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The Fire Starter Sessions: A Soulful + Practical Guide to Creating Success on Your Own Terms
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The Fire Starter Sessions: A Soulful + Practical Guide to Creating Success on Your Own Terms

4.18 of 5 stars 4.18  ·  rating details  ·  1,266 ratings  ·  141 reviews
The Fire Starter Sessions is an apathy-kicking, integrity-infusing guide to defining success on your own terms.

As the creator of “the best place online for kick-ass spirituality,” Danielle LaPorte’s straight-talk life-and-livelihood sermons have been read by over one million people. Bold but empathetic, she reframes popular self-help and succ
Hardcover, 368 pages
Published April 17th 2012 by Harmony (first published January 1st 2012)
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Bri Saussy
Though I love Danielle LaPorte's web presence and overall attitude, I was not sure how I would enjoy FSS because I had already purchased and worked through the digital version of the program (that is no longer available btw) about a year ago. I expected to get a lot of the same information, same worksheets, and same overall feel from the book as I had from the program-and to some extent that was the case. With that said, I LOVED the book and am so glad that I bought it. First off, its purty. Eve ...more
I read about this book from a blog somewhere which directed me to her website at From there I went to and bought the Kindle version immediately. As I began to read just the first few pages, I knew this was more than just a read. So, I went to and downloaded the audio version read by Danielle, and as it is done when I want to pour a book over myself and let it have its way with me, I listen and read in synch to get a fuller version.

I am delighted to
I'll start this review with the disclaimer that I did very few of the sessions that Laporte suggested in the book so I can't speak as to their effectiveness overall, though my sister spoke of them positively.

This book is part self-help, part affirmation, and part guide to personal soul searching. There are definitely some valuable ideas and questions to be found within it. My personal favourite was "How do you want to feel?" which is posed to be a alternative to setting specific goals. Rather t
A.E. Shaw

So, I read a lot of 'things like this', of the motivational, you can do anything, sort of thing, and the nice thing with this is that Laporte has also read these, thus her content is both summarising and expanding upon and adding to many things with which I was already familiar.

It's firm, but kind, inspirational and peppered with just enough practical suggestions and questions to ask yourself. I particularly like that it draws on the ideas of being self-employed and self-sufficient as much as j
Damn, this book is good. I highly recommend it for anyone who is considering change, of any form. Not only do you feel driven to set out to conquer your dream, but you want to help others with theirs, too. Empowering, inspirational, I want to read a chapter every morning to get a kickstart.
Miranda Hersey
A must-read for any creative entrepreneur.
I've been a big fan of Danielle's for a while now, having followed her on, then on to her new site, I had bought the digital version of this book (called the Spark Kit back then, now since retired) last summer, and devoured it. So when I went ahead preordered the hardcover, all I was expecting was pretty much a paper version of what I had already bought.

Boy, was I wrong.

The Fire Starter Sessions delivers the same message that the Spark Kit did, a message ab
Rebecca Waring-Crane
Timing. Is. Everything. Just one chapter into this library copy convinced me that I must own it. As I transition from traditional work to that of a self-employed artist, Danielle's voice gives me perspective and hope, while asking questions that show me how much I already know. Nothing woo-woo about it with ideas that zing on every page -- quotes from others and original gems from Danielle.

"Your most valuable currency is what comes most naturally to you."
"Being well-rounded is highly overrated.
Disappointing Danielle is great as a blogger but it is challenging to give much credence to a book that is so poorly written and edited. My 16 year old niece could have done a better job stringing together pithy comments and real world insights for a high school social studies class and I didn't make it past the second chapter.
Oh, so that's what a life coach does! I had wondered. Laporte takes her varied life experiences, including running a think tank, starting companies, being a Mom, attending a White House function with purple hair highlights, as well as readings from a variety of self-help books, poetry, song lyrics, and more, and provides exercises to help the reader live life to the fullest. I liked the references to a variety of sources and the worksheets she provided, and although they mostly felt familiar tha ...more
This collection of essays and worksheets is designed to spark introspection and action in pursuit of your vocation, art or higher purpose, and it does so with contagious joy, humor, passion and wonder. It's not blandly self-helpy but it's definitely motivational in the self-help style. LaPorte is unabashedly over-the-top enthusiastic and resolutely anti-cynical; in the best way, for this reader. I look forward to going back to it for thoughts and exercises over and over again, when I feel emotio ...more
Petula Darling
Making it through the cringe-worthy writing proved to be very challenging, so I decided to take the author's advice to not do anything hard and I stopped trying.
This is like 'artist's way' for new yorkers. It reminds me of Julia Cameron a lot, but coming from a completely different angle, hooked up to a completely different power supply, for a completely different audience. Laporte hails from the 'Jack Kerouac' school of beat poetry style motivation, which isn't a bad thing. But I am vaguely dissatisfied with it, which is simply a personal reaction. I'm sure it would speak volumes to others.
Vmichelle Skinner
So this is a brilliant book, but it wasn't what I was expecting. It's directed at business, entrepreneurs, career, etc, but you can take the ideas and apply them to your life in general, even if you're a stay at home mom (ahem). For some reason I was expecting it to be a tight process you go through where you come out at the end with some direction and guidance - more like a business plan. What this actually is, is a series of essays and brainstorming sessions. Each one gives you insight and dir ...more
Jess Macallan
Holy cow, this book is amazing! Danielle Laporte offers quick-witted inspiration, with straight talk, eye-opening exercises, and a healthy dose of quotes and comments you'll be tempted to highlight (though the book's so pretty, you just might have to resist). This book is a game-changer for anyone who's ever asked, "What am I supposed to do with my life?"

