Option B is a collaborative book co-authored by Sheryl Sandberg, the former COO of Meta/Facebook, and Adam Grant. The book is structured in a unique way, with Sheryl sharing her personal story in the first person, while Adam is referred to in the third person.
Coping with Loss: Sheryl Sandberg’s Personal Journey
The book chronicles Sheryl’s journey of coping with the sudden loss of her husband, Dave Goldberg, due to cardiac arrest during their trip to Mexico in 2015. Through her experience, the book highlights how life can take unexpected turns and provides insights on how to build resilience and find hope during difficult times.
Building Resilience & Recognizing Privilege: Insights and Lessons Learned
The book centers around the topic of resilience and how it is often easy to take things for granted in life. For instance, we may wish loved ones on special occasions like Father’s Day and Mother’s Day, yet fail to recognize those who do not have parents. The authors, Sheryl and Adam, highlight that losing a parent may seem like a difficult situation for children, but research has shown that they often develop resilience and go on to achieve success. Sheryl also discusses the support she received from both family and finances after her husband’s passing, acknowledging that not everyone may have access to such resources.
The Power of Resilience: The Story of the Uruguay-Chile Plane Crash
The book also shares the story of the Uruguay-Chile Plane Crash (Air Force flight 571), where 16 people survived. The passengers who survived had to go through extreme hardships for 72 days. They survived extreme weather conditions, starvation, and more. The surviving passengers during those 72 days also had to eat the flesh of some dead passengers. The surviving passengers still meet as a group every year. This is a story of resilience.
Embracing Failure & Moving Forward: Discussing Mistakes and Learning from Them
Sheryl also emphasizes the significance of openly discussing failures rather than just successes. She believes that such discussions will encourage individuals to try new things and not fear failure. Towards the end of the book, she delves into her personal life and talks about her experience with dating again. Sheryl also sheds light on the societal double standards in the way men and women are treated after losing their spouses. She candidly shares her own dating experiences and how they shaped her perspective. Sheryl is now married to Tom Bernthal.
My Take on the Book
This book will be a comforting read to someone who has lost their loved one or their better half. This is not a business book. However more about a story of how Sheryl Sandberg and her family built resilience after losing her husband Dave Goldberg.