will follow. But what happens when a major crisis occurs and disrupts life? Dr. Nanwani, at the age of sixty four shares the process of self-discovery arising from major events in his life. He was diagnosed with prostate cancer before entering his doctoral program. In this book, I came to admire Dr. Nanwani’s resiliency, which became a part of his identity.  To be resilient, the author states, is not just to beat cancer, rather a lifestyle shift, which begins with self-discovery that leads to self-care. Specifically, it is a mental shift built upon self-truth and self-integration. Behavior and actions will follow with a shift in mindset. The importance of being true to oneself is ever present as Dr. Nanwani sets his voyage of self-discovery by reaching out to his friends and students to collect viewpoints of himself. In my opinion, getting feedback on oneself can be quite difficult and I applaud his courage. Dr. Nanwani presents a very creative self-assessment tool with a feedback model on self-evaluation. As a conflict resolution practitioner, I will utilize this tool for leaders seeking self-assessments in lieu of 360 degree reviews.

The tool is designed on a practical framework, the research paradigm that seeks to compare survey data of himself and receive behavioral feedback from friends  and students. It is instrumental in understanding why and how an individual should make self-reflection a habit; and strive to make change happen through action.  

Picture Credit by Unsplash.com, Rob Wicks

Overall, this is a fascinating read empowering readers to apply the techniques Dr. Nanwani shares in his book, to not just learn about oneself, but how to navigate major events in one’s life and repurpose that energy to be positive, purposeful, and resilient. Essentially, Dr. Nanwani shares with his readers the importance of self-care in overcoming negative bias. This book is a journey. It is a journey that helps to identify the importance of caring for your soul through personal growth and continuous self-reflection.

As I read his book, it gave me an opportunity to think about my life and all that has occurred, the primary point being, we are each living, learning, and becoming more resilient through our experiences. It is our experiences, as the author states that shape who we become later in life, how we think, act, and react to circumstances that arise. And it is never too late to be compassionate despite major events in one’s life. In this book, I recognized a major takeaway to self-discovery, which is linked directly to self-help. Self-help, as Dr. Nanwani reminds his readers is built upon resiliency, compassion, and how to take care of yourself. This book is an insightful read!

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