Book Club – Short book “Fish”

First of all I would like to say that reading a book is not at all my cup of tea. I do read but its all abt art and design based articles or posts. I was supposed to facilitate Art and skils for support staff. And then due to this pandemic I was made to choose book club this year. I was very tensed how I will finish these many books.
But the book “Fish” really motivated me to read. I am surprised but happy at same time that I finished 1 book in a day with great support of the team.

Many times in life whether its work or at personal level we have to phase challenges. For that we need to choose appropriate attitude. Every time we dont have much choice in choosing the work or changing the situations but there’s always a choice to change your attitude. it takes lot of courage to bring change.
After harsh time of Mary Jane’s husband’s death and at the same time for survival with two children, her posting on third floor “toxic energy dump” at First Guarantee was very challenging.
She come across the Pike Place Fish Market. There she decided to change the reputation of her department. She took that risk and applied those philosophies for her and for the third floor.
Have faith and patience in whatever you do. As Lonnie mentioned, Pike Place Fish market didn’t start this way. They changed their attitude and they had faith in them selves and they achieved the result.
Playing at work will make our work easy. This energize the workplace. This also helps to reduce stress and get better outcome.
Being at present is very important. it will keep you connected with the customer And make relation with customer healthy. its also makes communication easy.
Making their day is keep them motivated. It also make them feel that they are important. Doing even small gestures like thank you, sorry, giving appreciations.

She helped her department to realize the actual problems and why they should be come out of their current mind set and think for their better future. After great efforts she successfully changed the Third floor from a “toxic Energy dump” to a healthy environment.

I also liked in the end the way Lonnie propose Mary Jane with the ring in the fish mouth. 🙂

I will recommend this book to others to read. It’s short but very helpful. This book changed my attitude towards reading as well. 🙂

– Aneri Desai

FISH! Book Club Reflection – 18th & 19th Sep, 2020

Reading is not something I willingly want to do so but I gave this challenge to myself by joining Book Club for this is years Life class. I was not sure but still wanted to give a chance to myself. It’s not that don’t read but its al related to the work I do. “Fish” is the first book that we were given which belongs to Self Help Genre.

There were many characters in the book except the main ones i.e. Mary Jane, recently widowed and mother of two, and Loonie, a fishmonger. The entire story revolves around them.

Most of the story is set around two places, First Guarantee where Mary Jane works and Pike Place, the fish market.

The story, in brief, is about the main character, Mary Jane Ramirez who is asked to engineer a turnaround of her company’s troubled operations department described by others as a “toxic energy dump” and “a bunch of losers”. She finds herself in a situation of “Fight or Flight” as she was given the responsibility of turning a chronically unenthusiastic and unhelpful department into an effective team which could be a nightmare to any person knowing the reputation of the department. At least that’s what she thinks until she stumbles upon the Pike Place Fish Market. There she learns the inspiring management philosophy that might change her life! She decides to fight to change the reputation of her department. By applying these very simple philosophies she made a great change for herself, for the people she worked with and worked for.

Choose Your Attitude: Choose how you respond to life, not just react, you must be intentional. When you get up, decide who you want to “be” today. Moment-to-moment awareness is key. Ask yourself throughout the day, “What is my attitude right now? Is it helping the people who depend on me? Is it helping me to be the most effective?”
Play: You can be serious about your work without taking yourself so seriously. It allows you to throw yourself with enthusiasm and creativity into whatever you are doing, in a way that is natural, not forced.
Be There: When your students/team members need you, they need all of you. Setting aside distractions and judgments to be mentally and emotionally present is a sign of respect. It improves communication and strengthens relationships.
Make Their Day: Simple gestures of thoughtfulness, thanks, and recognition make people feel appreciated and valued. When you make someone else feel good, you feel good too.

I feel all philosophies are important but the most important is changing your attitude because any change that you want to bring that starts with you first. The other is very simple one is that “treat others the way you want to be treated” and being there when one needs you or observing every minute details around you. All these ideas will not be very effective if working in isolation.

I was able to connect most of these things to the life classes that I attended earlier starting with 7 habits which say “Be proactive” is similar to “Choose your Attitude”. There is a connection between ” Seek first to understand then to be understood” with “Being there” or learning’s from the “Emotional Intelligence” workshop that is understanding and believing in others what they can do, be patient with your relationships, creating a sense of purpose, etc. I feel that Choose your attitude is also related to “Critical Thinking” in some ways when you question yourself to take charge of your life, questing your goals, adopting a growth mindset, and challenging your assumptions when It’s natural to assume the worst about other people’s motives and capabilities, especially if we don’t agree or connect positively with them. Another very simple yet powerful lesson is “you are not too aged to be childlike”

I definitely recommend this to others to read. It’s short but impactful. It refreshes those things which have in ourselves but at times forget in normal routine life. There are takeaways for teachers and other staff as well, important is to look for a connections!

