The Power of Wow - book by Cleis Press Inc. - review by Antipova

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The Power of Wow

Book by Cleis Press Inc.

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Genuinely Boosting Confidence, Especially For *NT*'s.

Even those who usually avoid self-help books (especially iNtuitive Thinking personalities) will find a lot to learn in The Power of Wow. The book reads quickly but asks you to approach it gradually, taking concrete steps and acting on them. Focus on your sensuality as an individual, in your social life, and in your sexual life in the book's three units---and bring out your true self in order to gain confidence. I didn't think this book would teach me much---I came away with more than I expected.
Published:
Pros:
Concrete, actionable strategies to improve confidence genuinely, workbook approach.
Cons:
Occasional silly words ("Fantabulous Five" means "five senses.") More theism than necessary.
Rating by reviewer:
4
extremely useful review
Another 'Guide to unleashing the confident, sexy you,' you say? I've browsed through several self-improvement books in shop aisles or on friends' coffee-tables over the years, and I've never been impressed before. It's easy for a confident author to throw together a bunch of buzz words, mix in some pseudoscience, and exclaim "just stop having low self-confidence! It's totally natural"---all without giving any actionable steps to becoming the way they tell you you should be.

When the Naked Reader Book Club chose Lori Bryant-Woolridge's "The Power of Wow" as a monthly book, I rolled my eyes---but selected it anyway. I consider myself to be quite sensually and sexually confident, but I'm not the most self-assured in the 'clothes on' realms of my life, and I'm terrible at accepting compliments. I figured a book like this couldn't hurt, and as I already had a new erotic book at my bedside this month, I would give it a shot.

The Introduction, Welcome, and Student Mixer left me feeling sort of neutral. On the one hand, the author had a pleasant writing tone, and seemed to take a hard-headed approach toward giving the reader actionable steps. On the other hand, I was leery of her using euphemisms like the "Fantabulous Five" for the five senses, and referring to the program as a "University." I'm fine with---and actually really appreciate---the fact that this book is set up in units containing simple lessons. Branding it as "Stiletto University" and promising me a "Master's in Sensual Arts" didn't really do anything for me, but at the end of the day it didn't interfere with the book's effectiveness at all, so I won't hold a grudge.

The 'Power of Wow' then moves on to three distinct units, each consisting of three lessons and a laboratory in which you flex the new skills you've been working on. The units build upon each other, as any good curriculum should---and they also give you impetus to really focus on your lessons throughout your day by encouraging a daily 'thought walk' and daily pelvic floor exercises. The first unit introduces you as an individual to sensual living, the second focuses on how to love yourself in social situations, and the third brings the book home to your sexual confidence. The book is then end-capped with a Final Exam in parallel with the entrance exam in unit one, followed by a Graduation section.

I was really inspired and intrigued by Unit One, Individual Wow. I read the whole unit happily realizing that sensuality comes naturally to me ("Ooh! I already do that! And I already do that too!"), and I wondered if 'The Power of Wow' was going to be the instruction-giving, prosaic little sister of Leaves of Grass (Project Gutenberg link), which is the book I attribute my early discovery of sensuality to. As I read along, though, I realized that there was real merit in Bryant-Woolridge's approach. If enjoying your five senses is not a high priority in your life, simply reading some Whitman might not give you the tools to start. I was impressed, when reading Unit One, at how actionable and useful the lessons actually seemed. Each day you undertake a lesson, you're given one sense to focus on, and a few great tips to engage that sense. During your daily walk, you're encouraged to live through your featured sense even more, and you are given encouragement to explore even further in a journal. I can see these lessons being really useful for someone who wants to become more sensual but isn't quite sure where to start.

Unit Two, Social Wow, is where I hoped to learn the most. The author focuses on flirting and social charm, which she explains "is a benevolent act. It is a gift of your time, appreciation, and interest that you give to others with no need, agenda, or desire to impress or win them over." She devotes part of this unit to giving the reader pep talks, which I found pretty neutral---but she also does give actionable tips toward accepting compliments (such as 'consider the feelings of the person complimenting you---they're actually giving you a gift---don't reject it!) and toward being confident in your true self. A lot of this unit focuses on being comfortable with yourself, which can then naturally manifests as confidence---and that made a lot of sense to this reader.

