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Reviewed by Tammy Ruggles for Readers' Favorite
Observe to Unmask: 100 Small Things to Know People Better by Pushpendra Mehta is a brief but inspiring self-help guide to help you better understand others. What started as a question the author posed on Quora turned out to be the foundation of this book. In an easy, straightforward manner, Mehta offers 100 small things inspired by the Quora answers that can tell you a lot about a person. The book starts with the author explaining that the more sensitive you are to people and their behaviors, even the small ones, the more you can understand them, and the more empathetic you can be. He says direct observation is the key to better interpersonal communication, and that you can train yourself to pick up on the subtle, often unspoken hints people convey about themselves through mannerisms, social media posts, and what they DON'T say.
It takes the skill of studied observation to unmask a person to find out what they're really like, but this skill can be learned. For example, if someone talks about a friend behind his/her back, you doubt that they can be trusted. But if a person asks questions that promote learning or growing, this is an insightful person. Mehta covers other topics in the book, like money and what it means to people, what social media posts can say about a person, and what a sense of humor says about you. The information the author presents isn't entirely new, but it's nice to have in one book and is perfect for a new generation who may be unfamiliar with the simple, yet profound ways of reading people (like body language), and perhaps even their motivations. The book shows what basic humanity and decency should look like: Listening to others, being sympathetic, showing respect for elders, and more; even how to discern whether a spiritual leader is authentic or self-serving. Observe to Unmask: 100 Small Things to Know People Better by Pushpendra Mehta is a tidy little book with big, helpful insights into the human heart and psyche.