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Summary

Inspiring, personal, and often spiritual reflections on how women can find peace, make wise choices, practice joy, and step into their power from Geneen Roth - author of the number one New York Times best-selling Women Food and God

From the beginning, Geneen Roth was told she was too sensitive, too emotional, too curious, too demanding, too intense, and too big. Yet gaining and losing weight for decades did not improve her self-worth or reduce other people's criticisms. Like most women who struggle with their weight, she believed that if she could resolve what seemed to be the source of her self-hatred - how and what she ate - she would be thin, happy, and free. That belief, she discovered, was false. 

When her misery with food ended - and didn't change anything except the size of her thighs - she kept trying to fix other broken parts of herself with therapy, intensive meditation retreats, and rigorous spiritual practices. Yet it was only when Geneen stopped trying to change or fix herself that she was at last able to feel at home in her mind, body, and life. Now, she shares the wisdom of giving up this project and finding the freedom, peace, and wholeness that await us just beyond it. 

With humor, compassion, and insight, This Messy Magnificent Life explores the personal beliefs, hidden traumas, and social pressures that shape not just women's feelings about their bodies but also their confidence, choices, and relationships. This provocative, enchanting, and sometimes laugh-out-loud look at the imperfect path women take to step into their own power, presence, and ownership is based on the author's personal journey and her decades of work with thousands of women around the country. 

Roth embraces everyone's unique and often unsung potential and shows us how to be open, curious, and kind with ourselves; how to say no to people and ideas that hold us back; how to let go of grudges and anxieties; how to pick ourselves up after setbacks; how to say a resounding yes to the world; how to move from fixing ourselves to finding ourselves; how to find joy in the ordinary; and how to experience the extraordinary right here and now in our bodies. 

With a foreword by Anne Lamott, This Messy Magnificent Life is a compelling and often quirky look at what it means to be an imperfect but unapologetic woman living a (mostly) magnificent life. 

©2018 Geneen Roth (P)2018 Simon & Schuster Audio

What listeners say about This Messy Magnificent Life

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Mind blowing

I loved everything about this book. Loved Geneens honesty about the workings of her mind.Learned some life changing lessons!! A must listen!

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A wonderful insightful read

Another great book from Gineen who writes with such authenticity and from the heart. Dont bother with another diet book - read this instead

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A book as real and wonderful as it’s author

Geneen I have loved all your books, and this one was no exception. Your warmth, honesty and loveliness shines through your words and makes me feel like maybe underneath I’m not broken, even when I feel like I am, your books bring me back home and I remember that there is hope. Please never stop writing! I pre ordered ‘This Messy Magnificent Life’ for my mum too because I want more people to know what you know. Thank you x x Kirsty x x

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  • Nishna-botna
  • 08-03-18

Further Along the Path

Where does This Messy Magnificent Life rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Geneen Roth talks about food but more importantly she talks about life. She encourages women to be their own authority in their life. This book guides the listener to quit paying attention to her inner critic (aka: crazy aunt in the attic) and do what is right for herself. Stop the self improvement, stop dieting, stop following other people’s rules, and live your own life. She ends the book with touchstones to guide the listener to be present in her life.

7 people found this helpful

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  • River Holmes-miller
  • 18-03-18

A rehash of earlier works...nothing new here

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

i am a fan of Geneen Roth, but I felt like 90 percent of the stories in this book involve situations she has written about many times before, in the exact same way. There is always a time when an author who mines his/her own life to the degree that Roth has (I am also thinking of Anne Lamott, Auguster Burroughs, and David Sedariis here), becomes repetitive. This is that book for Geneen Roth.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

Her pace is a bit slow and deliberate, a little too theatrical for my taste. She is someone who appears to take herself quite seriously...nothing wrong with that, but she brings the same weight to every subject, which can grow tiresome.

Any additional comments?

If you are new to Roth, there is probably plenty here to chew on. But if, like me, you are familiar with her work, then feel free to skip this one. You won't be missing anything new.

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  • IV Whitman
  • 16-03-18

So good!!

This book is like a meditation. Full of wisdom, humor and truth. I both laughed and cringed at some of her insights, seeing myself in them. I will read this book again and again.

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  • Sally Faulk
  • 07-03-18

To me messy means delicious!

I totally enjoyed this book. It had even more impact hearing it in the author's own voice. Highly recommend being in the moment and soaking it all in!

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  • Chelsea Obrien
  • 17-04-21

Lovely to hear Geneen reading her words.

Listening to the author read her experiences of taking back her life from her mind was a special and beautiful way to experience this book.

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  • Theresa Dambrose
  • 24-02-21

A must read as always, thank you Geneen.

It’s a message we cannot hear enough, but Geneen‘s ability to articulate, describe, and bring her gift of writing and truth into the explanation is a dialect and language my heart understands.

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  • Lela
  • 11-02-21

came at the right time

Just when I was ready to call the doc for meds, again, Geneen came back into my 78 year life and brought some keys to self acceptance and joy.
On my way out to watch my beautiful dog play in the snow!

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  • Jackie
  • 14-05-19

Everyone needs this book

This book is an absolute necessity. Seemed like a reflection in my diary. It was wonderful for daily personal development. I enjoyed it a lot. I shared it with all of my friends. They are enjoying it too.

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  • KD
  • 06-01-19

Wise but scattered

Beautiful, gentle reading dotted with notable pearls but generally scattered without a thread to lead us through.

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  • Chatty Kathy
  • 12-12-18

great food for thought!!

really enjoy all Geneens books. She is SO positive and really helps you look at things differently. I'll listen to it again.