The final unit, Sexual Wow, focuses on shedding social barriers you might have inherited, and fully embracing your natural sexual self. Concrete tips such as sleeping naked, reading and writing erotica, remembering kisses that stand out in your mind, and connecting with your lover in small, actionable ways really make this unit seem like it will be effective for those who struggle in this area.
Experience
The laboratory for Unit Three is especially fun---you plan a sensual evening, including all your five senses and your full attention, for yourself and your lover (or just for yourself, if you're not in that stage of a relationship!)

Throughout the book, I was impressed with actionable ideas that really seem to make progress toward the full overarching goal of embracing yourself, and accepting the confidence which comes as a natural consequence of that. As an INF* personality type, I respond well to broad overarching theory that is presented in a series of discrete yet interconnected facts, and I learn best when I can take some form of action based on what I'm reading. The 'Power of Wow' gives readers exactly what works for me and others like me.

It does all this in a nicely bound, glue-backed paperback book in 257 pages. I read through the book in about five (scattered) hours, though I plan to go through Unit Two more slowly, and taking the 'course' as suggested should take nine weeks. The only thing I still want to mention, but which didn't fit in anywhere else, is that the author doesn't seem to be very inclusive of agnostics. There wasn't a lot of theism in the book, but there were enough references to "god-given gifts" and "meeting god" to make me feel left out. Since theism doesn't play a role in any of her concrete lessons (thankfully!), these references felt pretty unnecessary.

To be honest, I didn't expect to give 'The Power of Wow' a glowing review---but here we are. If you don't think you're as confident as you deserve to be, and you like to take concrete steps toward your goals, 'The Power of Wow' is an excellent place to start.
This product was provided free of charge to the reviewer. This review is in compliance with the FTC guidelines.
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My The Power of Wow tags
  • Who / How / What
    [ ? ]
    Who might this product be best for? How is it best used? What are the best circumstances or situations for using this product?
    • Everyone
    • Intj
    • Intp
  • Where
    [ ? ]
    Where / what types of places can this product be used?
    • Anywhere
  • Features
    [ ? ]
    What kind of features does this product offer?
    • Travel friendly
  • Body / part areas
    [ ? ]
    What areas on the body can this product be used / what areas does it stimulate best?
    • All over body
    • Brain
    • Genitals
  • General
    [ ? ]
    Other tags that are useful and descriptive for this product.
    • Useful!
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Comments
  • LilLostLenore
    LilLostLenore  
    nice review.
  • Just Tigger
    Just Tigger  
    Great Review
  • Crystal1
    Crystal1  
    Excellent review! It's so nice to hear this book is helpful and not just another collection of repackaged ideas most people already know! I may have to pick this up. Thanks!
  • Antipova
    Antipova  
    Thanks LilLostLenore, and Tigger and Kanga!

    I was super pleased myself, Crystal1! I hope lots of people are willing to give it a try, I probably would have overlooked it in a bookstore but I'm really glad I read it!
  • eeep
    eeep  
    Great review. The steps you describe sound interesting, I may need to check this one out soon.
  • Antipova
    Antipova  
    Thanks for stopping by, eeep---I was really surprised by how useful a lot of the steps were.
  • bluekaren
    bluekaren  
    WOW what a great review!
  • Antipova
    Antipova  
    Glad you liked it BlueKaren! I feel like my book reviews are much more useful the longer I'm in Naked Reader.
  • Lindsey123
    Lindsey123  
    great job.
  • Antipova
    Antipova  
    I'm very glad to have helped.
  • voenne
    voenne  
    This sounds interesting. Apart from the silly bits, it seems to have some good information/suggestions. Thanks for the review
  • Antipova
    Antipova  
    My pleasure, voenne! I really did get a lot of useful information from it.
  • Forever17
    Forever17  
    great details thanks
  • Antipova
    Antipova  
    I hope they were helpful!
  • Jewlickah
    Jewlickah  
    Great review. Thank you.
  • petname
    petname  
    I'm glad I read this review. It sounds like it's actually a pretty helpful and applicable read. I'll need to pick it up sometime!
  • Antipova
    Antipova  
    Hooray!
  • SexyStuff
    SexyStuff  
    Thanks!
  • thornrose
    thornrose  
    I want to read this
  • Missmarc
    Missmarc  
    Great review, thank you!
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