Book Club- Short Books “FISH”

When thinking about reading, the first thought that comes in my mind is a sense of boredom as I am not a book lover at all. But to change this attitude towards the reading I Joined book club so I can change my thinking about the reading and can find if I really can develop an interest about books. To my surprise I found the book FISH very interesting to read and a kind of motivational book for me.

The way a women Mary Jane started her struggle in life after the sudden death of her husband and the progress of her in the Company First Guarantee, And a sudden unexpected change of her promotion is 3rd floor which is so called known as a “Toxic energy Dump” due to the environment there.

And from the real struggle to identify the actual identity of her own, Her own threats for the life after the death of her husband and to find a way to the fish market and meet Loonie who helped her to understand and change the “Toxic energy dump” environment to the pleasant work area where every one would love to work.

Loonie teaches her that a normal fish market works ca also be a pleasant work place by adding the play in the works. Making an office an adult playground most tedious jobs can also be interesting.

Along with Loonie She also help other team members to realize the actual problems and why they should be come out of the current mindset and think for a better future is required ad essential .

She successfully change the 3rd floor from a toxic Energy dump” to a healthy environment . This dramatic change also help me to understand my problems with the work environment ad lead me to a better solution which I personally can apply and bring positivity in my life.

FISH! A remarkable way to Boost Morale and Improve Results

This book has been written by Stephen C. Lundin, Harry Paul, and John Christensen. The purpose behind writing this book is to motivate all of those workers who find difficulty in leading their work and as well to make the work effective and qualitative. It shows the importance of a healthy environment at the workplace and how impactful it is on all the workers. The book is specially created for professional development but somehow the write up is connected to one’s personal life also. The character Mary Jane has been portrayed in such a way where her problems are just like any normal person’s problem. The way she had to take responsibility professionally to serve a need for her personal life is the scenario in many people’s life. We are doing things at a point in life for our responsibilities to be filled. The way she learned visiting the fish market about how your attitude towards your work can just change the way your work is something amazing. It all starts with your energy, willingness, positivity, your presence. Overall what matters is just your “attitude”.To bring the attitude one needs to work on own self. It is you who bring change in life. without courage, one can not achieve success. To bring the joy to your work you must believe, have the courage, and have a positive attitude in ownself.


-Vaidehi Shethji Gujarati.

Fish A parable encloses the treasure of resilience, sustainability , productivity, creativity and Innovation.


The name FISH co-authored  by Stephen C. Lundin, Ph.D., Harry Paul,
and John Christensen is inspired by the famous Pike Place Fish Market at Seattle. The fish market is cold , wet, dreary, stinky and dismal.Despite of the existing reality the fish mongers chose to convert this dreaded place with enthusiasm and energy by making it lively . The visit to this market place forces a smile on people after observing the way the fish market operates. The writer might have taken this as a premise and proposed 4 timeless philosophy to lead a successful team .1)Choosing your attitude: Fishmongers chose to be lively rather than grumpy.2) Play: Enthusiasm and energy are the end result of the playful attitude demonstrated by the fishmongers. The flamboyant attitude of fishmonger has transformed this place. 3)Marking the presence, being vigilant and observant about the customers needs and requirements and making them involved respectfully in the madness . 4)Making Someone’s Day: Giving a unique experience to the customers makes their day and they never forget the way they were dealt with . This enforces them to visit the place over and over again.

The businesswomen Mary Jane at First Guarantee Financial have been assigned the responsibilities to lead the operations of Third Floor of The First Guarantee Financial The third floor is viewed with dread and apprehension by the employees of the organization . They are also described as Zombies .It is labelled as the TOXIC ENERGY DUMP The presumptions turned out to be true when she took charge of the Third Floor Having known the existing reality of the third floor she is in the dire need to change the situation for the better. She wanted to transform the place for the betterment of herself and her subordinates. Her quest begins and the story unfolds as to how did she manage to bring into effect the changes which she once dreamt  for the Third Floor.

