Discussion Guide for The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson

As you know, I’m doing a challenge this year to read 52 Leadership (and Personal Development) books in 2016. I’m a little behind with my reading schedule, but I still have high hopes to finish the challenge.

discussion guide the slight edge

The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson

The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson was recommended to me by several people, including my teacher and leadership mentor. During the Spring 2016 semester, my friend Nathan and I are co-coordinating a leadership series for students on campus. The leadership series had never discussed a book before, but I decided to try as an optional discussion through Facebook.

While I was planning my discussion, I found that there were not any discussion guides out there for the book (at least I didn’t find any). So, during my reading, I tried to come up with a few questions for each chapter and I’m going to share them with you! Interested in reading my review and recommendations, you can do so here.

Chapter 1:

  • Did you think he was talking about the same person? Were you surprised?
  • What’s the difference between success and survival, in your opinion?
  • Have you ever had a ‘Night of Despair?’ What does that feel like?
  • What are some ways to maintain the energy that takes you from failure to survival?

Chapter 2:

  • the-slight-edge-discussion-guide
  • If you feel comfortable sharing, what is your philosophy? How does it affect your life?
  • “Successful people fail their way to the top.” What does this mean to you?

Chapter 3:

  • Would you have taken the penny or the million?
  • What are some small “daily disciplines” you have or could incorporate into your life?

Chapter 4:

  • What mundane tasks do college students need to do everyday to see success?
  • “What’s easy to do is also easy not to do.” What do you think about this? Have you ever looked at this perspective before?
  • After reading this chapter, what “mundane” tasks are you going to add to your routine?

Chapter 5:

  • What is something in your life that you would not have if it were not for time?
  • Where could one of your goals be at in a year? Two? Five?

Chapter 6:

  • What “quantum leap” are you waiting for? How are you going to make it happen?
  • What can you do now to get your “big break?”

Chapter 7:

  • I often remind myself of the quote, “happiness is not a destination, but the journey.” Based on this quote and the chapter, is it easy to think like this? How can we remind ourselves of this?
  • “The more you raise your own happiness level, the more likely you’ll start achieving all those things you want to achieve.” What does this quote mean to you? How can you raise your own happiness level?
  • “Be happy and the reason will appear” graffiti
  • This chapter discusses that more people want to learn how to be happy than personal development. Why do you think this is? How does being happy differ from personal development?

Chapter 8:

  • How awesome is it that this chapter is written by the author’s daughter? The ripple effect in action.
  • Have you grown up with any slight edge actions that have gotten you to where you are today?
  • Amber talks about how her classmates from high school had far different paths than her own. Can you relate? Is the slight edge already in action for you?

Chapter 9:

  • What are your goals?
  • What are your “pennies?”
  • “The path that’s so easy to take, yet so easy not to.” What are your thoughts?

Chapter 10:

  • Chapter 10 has a large quote about the definition of responsibility. How does this differ from your understanding before reading the quote?
  • On page 149, there is a small experiment. What are your thoughts and how does this impact your reading of this book thus far?
  • Which path do you think you are on and why?

Chapter 11:

  • “Mastery is in the act of setting your foot on the path, not in reaching it’s end.” How has your views on mastery changed or stayed the same?
  • Have you ever experienced someone’s self defense when sharing your goals?
  • How can getting out of your comfort zone impact your life position?
  • Does your definition of comfort change? If you leave your comfort zone for the upward path, do you ever return?

Chapter 12:

  • Are you learning by study or by doing?
  • “If you aren’t doing, you’re dying.” Thoughts?
  • How can we use the Apollo program to remind us to be on track?
  • How can we make our goals part of our auto-pilot mode?

Chapter 13:

  • Is there someone in your life you consider a mentor?
  • How do you try to be more like your mentors?
  • Who are your five? Do they reflect who you want to be?
  • What are some ways you can limit your time with the “dimmers?”

Chapter 14:

  • Where can steady changes help in your life?
  • How can you start leaving less things unfinished?
  • What are your thoughts on being busy versus being productive?
  • How can we celebrate our “right” choices?

Chapter 15:

  • How can you replace bad habits with good ones?

Chapter 16:

  • Write down your five goals. Consider sharing.
  • What can we learn from the German story?

Chapter 17:

  • How can we get a “beginner’s mind” in our lives?
  • Break down your goals for the seven key areas of life.

Chapter 18:

  • Now what?
  • How will you incorporate The Slight Edge in your daily life?
  • Will you take the challenge?



Thanks for reading,


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