Author of the week
Sheryl Sandberg has found a way to turn personal tragedy into a new mission, said Belinda Luscombe in Time. Two years ago, the Facebook COO and best-selling author of Lean In was vacationing in Mexico when her husband, a seemingly healthy 47-year-old, died of a heart attack in the resort’s gym. Sandberg, who had made herself an unlikely self-help guru by insisting that women own and act on their ambition, suddenly was a 45-yearold single parent overcome by grief and robbed of confidence at a time when she and her two school-age children most needed her to have it. “It just kind of crumbled in every area,” she says. “I didn’t think I could be a good friend. I didn’t feel like I could do my job.” This time, being ambitious wasn’t going to help.
In her new book, Option B, Sandberg attempts to teach readers how best to endure catastrophe and even how to grow from it, said Decca Aitkenhead in TheGuardian.com. Crucially, she brushes past none of the pain, instead naming the emotional hurdles that have to be overcome— including self-blame and the feeling that the grief should go uninterru pted by happiness. Sandberg made lists each night of three small moments of joy, and three things she did well, including at Facebook headquarters. “It really does work,” she says. “And everyone I know who’s tried it since then has told me it works.” Over time, she’s gotten far better at creating and cherishing happy moments. She’d still rather have her husband back than have grown in that way. “But the deeper sense of meaning, gratitude, purpose,” she says, “those are wonderful things.” ■