The Element Book Summary - The Element Book explained in key points
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The Element summary

Ken Robinson, with Lou Aronica

How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything

4.1 (138 ratings)
13 mins

Brief summary

The Element by Ken Robinson and Lou Aronica is a book that encourages readers to find their passion and pursue a career that aligns with their innate talents and interests. It emphasizes the importance of creativity and offers inspiring examples of individuals who have found their "element."

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    The Element
    Summary of 6 key ideas

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    Key idea 1 of 6

    Your element has two important features: aptitude and passion.

    You’ve probably heard people talk about “being in their element” when referring to a sense of fulfillment and connection with their true identity and purpose. It sounds great, but how can you find that place for yourself?

    Well, the truth is there’s no single route to get there. But by learning the main characteristics that define the element, you can begin to determine what it means for you. The first of these characteristics is aptitude.

    Aptitude is what most people call “talent.” It’s the natural and intuitive ability to accomplish something. However, there are limits to how far aptitude can get you.

    For instance, you could have an aptitude for anything from software development to poetry to playing the violin. Maybe you have a voice perfectly suited for opera, or for radio – that’s aptitude.

    But aptitude isn’t enough. You also need passion. After all, you can do something with extreme proficiency and still not feel moved by it. Being in your element requires feeling a certain pleasure and delight in what you’re doing. This kind of passion will keep you practicing for hours and loving every minute of it.

    Just take Charles, the keyboard player in the author’s brother’s former band. One night after a show, the author told Charles how well he had played and how much he himself loved playing keyboard. Charles responded by saying that the author didn’t actually love it, because, if he did, he would be doing it.

    Charles practiced several hours a day. Not because anyone was forcing him to, but because that’s what he wanted to do. In other words, playing the keyboard was his passion.

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    What is The Element about?

    The Element (2009) is about getting in the zone and unearthing exactly what drives you. That driver is your element and these blinks explain precisely what it is, how to identify it and what it will mean for your life.

    The Element Review

    The Element (2009) by Ken Robinson, with Lou Aronica, explores the concept of finding one's passion and potential in order to lead a fulfilling life. Here's why this book is worth reading:

    • It offers a fresh perspective on education and career choices, encouraging readers to think outside the box and discover their true talents.
    • Through compelling stories and examples, it showcases the transformative power of pursuing one's passions and how it can lead to personal and professional success.
    • This book inspires and motivates by demonstrating that it's never too late to find your element and live a life filled with purpose and joy.

    Best quote from The Element

    ...it is difficult to feel accomplished when youre not accomplishing something that matters to you.

    —Ken Robinson, with Lou Aronica
    example alt text

    Who should read The Element?

    • Dreamers who want to become doers
    • People who want to follow their calling
    • Bewildered parents of talented children

    About the Author

    Ken Robinson is a renowned British thinker on education, creativity and innovation. He is Professor Emeritus at the University of Warwick, a frequent speaker and award-winning writer of, among other books, Creative Schools and Out of Our Minds: Learning to be Creative.

    Lou Aronica is a writer with a background in publishing and co-author of the best seller, The Culture Code.

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    The Element FAQs 

    What is the main message of The Element?

    The main message of The Element is that finding our true passion and potential is key to fulfillment and success.

    How long does it take to read The Element?

    The reading time for The Element varies, but it typically takes several hours. However, the Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is The Element a good book? Is it worth reading?

    The Element is a must-read. It offers valuable insights and practical guidance on discovering our true talents and finding personal and professional fulfillment.

    Who is the author of The Element?

    The authors of The Element are Ken Robinson and Lou Aronica.

    What to read after The Element?

    If you're wondering what to read next after The Element, here are some recommendations we suggest:
    • Finding Your Element by Ken Robinson
    • How Will You Measure Your Life? by Clayton M. Christensen
    • Less Doing, More Living by Ari Meisel
    • How to Do Nothing by Jenny Odell
    • Out of Our Minds by Ken Robinson
    • Super Human by Dave Asprey
    • From Strength to Strength by Arthur C. Brooks
    • The Success Principles by Jack Canfield
    • The 80/20 Principle by Richard Koch
    • How Not to Age by Michael Greger