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Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  40,120 ratings  ·  3,340 reviews
From Facebook's COO and Wharton's top-rated professor, the #1 New York Times best-selling authors of Lean In and Originals: a powerful, inspiring, and practical book about building resilience and moving forward after life's inevitable setbacks.

After the sudden death of her husband, Sheryl Sandberg felt certain that she and her children would never feel pure joy again. "I
Paperback, 240 pages
Published April 24th 2017 by WH Allen
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Leslie Yes. She states that she is donating the proceeds to, a nonprofit initiative to help people build resilience and find meaning in the face…moreYes. She states that she is donating the proceeds to, a nonprofit initiative to help people build resilience and find meaning in the face of adversity. It is on the back flap of the book. (less)

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Rebecca Eisenberg
May 11, 2017 rated it did not like it
Sheryl Sandberg lost her husband, and that is very sad, and is a tragedy that no one deserves. Also, SS learned how to gain resilience and re-find joy, which is fantastic, and I know we all wish for her. That said, the advice she offers in this book does not seem relevant or helpful to almost anyone but Sheryl Sandberg (with the possible exception of other billionaire celebrities with limitless job security and financial resources). For example, in this book, SS recommends the following:

1. It's
Brenda -Traveling Sister
Jun 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
Ok I didn't quite get through this one before it disappeared from my IPad but I did get through most of it.

I found the book to be helpful with good insight not only for someone grieving a loss but also for anyone who is suffering from or have a loved one suffering from a serious illness, or experience some trauma. I also think it would be helpful to anyone who wants to understand how someone who is grieving feels and how you could help them with their grief.
Diogenicus Maximus
May 31, 2017 rated it did not like it
It’s rude to criticize grieving widows. Maybe it’s even mean or cruel, and a boiling cauldron awaits me in Hell. But Sheryl Sandberg’s new book, Option B, is hard to take seriously, especially for those of us who are not multi-millionaires and have lost a spouse and been left alone caring for young children.

Many glowing reviews have been written about Option B, but few reviews mention the glaring inadequacies of this book. This is probably out of sympathy for the author. Or perhaps fear of
Abel Keogh
Apr 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I’m honored to be a small part of Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant’s new book Option B. (See page 164.) The message of the book is one that everyone can benefit and learn from: We are stronger and more resilient than we think. We not only have the ability to cope with devastating life events but can rediscover joy and find greater and deeper meaning and appreciation for life. It helps readers learn how to own situations instead of having situations own us.

Since many of my readers are widowers or
Carol (Bookaria)
Aug 24, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2017, non-fiction
The book narrates how Sheryl Sandberg, CEO of Facebook, has been able to cope with the sudden death of her beloved husband who passed away at a relatively young age leaving two young children behind.

The book not only explores her experience but also includes the advice she has received from numerous people, how it might be more difficult for certains group of people to be able to cope and get the help and support needed in this type of difficult moments, how other people have coped with
Jennifer Blankfein
May 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing

Sheryl Sandberg suffered a tragic and unthinkable loss when her husband died on vacation, and just like anyone else, she had to develop coping strategies and solutions to problems in order to work through her grief, comfort her children and get back to living. Her personal story is honest, devastating and inspiring as she, along with her friend and co-writer, Adam Grant, present a lot of great information and ideas for those who have experienced a loss, also providing advice and suggestions for
Richard Derus
Nov 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
It's #Booksgiving! Start getting your bookish friends their read on...especially valuable for your friend whose grief is still raw.

Sheryl Sandberg lost her husband before he was fifty. I lost mine when he was not quite 34. I connect with her pain on every imaginable level.

I also understand why she wrote this survivors' manual. She had to do something positive with her agony or it would sink her, and she was now a single mom. She couldn't afford the luxury of sinking because it would take her
Apr 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sheryl Sandberg, you simply understand. Thank you.

As a female who has worked in tech, specifically in social media, I must say, I lack investment in corporate life. I'm the one who wants to be the full-time wife...

And it is with that in mind that I must tell you, Sheryl Sandberg blew me away. While I could appreciate her earlier book, 'Lean In,' Option B was one of the most raw, gut wrenching reads I've had in some time. If there's anything she left out, I can't begin to fathom what that may be.
Jess Johnson
May 27, 2017 rated it liked it
This was interesting to read after 'Lean In.' In some ways, Sheryl is absolutely humbled by the tragedy that hit her family. She openly talks through the vulnerability and admits to a lot of the assumptions she made with 'Lean In' coming from a place of stability and privilege. I enjoy how she dips into the research on real techniques that help in very concrete ways.

