Sunday, July 31, 2005

Book Review: No-Limit Life by Charlie Shoten

I first met Charlie Shoten at Sam's Town casino in Las Vegas last December, at a breakfast "meet and greet" before the first WPBT live tournament. Charlie was scheduled to speak about his upcoming book No-Limit Life. He offered insight into his Ten Commitments along with suggestions on how to eliminate Thought Terrorists (TT) out of your life. Since that day, I had been waiting for his book to come out. I'm an avid reader and was eager to read about Charlie's thoughts on life and how it specifically applies to your poker game.

During the last two months while living in Las Vegas, I've had the opportunity to engage in several inspiring conversations with Charlie Shoten. I'd catch him in the hallways at the Rio during the World Series of Poker or I'd stop by his booth at the Poker Expo. Most recently, I've been running into him at the Bellagio where you can often find him playing in their daily tournaments. We chatted about many different things. He gave me tips on improving my tournament game. We discussed his book and the intricacies of getting it published. And most importantly we spoke about personal freedom, a subject that intrigues me the most as a writer.

Now that the WSOP is finally over, I can take the time to tell you about Charlie's Shoten book No-Limit Life. You need to add this book to your poker library. It's always refreshing to read a book that focuses on subjects that are not just about poker. Charlie wrote a series of articles for Poker Player Newspaper and the feedback from readers was so overwhelmingly positive that he expanded the concept of those articles into No-Limit Life.

Charlie Shoten shares with you some of his own personal philosophy and how if applied, you can improve both your life and your poker. No-Limit Life is a book that would be great for poker players of any skill level. I personally enjoyed his astute advice on being less of what we are not and discovering personal freedom to find a release of my inherent creativity.

The design of the book is very cool. The quality of paper used is top notch. The pictures are outstanding. Several of them were taken by Flip Chip. And even pictures some of your favorite bloggers (G Rob, F Train, Daddy, Felicia, and the Poker Prof) are in Charlie's book, including yours truly on Page 191. On almost every page there are boxed quotes from both Charlie and a selection of great minds including William Shakespeare, Albert Einstein, Alfred Tennyson, Winston Churchill, and Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. There are small illustrations sprinkled throughout the book where you get to see the cartoon version of Charlie Shoten. On the margin of every left page, he lists keywords for his Ten Commitments:
1. Attitude
2. Focus
3. Notice
4. Intentions
5. Trust
6. Appear
7. Outcome
8. Forgiveness
9. Notice
10. Gratitude
Charlie spends a lot of time discussing his "Sixth Commitment" which is: I am calm, confident, and clear, and I wait for my best choice to appear. This is advice that you can apply to your life whether you are seated at a poker table or in a business meeting. I've found myself repeating Charlie's Sixth Commitment to settle down while I was on the verge of tilt during my last bad poker session.

Plenty of pros have read and embraced Charlie's book as well. Included in No-Limit Life are commentaries from notable pros who enjoyed Charlie's book such as Vince Burgio, Scotty Nguyen, Men the Master, Carlos Mortensen, and Miami John Cernuto. Even WPT founder Lyle Berman purchased twelve books so he could give them to his friends. You can see a picture of Lyle Berman reading Charlie's Book here. It was taken during the WSOP by Flip Chip.

Charlie autographs his book for James Woods

Since his book has been published, Charlie has shown me some of the glowing emails and letters he's gotten. Here's a sample of what readers have been saying about No-Limit Life:
"You are far more than a poker player and I commend you for your work. You are teaching people to guide themselves, and that's the greatest gift a leader can give."

"Not all can say what they mean and mean what they say! The real task is to of course practice what you have taught in No-Limit Life."

"Your book has altered my perceptions so drastically, that now I can better handle the stress of professional poker. Thanks for changing my life."

"Your book gave me the knowledge and map I needed to have the courage to deal with my negative outlook on life. I have turned my future into something positive. The pages of the book were filled with an abundance of wisdom from someone who has obviously 'been there.' I finally had the recipe to be myself and eliminate my Thought Terrorists. This has allowed me to be a better and happier person than I ever thought to be."
If you would like to order a copy of No-Limit Life, simply download and mail in the order form. (PDF Document)

NOTE: If you're having difficulty downloading the above order please download the latest copy of Adobe Acrobat Reader.

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You should be reading... Charlie's Corner over at Las Vegas and Poker blog.

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