Title: Make It Happen: A Guide to Happiness for LDS Singles
Author: Kylee Shields
Release Date: October 2012
Publisher: Walnut Springs Press
Genre: LDS Self Help
FTC,FYI: I received a review copy in exchange for an honest review.
Reviewed by: Sheila
Do you know what it means to be a kigatsuku person? Are you currently in a “hurricane” relationship or a “bridge” relationship? Do you know what it takes to be “righteous in the dark”? Have you struggled to find your place in the world as an LDS single? Do you feel like a misfit or a menace—like a circle trying to fit into a square?
If so, you’re not alone. It used to be an anomaly to be twenty-one and single in the LDS culture, but now there are entire stakes filled with single adults. In this book, author Kylee Shields explains how you can make the most of your single life, even if your current situation isn’t what you expected.
Make It Happen is a collection of principles, blog entries, stories, and conversations had on couches, floors, kitchen tables, and at many single-adult gatherings. It is filled with practical ways to make changes in your life, find hope, increase faith, strengthen relationships, and build the kingdom
Being single is something I happen to know a lot about. First, as a single young adult, and now as a single, divorced, mom. Though both experiences have been different, there has also been many of the same feelings attached to these different times in my life. Kylee Shields book, Make It Happen, A Guide To Happiness for LDS Singles, could just be called, “A Guide to Happiness for ALL People.” I was pleasantly surprised, and quite pleased, to see that this book wasn’t just another dating book about how to win a spouse. This book centers on becoming the best person that you can be, and in turn this will bring about happiness in your life, single or not.
One of my favorite aspects of the book came at the end of each chapter. After a great topic, like Validation, or A Matter of Heart, Kylee leaves the reader with “Action Questions”. These questions help the reader focus on the topic just discussed and how to implement these ideas into their life. I found this a powerful aspect of the book, where I stopped and reflected on my life and considered how I could make some good changes.
Kylee shares such wonderful and rich stories from her life.You can’t help but be lifted up and inspired to change your life for the better. The title of the book, Make It Happen, exudes with such positive energy, you can’t help but be enthused to make good things happen in your life. I recommend this book to readers of all ages, teens, young adults, older adults…you name it! Everyone who reads this book, will come away with ideas of how to make happiness a part of their everyday life.
I am so pleased to share with you a guest post by Kylee!
Guest Post: A Matter of Heart
By Kylee Shields
In my book there are a few themes that circulate throughout. I talk a lot about wandering, loneliness, trails, and hearts. When I started putting this book together the one thing I really wanted to do was put my heart into this book in a way that people who had never met me could feel it and understand it. I was also hoping that as my heart whispered to their heart they could feel inspired, heard, and lots of empathy.
I think about hearts a lot. So much so that I devoted an entire chapter of my book on the topic. The following is an excerpt from chapter six, “A Matter of Heart” under the section titled, “The Healing Heart.”
“I wish we were as gentle with other people’s hearts as God is with ours. How do we deal with loss of love or the pain that love can cause? What about the wounded hearts, the lonely nights, the struggle to allow yourself to love again? What do we do about those who leave us brokenhearted, and those whose hearts we just can’t reach? In his book Making Loss Matter, Rabbi David Wolpe says:
Love is an ever fixed mark in the minds of poets, but in the world, love can fade or end. “Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,” wrote Shakespeare, “but bears it out even to the edge of doom.” We want to believe it. But for those who have lost love, the heroic words about everlastingness are mocked by the pain of unhealed hearts. . . . The inescapable paradox of love is this: It is made precious by time, which threatens to destroy it. Only through loss can we love, but it is loss that wracks our heart. . . . True love is the outgrowth of the ability to have faith. . . . To love is to accept the possibility of suffering. . . . The root of love is bound up with a knowledge of pain and a consciousness of loss. In the end, such love connects us to God. (1999, 119)
All who love know there is a measure of pain that accompanies it. There is even secondary pain caused by watching someone you care about suffer. But we gladly pick up the broken pieces of our hearts and love again because the alternative is unthinkable. After all, it is the pain that makes us fully aware of the kind of love we have. In his book The Four Loves, C.S. Lewis wrote:
To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one . . . Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness . . . the alternative to tragedy, or at least the risk of tragedy, is damnation. The only place outside of Heaven where you can be perfectly safe from all the dangers and perturbations of love is Hell. (1960, 121)
In the end, the choice of who we let guide, inspire, wound, change, and ultimately have our hearts is up to us. If you are given the opportunity to just sit and listen to someone cry, know you are sharing a precious moment. If you are allowed to be in the presence of someone who is struggling with the circumstances that led to his or her broken heart, be sure to appreciate that person’s trust. If you are allowed to catch a few fallen tears and bind up a hurting heart, know you are being given a gift from God. These are the moments—raw, naked, and desperate—where lasting friendships and relationships are formed. These precious and rare moments are the makings of great men and women. I treasure the quiet nights when I’ve shared my room with a grieving soul, when I’ve sat in silence and listened to heart-wrenching sobs. I treasure the moments when I held my peace and just listened. In those moments— hard as they may be—I realize I would rather love too much than not enough.”
How is your heart?
“My name is Kylee and I am passionate about life. I am the oldest of 8 children and have the most amazing parents ever. I have one adorable niece and one adorable & squishy nephew. I grew up in Oregon, moved my senior year of high school to Utah, then moved to San Diego, Boston, and currently live in Arizona.
I went to BYU and got my BA in English (creative writing/Editing) and a minor in Linguistics. I love words and writing! There is something very powerful in putting words together and expressing human emotions. I love poetry, reading great novels, blogging, etc. I have an old typewriter I adore and like to type out letters now and again and seal them with wax. I am an author and avid reader. I love learning new words and can trace that back to my mom who has the most amazing vocabulary.
I also attended ASU and got my Masters in Social Work (emphasis in child & family therapy). I have always been drawn to the “punk kids” and absolutely love my job. I work as a Shadow (family therapist) at The Anasazi Foundation. I get to do therapy with amazing adolescents out in the deserts of Arizona. My office is on the trail and I get to throw rocks, hear hearts, and get to know some incredible kids from all over. Not bad for a day job!
When I am not with my family, hanging out with my friends, or working I absolutely love to travel. I have been to Egypt, Ghana, Italy, Mexico, Canada, Ireland, Scotland, and almost all 50 of the states. I love music–singing, writing songs, playing the piano, and listening to other musicians. I co founded a Musical Fireside group that is in the process of becoming a non-profit. I have loved watching INSPIRE: music. service.hope grow and touch the hearts of those who hear us sing.
I am a huge Avengers fan (Captain America), I like straws, bridges, swinging on swings, and trains.
I love God and try to recognize His presence in my life. For Him I am indebted for my many blessings and tender mercies. All that I have and am is because of Him.”
Social Networking Links:
As part of the tour, Kylee is offering 4 amazing giveaways!! These include a $25 gift card to Amazon, a $25 gift card to Target, and a hard copy and ebook copy of the book.
To enter to win these prizes, simply fill out the Rafflecopter form below.
- Open from January 8 to January 31.
- Must be 13+ years of age to enter
a Rafflecopter giveaway