That said, Sandberg still approaches things from privilege. In her worst moment, it took a village to raise her up (her family
May 14, 2017 rated it did not like it
A cathartic book for Sheryl but it doesn't give much constructive advice. Way too general.
MISA Thakur
Mar 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The best book I have come across on grieving and healing
Apr 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This one is a tear jerker - ugly criers be warned. Beyond the Instagram selfies and humble brag Facebook posts is a ton of grief in all of our lives that we do our best to hide from others. Option B uses Sheryl's tragedy to openly discuss trauma, it's impact, recovery, and post trauma growth in a tone free of pretension. I especially appreciated parts of the book that recommended actions to take to support a friend experiencing a loss of some kind. There's a lot of realness in this book. I'm ...more
I read the first three chapters and skimmed the rest. I remember hearing of Sandberg’s husband’s sudden death of cardiac arrhythmia while on an exercise machine in a Mexico hotel. (Elizabeth Alexander’s husband died in similar circumstances; she wrote about it in The Light of the World.) I think I expected this to be a straightforward bereavement memoir, when in fact it’s more of a self-help guide about developing resilience, whether or not you’re recovering from loss or trauma.

Sandberg co-wrote
Jul 16, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.0 Stars

I have such mixed feelings about this book. I’m glad I read it and encourage folks to give it a whirl if you can pick up a copy at your local library but from the very beginning, something felt off, not quite right.

But first let me express my sincere condolences to Sheryl Sandberg for the loss of her husband of eleven years. I can empathize with her intense sense of loss and grief. David Goldberg, a former Yahoo executive and at the time of his death CEO of SurveyMonkey, and Sandberg
Laura Noggle
Dec 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
3.5 Stars rounded up to 4, because it has a solid message and is widely applicable.

Resilience is the strength and speed of our response to adversity, and we can build it. It isn’t about having a backbone. It’s about strengthening the muscles around our backbone.
– Sheryl Sandberg

This book isn't just about bouncing back from a loved one's death — it's about moving forward and post traumatic growth. Essentially: Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you respond to it, with some science and
Lindsay Nixon
Facebook propoganda meets white billionaire privilege. Gross.

I feel sad for Sheryl Sandberg and her loss, but this book is TERRIBLE. Positioned as a self-help book, it's anything but helpful.

I agree with the negative reviews that this doesn't provide practical advice for ANYONE.

The most frustrating part is how blind she is to her billionaire white privilege. She weaves in all these statistics that show the grim reality of a lot of people but shows no compassion, offers no help, just, in the
Jul 21, 2017 rated it liked it
I have to give Sheryl Sandberg credit. The topic of this book is not an easy one to cover and let's be honest, the majority of authors that do pen such books related to rebounding from grief have some kind of educational background or job experience that gives them the authority to advise.

Sandberg uses her personal experience (the passing of her husband), to explain to readers that despite the pain and loss, happiness can still return (if allowed).
With the aid of her close friend, Adam Grant,
Daniel Clausen
Oct 28, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: books-of-2019
I love reading books about resilience. It's a subject I'm fascinated by. That being said, I found myself skimming chapters from this book and periodically losing my train of thought while reading this book. Part of the problem is that the book attempts to balance two different things. One, Ms. Sandberg tries to tell a very personal story of resilience around the loss of her husband; and two, the book tries to summarize various strands of research on resiliency and post-traumatic growth. These ...more
Dec 03, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio
2019 has been a bit of a taker, so this was a well-timed read for me. Although Sandberg's personal context is particular, there's a lot to take from this about what happens when Plan A fails. Sandberg's discussion of space, attitude, and patience real rang true for me. This was a timely reminder that our challenges, and traumas are PART of us but they are not us, and to be gentle with the people around us; we don't know what they're carrying around every day.
Jul 24, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
I’ve read some of the negative reviews of Sandberg’s books and I agree with them to a point. Sandberg does discuss how she personally handled the grief of losing a spouse, and she generalized her efforts to deal with the grief and moving on while remembering into advice for all. It’s that advice for all that was a bit off-putting, as Sandberg does live a blessed life in terms of personal finances and in terms of corporate power. Her circumstances in these areas are not generalizable to the ...more
Apr 26, 2017 rated it did not like it
Not all of the author's friends, coworkers, and acquaintances said the perfect things to her after her husband died. She remembered every transgression, and then wrote a book detailing them.

