Book Review: The Undeniable Power of Movement by Nicole Mott

There is a saying about “not judging a book by its cover”, which I know really has nothing to do with books but I’m going to be very literal here and remind you that you should also not judge a book by its title.  I have a very unscientific process for choosing the books that I read for these book reviews.  I go to some of my favorite author pages and look for book suggestions, I get recommendations from friends and when all else fails I put a title of a book that I read and liked into a search engine and go to the “because you read ___ you might like” section. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t.  All this sounds like I’m getting ready to tell you I didn’t like this book, which is not true. It just wasn’t what I was expecting. 

For starters I’m pretty sure the main purpose of this book was to get people to buy into the business that this author has started.  While she mentions the business in the beginning of the book it’s not really until the last couple of chapters where you start to think “oh yes, she is trying to sell me something”.  I read the book with that in mind and was able to disregard the references to her business. 

The title of the book talks about movement, but the author and I were thinking about two different types of movement.  Again, I was being very literal and her definition of movement is “… the action a person takes to complete a task, a project, or reach a goal.”  I guess I should have paid more attention to the subtitle of the book: The irrefutable power habits of elite athletes, leaders, and high performers to achieve any goal.  While not was I expecting, still good stuff to think about. 

In the introduction the author tells some personal stories about her sons which she references frequently in the book.  She gives her definition of movement and the basic premise of the book, “The developmental foundation of movement is focus and discipline.  To initiate movement, you must find the purposereduce distractions, and implement discipline. To continue movement, you must focus on four essentials; mindset, awareness and self-controlhealth and human capacity.” The book is then broken into 3 parts focusing on the about areas, which she labels:

Foundation (focus and discipline)

Methodology for Movement (define purpose, reduce distractions, implementing discipline)

Essentials for Movement (mindset, awareness and self-control, health, human capacity)

Mott tries to dispel what she calls “myths” to try to prove many of her points.  The first one she talks about in the Focus chapter is multitasking and I did agree with her position. Her point being that multitasking is usually counterproductive.  Trying to do too many things at one time just means we don’t do anything well. Her main point in the discipline chapter was that motivation alone is not going to help you reach your goals, you need discipline to do this.  In the second section of the book, she gives some more concrete examples of how to do theses things.  The third section of the book were where I found my two favorite chapter and my two least favorite chapters. I enjoyed the chapters on mindset and awareness and self-control.  

Pros: This book is short and easy to read.  The author makes some good points about discipline and how to put practices into place to create habits.  She summarizes the ideas of a growth mindset versus a fixed mindset and why it is important to have a growth mindset. In the health chapter she talks about the importance of stretching.  

Cons: I didn’t learn anything new in this book.  I have to say if you really want to learn about the different types of mindsets read “Mindset” by Carole Dweck.  The book discusses building habits but if you want to learn how to build habits read “Atomic Habits” by James Clear. She makes some good points about nutrition and exercise in the health chapter, she even says to find what works best for you, but at the same time she promotes intermittent fasting and HIIT workout programs.  The author runs some kind “professional development” company and by the end of the book it was starting to feel to me that the point of the book was to sell her program.  That could just be me I tend to be a little cynical sometimes. 

The other thing I found very strange is that I couldn’t find any bad reviews on this book.  It is a pretty new book with a 2023 copyright date. But still on Amazon and Goodreads it has mainly 5-star reviews with just a couple of 4-star reviews.  Again, I may be being a little cynical here but I’m glad her friends like her book. And she does now have a 3-star review on Goodreads.

Overall, this is not a bad book.  The author presents some good ideas and puts them into an easy to think about format.  She does fall a little short on presenting ways to implement these ideas into your life.  If you are looking for a good reminder book as a follow up to “Mindset” or “Atomic Habits” this is not a bad one.  If you haven’t read either of those books I would recommend starting with them as this book just scratches the surface on what you would learn from either of those books. 

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