For a long time, my standard for this type of book has always been Christopher Gardner’s “The Pursuit of Happyness.” Although the movie gives you a brief glimpse into this motivational story, it is his book that really shows you what Gardner really struggled through to reach the level of success he reached.
Gardner’s book will make you laugh, and you’ll cry too, but he somehow manages to dull the pain and struggle he suffered. You are a spectator, but you don’t feel it the way he did.
This book, 180 Degrees, by Robert R., is different. Robert R. drags you to the edge of the cliff and makes you walk with him. You don’t just feel like a spectator. Instead, you’re there, and it’s more ugly than you can imagine.
When I was asked to review this book, I was a little hesitant. Does the world really need another inspirational or autobiographical book? I’ve read so many of these over the years while walking my own path of personal growth. I’m glad I did though.
Robert R. offers another important and profound difference here that makes this book far more edgy and makes you want to know his story. Not only does he end up homeless like Gardner did, but he also struggles through drug addiction and the pain of escaping a lifestyle that few will ever get out of.
We begin at the beginning, at least sort of: around the time when Robert R. is between six and eight years old. He engages in cutting, a practice that will leave him with scars for the rest of his life. It doesn’t get any better either, as, by the time he is 14 years old, he’s dealing drugs and doing “the hard stuff”: cocaine, acid, etc. The spiral continues as he ends up homeless and broken. Eventually he escapes this lifestyle, and over a period of about 10 years, becomes a millionaire at 30 years old.
Although this is an incredibly amazing story, it is so much more. Robert R. doesn’t just tell you his story. He tells you how he escaped and how you can too. You also learn all about the resources he used to clean up his life and get sober and whole. Far beyond any faith, philosophy, or recovery program, you discover everything you need to know to recover. This book includes an extensive reading list as well as organizations where you can get help not just for your addictions but so that you can move on and build prosperity and abundance in every area of your life.
I recommend this book not just for those who are suffering from addiction and don’t see any way out. I also recommend it to those who love addicts. It’s a rare glimpse into the mind of an addict. It will leave you stunned, as if you had just watched a train wreck, but you’ll find hope and healing too. Read every word. You won’t want to miss any of it.