A short plot summary of the chapter/book

Choose your attitude , you don’t have much choice in choosing the work rather you have the choice to change your attitude. Also have faith in what you do . Not changing is rather more disastrous than fearing the consequences we might come across if we wish to change. Also being playful is what ensures liveliness, enthusiasm and immense energy.The fish market engages the customers respectfully and makes them a part of the madness going around the fish market . Making someone’s day is something which will unfold many aspects. BE PRESENT to the moment will help you be focused and serve the customers better. The quote in the book caught my attention. Past is a history , Future is a mystery and present is a gift hence the name present. The fourth philosophy is Make someone’s day . Try to provide helping hand to those in distress , lend an empathetic ear to their worries .Resolve the queries of the customers rather than making them toss from one counter to another without any intention to address their queries. After receiving the feedback as the zombies the third floor felt the need to be present to the customers needs. Also the conversation about eliminating that department and outsourcing it to the external company raised an alarming signal amidst the employees. The feeling of impediment , the job is adequate but does not extend to serve the external customers needs was obstructing the progress of Third Floor.The four philosophies mentioned seem as the bedrock to achieve the success in every responsibility we shoulder. Fish is the universal language which reinforces and taps the energy, enthusiasm , creativity and innovation hidden within each one of us.  

This book is a good read for everyone . The language is simple yet eloquent. The big idea is transferred successfully. Those who are not avid readers will not find burdensome to complete the book. The vivid illustrations and real life situations mentioned in the parable aids in comprehending the meaning and capture the true essence of the parable.


Kinjal Morkhia

Ravindra Agrawal – Reflection of the book “FISH” – Short Book Club.

Fish – A book is written by Stephen C. Lundin, Harry Paul and John Christensen.

The title was chosen because they were inspired by the world famous, “Pike Place Fish Market”.

The book is helpful to bring positive change, more energy, satisfaction for your job and help you love what you do.

I personally felt that it is helpful in both – “Our professional life and our personal life”. We can simply implement our key learning to all the aspects of our life.

My Key Takeaways –

1. I learned about choosing the right attitude for whatever we do. If a place like a fish market can become interesting and world famous then any other place can become famous and interesting to work provided that we choose the right attitude towards it. One more thing like in this book is that, “You can not always be doing what you love to do, but you can always love whatever you are doing”.

The four philosophies given in the book, “Choose your attitude, Play, Be Present, Make their day” are so wonderfully explained that anybody can easily understand the same and apply the same in their lives.

Choose your attitude – Past is a history, Future is a mystery, Today is a gift and that’s why we call it Present. I really liked these lines. We have a day and we can make it worst or best by choosing the right attitude. This is the first Philosophy of the book and most important one to begin with.

Play – We can be serious about work without being serious to ourselves. We can make our work as play and by doing so we can add a lot of fun to it. And when fun is added to your work the work becomes a reward itself. It is surely better to have such rewarding work rather than working for rewards. Adding to it when fun is added to your work, you can observe a remarkable boost in your energy in the same work which you were doing earlier with the wrong attitude. And that is another important philosophy of the book.

Be Present – This Philosophy talks about giving importance to people around you. Be it your client or internal staff members. By doing so we make them feel more valuable which is a great addition to the energy of both the parties involved in the conversation.

Make their day – Here we are expected to involve others in our fun and make that experience memorable for them. By doing so you can make the bond stronger day by day be it your customers or colleagues. You will surely be able to connect FS culture here while reading the book.

I also like the ending of the book when Mary Jane and Lonnie get married. It was truly a beautiful end.

I really enjoyed reading this book and recommend it to all to read it.

My Happiness Project – Subhalaxmi

On Day 1 of our Life class (Book club), as an extension to reading the book ‘The Happiness Project’ by Gretchen Rubin, we gave ourselves the task of creating our own Happiness Project. The tasks included reflecting on the following:

What is that one thing that you can and will spare time for everyday to make sure that you are Happy?

Create your happiness journal and write about your experience of taking on the project

Click a snap of doing what makes you happy everyday and speak about it.

What are the challenges you face in doing this everyday?

How have you attempted to overcome the challenges?

The one grouch that I have always had is my battle with my weight – even as a child I was heavy but athletic. Over time, I have lost the willingness to work on my fitness.

My commitment is my health and to that end, I think exercising to lose weight will make me happy. I commit small, but I will use 15 to 20 mins everyday to exercise. I will maintain my journal about the experience over time. I will add snaps when possible. I will also reflect on the challenges (the main challenge is willingness to start) and how I have attempted to overcome it.



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