Book Reviews, Spotlight Sunday, The Blind Reviewer

Book Review: Leading You Out of the Darkness Into the Light

Leading you out of the Darkness Book Cover

“Take many small steps and never stop stepping,” Max says. Truer words have never been spoken.

First there was Helen Keller, there’s Erik Weihenmayer, and now we’ve got Maxwell Ivey Jr. and his wisdom and generous spirit, total willingness to help others.

Here is: “A Blind Man’s Inspirational Guide to Success” – in his own words and through concrete steps he guides the reader toward finding their own.

He is a peer advisor for

The American Foundation for the Blind.

I met him through social media and he has happily advised me on numerous occasions and now he wants to help you.

I had never met a fellow visually impaired person who had experience running and selling carnival rides. When I first spoke with him I checked out his only website at the time:

The Midway Marketplace

Within months of knowing him he began his second website and from there he was unstoppable:

The Blind Blogger

He wrote a book. Seriously. He wrote a book. I was impressed by this, when I heard it, because this is an admirable thing to have done, and no small feat.

This book lays everything out in a neat and orderly fashion, leading the reader through with eleven clear-cut steps, such as:

Step 1: Begin by determining your end goal.

Step 2: Assess the situation

Step 3: Do what you can, one thing at a time

Step 5: Ask for help when you need it

Step 6: Staying motivated by taking small steps

Step 7: Celebrate your accomplishments

And much more. For the rest of Max’s steps, check this book out.

“Don’t delay – sign up today!”

Catchy lines like this are great, but he offers so much more within this short ebook.

Role model. Mentor. Coach.

These are just a few names Max goes by and a few ways he wants to help anyone who might be lost, needing to be pointed in the right direction.

This book is reflective, motivational, and practical.

You’re only truly in the dark when you have lost purpose. In this book, Max aims to help you find it again, all while referring to his own process of finding it himself.

Most people figure, if this blind gentleman is able to find his way, there is no real excuse or reason for me not to. This gives credit where credit is due, to the author, and makes the idea of coming out of the darkness and into the light a hugely powerful image.

He believes in the best in people. If I could choose the single biggest message from this book, it would definitely be that asking for help is encouraged and an important step for human growth and self-development, for reaching one’s goals.

It is impossible to get through life, as someone who is blind or visually impaired, without seeking help from others at one time or another. This can cause one to become extra stubborn and self-reliant, but sooner or later help is needed and necessary. This, following by example, is the most essential lesson I took away from Max in this book and I believe you will too.

He shows that it’s okay…perfectly healthy…the key to success. Nobody does it alone.

Having trust and faith in people and to be willing and open to asking for and accepting other people’s help are two things one learns from the start when visually impaired. These are important lessons anyone can learn and should adopt.

Unexpected things can come from reaching out to others. This one lone thought is highly motivational for me and the best thing I took from reading Max’s words and meeting Max to begin with. Max is proof of this and this is the most inspiring part of his story and of this book.

One foot in front of the other.

Eagle Scouts gave Max badges to track his progress. There are often no physical badges given out in life for your accomplishments, but Max’s above words are true all the same.

His experiences as an Eagle Scout, having gastric surgery, and just learning to persevere in life with a physical disability clearly taught him some valuable lessons, which he outlines here through clear and action-oriented steps. These sound easy to follow on paper, but they take work. His unique approach in this book is to continually remind the reader to stop reading and make good on the suggested exercises and then to contact him to discuss how each step of the process went. This personal connection he cultivates with each and every reader is what sets him apart from most self-help books on the market.

Yes, often, historically, self-help guide books have been overrated, but Max truly follows this well-known line, “putting your money where your mouth is”. Max does this and more. He doesn’t just “talk the talk”, but he “walks the walk” that is necessary for any real and lasting success in life.

Once you experience how good it feels to have accomplished steps toward your goal it will become a feeling you want to repeat over and over again.
I am on this journey myself right now and reading this book has confirmed all I have been telling myself and everything I have been applying to my own life in recent months.

Gratitude:

Being visually impaired teaches also that it is important, to get through life, to be able and willing to look for the good wherever possible. I may not have one first prize, but I wrote my story and had the courage to share it. I may not have gotten what I hoped for in a particular experience, but once I could get past the disappointment I could find the valuable lessons I did learn and that is enough.

I know I am not the only one to get something from this book, to apply to my own life, and I won’t be the last to find strength and encouragement from it.

Friend…coach…rock.

What does success mean to you? Max wants to know. He is genuinely interested.

HE shares his own definition of success.

Failures and accomplishments.
Negativity and positivity.
Overcoming adversity.

He invites readers to share, not only their successes, but their failures too.

He has learned to be persistent and to never give up or give in, using the example of banging on the door and if you receive no answer, to check the tool with which you are using.

Thank you Max, for writing this, and for being the example we all need.

Purchasing links:

(Ebook Format)

SELZ

(Kindle version)

Amazon

(Print copy)

Create Space

Acknowledgements:

As Max continually says in Leading You Out of the Darkness Into the Light, nobody does anything of real worth and value by themselves. Max had help from his friends at every step of the way.

He needed help with the visual aspects, specifically cover images and formatting: Jenny Rollo and Angela McCall.

His editor, Lorraine Reguly, can be found at her website:

Wording Well

Her site’s motto is “Helping writers become authors” and that is what she has graciously done for Max and what Max has done is truly remarkable.

If you feel like you are lost in uncertainty, adrift in the darkness that life sometimes brings, let Max help guide you out of that darkness and back into the light.

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