I highly, HIGHLY recommend this book!
Rachel Dixon
Fantastic read for those of us who need a push. I quite honestly laughed and cried. The layout is gorgeous. The advice is easy and perhaps that which has been read before, but organized brilliantly. Recommended if you are on the verge of something big and need a bit of a workbook to figure out what that thing is or how to do it.
Jun 09, 2014 Sarah rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2014
I had to power through this book as it was due back to the library and I was all out of renewals. It's definitely a book I wish I had more time to sit down and really think through. It's full of good exercises to get you thinking and motivated about your future. Some of it is definitely new age-y, pseudo-philosophical/spiritual type stuff that borders on ridiculous at times. That being said, the principles are really worth considering, and I think it's an especially good book for people with ple ...more
Fantastic! My first audio book and loved it. Will probably get a hard copy of this book in the near future.
Kay H.
The Fire Starter Sessions is difficult to rate because I only took one or two things away from it.

The biggest takeaway for me was the idea of working toward feeling a certain way. For example, I feel good when I feel strong--not just physically, but emotionally, mentally, financially, etc. According to Danielle LaPorte, I should be setting goals that will lead me toward feeling strong.

I had never thought of goal-setting this way, but it makes sense. Really, when we aim to improve ourselves or ou
Sep 06, 2012 Quincy marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biz-reads
From The Daily Muse:
If you’ve been waiting for the go-ahead to pursue your next project, your red-hot permission slip just got delivered. LaPorte doles out 16 beautifully designed sessions chock-full of motivated goodness. Nothing preachy or perfectionist about it, but don’t be fooled: Her passion will grab you by the shoulders and shake action out of you. Personal tales give the sessions texture and make LaPorte seem so relatable you’ll forget you’re not
I had high hopes for this book, but I don't think I am the type of person who would benefit from it. I was looking for something more directed, rather than a series of open ended though exercises (e.g., if you could have dinner with 5 people, who would they be and why?). I don't feel that answering those questions would really help me get anywhere. In addition, the author's style of writing (soul sister! yeah!) isn't really my cup of tea.
Janeen Herskovitz
Just finished this one...and loved it. Danielle's writing style is down to earth and real, which is very refreshing. She's a realist/cheerleader/zenmaster/bikerchick combo whose personality comes through on every page. Highly recommend for anyone looking for some motivation in their life and career.
Robyn J
I have to say that it was hard for me to read this book straight through. That may due more in part to my busy schedule than the layout of the book. I found the different type and layout of the chapters very interesting and attractive. The quotes were inspirational and when needed, I could look back and find or review information. Some of the information was not new, but presented in a new way so it made me think as I read the pages. I do like the approach, which gets right to the point. I think ...more
Lisa King
Okay. About five chapters in I almost gave up because there was a lot of flash but the substance seemed to be lacking. It was so highly recommended that I forced myself to finish the book. The ironic thing was that the author wrote that we shouldn't force ourselves to finish books we don't like. Ha ha!

I have tried to pinpoint what I don't like about this book. On the whole, it's not terrible but it's not good either. But why? It seemed to be too much fluff. Too much repetition. Too much other p
Oct 05, 2014 Ditte rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: i-own
Soms heel inspirerend, zeker in de eerste helft van het boek krijg je interessante/confronterende vragen voorgeschoteld over hoe je in je werkende leven staat. Maar vooral ook erg Amerikaans, en erg op zelfstandigen gericht, dus niet voor iedereen even relevant.
Just finished listening to the audio version if this and want to start again immediately. I'm inspired and excited about doing more and embracing more. More than a book, it's a guide to a better way of living
This book is a mix of serious business prompts, mixed with a little bit of the Artist way, mixed with a little bit of Attraction books (everything happens for a reason!). I love the fact it's not one of the thousand books about business -only- but also have some spiritual and creative prompts to work with - even if you don't have a career. (like me). I've found that some questions are quite confronting.. which is a good thing actually, if you want to know what you are doing and WHY you are doing ...more
Danielle Tortorici
Definitely more hit/miss than The Desire Map for me. The parts that resonated were like big a-ha lightbulb moments, but there were just as many as I could have left. I don't feel as inspired as I did with The Desire Map (which incidentally takes a lot of this info and rehashes it, somehow making it more palatable) but I don't feel like I wasted my tike reading it.
Lucille Zimmerman
I'm listening to this book on audio. I love the soulful way Danielle Laporte puts words together. She is quite a storyteller.

Warning, there is some rough language. She talks like people talk in real life. Her lessons are based on a life of tremendous experience, from writing white papers, working in a DC thinktank, and running a company with million dollar investors.

Danielle knows what she's talking about.

This book is like having a $1000/hour coach helping you decide what you want your life to
She presents some useful ideas and exercises, but the overall tone is a too inspirational and not practical enough for me. This one goes in the follow your passion category, and that just isn't resonating with me right now. didn't finish it.
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Danielle LaPorte is the creator of The Desire Map: A Guide To Creating Goals With Soul, author of the bestseller, The Fire Starter Sessions (with Random House/Crown), and co-creator of Your Big Beautiful Book Plan. An inspirational speaker, poet, former think tank exec and business strategist, she writes weekly at, where over a million visitors have gone for her straight-up adv ...more
More about Danielle LaPorte...
The Desire Map The Desire Map Experience: A Guide to Creating Goals with Soul Style Statement: Live By Your Own Design Your Big Beautiful Book Plan The Spark Kit

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“When you hang with your tribe, you feel invigorated, recognized, and understood—you can’t underestimate the powerful effects of being fortified in that way. When you have your tribe on speed dial, you’ve got all the resources you need to fuel up, fly straight, and head back out to face the world at large.” 2 likes
“If your goals aren’t synced with the substance of your heart, then achieving them won’t matter much.” 0 likes
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