Most of the time our efforts at transformation involve long and hard campaigns in which we are our own worst enemy. But there are other ways to approach change.

"Compassionate self-discipline is simply allowing the intelligence and generosity that is your authentic nature to guide you in every moment," writes Cheri Huber, a Zen teacher for more than 30 years and author of 18 self-published books. We love her down-to-earth and playful approach to the obstacles we put in our own way as we try to make sense of life and human relationships. Changing our ways means dealing with our conditioned mind — all the stuff we have been taught by our parents, celebrities, and popular culture. We then have to come to terms with those "subpersonalities" we have developed to adapt ourselves to society. Huber's include "a best friend, someone who is stubborn and tenacious, a soft-hearted marshmallow, an animal lover, a quick temper, crusader rabbit, champion of the underdog and many more!" Rather than ignoring them or trying to get rid of them, we can see them as delightful companions who are really our children. They must be taken care of and looked after.

This is not a book about self-improvement: it is a pep talk by an enthusiastic cheerleader who encourages us to become all we were meant to be.