I was hoping that I would learn something about resilience from this book. Instead, after reading the author's judgements on all sorts of well-meaning reactions to her loss, I'm even more uncomfortable speaking to people who are grieving.
Apr 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: biography, feminism
I have not yet read Sandberg's popular book Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead, even though I have a copy on my book shelf. For some reason I previusly thought of Sandberg as one of those privileged women, one of the unique, and maybe not the voice to speak to me. Option B though shows us that Sandberg is not necessarily that privileged, as she suddenly is left a widow and single parent when her husband dies suddenly at a young age while on vacation with her in Mexico. Yes, she is ...more
Nov 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Not a self-help, but a sharing memoir walking through Sheryl Sandberg's own journey of recovery after the sudden death of her beloved husband, with references to all she learned was important at every step, and a whole lot of "this is all normal" stories of devastating losses (think you got it bad?). Surprisingly vulnerable for a public professional, and I liked that.

I liked the bit at the end where she got her hackles up because long-term mourning is a designated female thing, and society
Rachel (TheShadesofOrange)
May 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
4.0 Stars - Resilience has become my new word!
I'm normally not a self-help reader, but the message in this story really hit home for me. I highly recommend this one to anyone looking for the strength to persevere through the challenges parts of life.
Amir H
Nov 06, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: in-english
I chose this book because of my dark days after losing my dad last year.
I read the introduction and I found shared feeling with the author and I continue reading.

The book includes important knowledge about making resilience, however, I think it was not necessary a full book on it. The materials could be written as a long article not a book.

All in all, it is good to remind important things again here:

1- accept the loss and don't blame yourself for that
2- accept the sad feeling, and let it come
May 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
WOW. Reading "Option B" was such a gift. This book is going next to "When Bad Things Happen to Good People" on the shelf* for rough times in my own life and in the lives of those I love. I highly recommend this for those who are navigating a tough time--whether recent tragedy, or an ongoing crisis. As I finish this book today, I'm pregnant again after losing my first baby in a late-term miscarriage last summer. Reading this was uplifting, informative, and instructive for me as I try to develop ...more
Claire Lee
Apr 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Sheryl Sandberg, one of my idols, and Adam Grant, one of the best professors I had at Wharton, band together to write a book exploring how we can move forward and become resilient towards trauma in our lives. The balance of anecdotes, research, and even humor was perfect, as well as Sheryl's candid narrative about losing her husband Dave and coping.
Oct 09, 2017 rated it liked it
Really not fair to rate this book, simply this is not my book of choice. Read this for neighborhood book club. It's not bad and was enlightening.
May 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
I walked into this book knowing who Sheryl Sandberg was, but without honestly knowing the tragic events that led up to her writing this book. So for me, it was a huge surprise. As some of the other reviewers have noted, many of the concepts she touches on learning and adapting are seemingly basic, however—all of the best ways to help yourself during tragedy usually are. It's having the strength to apply those basics in the moment of tragedy that's the hardest part. Sheryl's honesty is really the ...more
May 31, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2017
This is a short book on handling grief, or as the author calls it "Option B". That's the plan you have to go with when life takes you off course and on a new path. Sheryl Sandberg is an executive at Facebook and was on a vacation in Mexico with her husband Dave, and their friends. Dave died on that trip while working out at the resort gym. It was completely unexpected. This started Sheryl and her two children on their path down Option B. This book covers the uncomfortable situations that she ...more
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SHERYL SANDBERG is chief operating officer at Facebook, overseeing the firm's business operations. Prior to Facebook, Sheryl was vice president of Global Online Sales and Operations at Google, chief of staff for the United States Treasury Department under President Clinton, a management consultant with McKinsey & Company, and an economist with the World Bank.

Sheryl received a BA summa cum
“Option A is not available. so let's just kick the shit out of Option B."

Life is never perfect. We all live some form of Option B.”
“Let me fall if I must fall. The one I become will catch me.” Slowly,” 47 likes
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