One of the themes that has been a big part of my work in the world in the last decade is the concept of resilience. This can be a very complicated topic when applied to business, communities and of course life. I had intended to start the new year’s author focus with a “serious” book about sustainability or resilience.
While I was surviving the arctic vortex that hit Chicago over the Christmas holidays, I instead found myself reading a different kind of book on the resilience of the human spirit, and a hilarious one at that. The latest Bridget Jones book by Helen Fielding shows us how ridiculous (and heartbreaking) our paths towards personal resilience can be.
Maybe it’s because Bridget is now the same age that I am, but I find her more compelling than ever, and inspiring in many ways. In Bridget Jones, Mad About the Boy, Bridget is widowed and beginning to reclaim her life while raising young children. Bridget decides to become a screenwriter, and somehow finds a production company willi<ng to make her oddball idea of an into a movie. Her mishaps in her new career as a writer, raising her children, and creating a life for herself are often hilarious. I found myself laughing out loud so many times as I was reading this book.
Fielding is an ingenious writer who manages to slyly comment on our celebrity obsessed culture, social media, and the many ways we keep ourselves from seeing the truth about ourselves and our world. She takes Bridget on a journey of self-improvement that so many of us are trying to do, especially around this time of year. As strange as it may seem, Bridget Jones might just inspire you to make some changes in 2014.
When you see a character as hapless as Bridget using all the resilience she has, you realize that this is the journey that we all must take. Most of the time we don’t really know what we’re doing. We all want to be accepted, loved and appreciated. And just sometimes when we least expect it love and success finds us, and makes life more bearable. Perhaps, nothing is more resilient in the human spirit than our ability to laugh at ourselves.
If you’re looking for a good laugh to start out the year, take a look at Fielding’s latest book.