From the New York Times bestselling author of I'm Judging You, a hilarious and transformational book about how to tackle fear--that everlasting hater--and audaciously step into lives, careers, and legacies that go beyond even our wildest dreams
Luvvie Ajayi Jones is known for her trademark wit, warmth, and perpetual truth-telling. But even she's been challenged by the enemy of progress known as fear. She was once afraid to call herself a writer, and nearly skipped out on doing a TED talk that changed her life because of imposter syndrome. As she shares in Professional Troublemaker, she's not alone.
We're all afraid. We're afraid of asking for what we want because we're afraid of hearing "no." We're afraid of being different, of being too much or not enough. We're afraid of leaving behind the known for the unknown. But in order to do the things that will truly, meaningfully change our lives, we have to become professional troublemakers: people who are committed to not letting fear talk them out of the things they need to do or say to live free.
With humor and honesty, and guided by the influence of her professional troublemaking Nigerian grandmother, Funmilayo Faloyin, Luvvie walks us through what we must get right within ourselves before we can do the things that scare us; how to use our voice for a greater good; and how to put movement to the voice we've been silencing--because truth-telling is a muscle.
The point is not to be fearless, but to know we are afraid and charge forward regardless. It is to recognize that the things we must do are more significant than our fears. This book is about how to live boldly in spite of all the reasons we have to cower. Let's go!
About the Author
Luvvie Ajayi Jones is an award-winning author, speaker, and podcast host, who thrives at the intersection of comedy, media and justice. She is the author of the New York Times bestseller I'm Judging You: The Do-Better Manual, and her site, AwesomelyLuvvie, is where she covers all things culture with a critical yet humorous lens. She is co-founder of the #SharetheMicNow global movement and runs her own social platform, LuvvNation, which is a safe space in a dumpster fire world.
Praise for Professional Troublemaker
“Luvvie Ajayi Jones reveals the ways imposter syndrome has threatened her writing career and argues truth tellers could do with some practice in this follow-up to 2016’s I’m Judging You. Use it to prepare for your next big win.” —Essence
“Luvvie Ajayi Jones, the bestselling author of I’m Judging You, brings Professional Troublemaker: The Fear-Fighter Manual, a hilarious and transformational book about how to tackle fear-that everlasting hater-and audaciously step into lives, careers and legacies that go beyond even our wildest dreams.” —Black Business Guide, named one of the 21 Books by Black Writers to Read in 2021
“Looking for ways to tackle fear or overcome imposter syndrome? This anticipated release is aimed at those who need that extra push with stepping out of their comfort zone, and transforming into an individual who is committed to not letting fear keep them from living the life they truly desire.” —Lux & Concord
“As an oft-scared chickenhead, who cares too much about what others think, it’s so comforting to be guided through my own crippling fear and self-doubt by one of the bravest, most incisively honest, hysterical voices I know. This book was so real, relatable and so much of it had me belly laughing. This is the essential manual for anybody who is ready to take that leap of faith to bet on the best, uninhibited, whole version of themselves.” —Issa Rae, actor, producer, New York Times bestselling author
“This book is a manual on HOW TO HUMAN. You could spend a lifetime and fortune finding the perfect therapist, mentor, minister, career coach, and girlfriend—or you could just spend a day reading Professional Troublemaker. This book—Luvvie Ajayi Jones’s most helpful, bold, vulnerable, hilarious, and relevant work yet—is equal parts catharsis and wake-up call, both comforting and galvanizing. I laughed and cried so hard that my family asked me to read in the other room. With her razor-sharp mind, soul on fire, and heart of gold—Luvvie is the writer and artist the world needs right now. This will be my go-to gift for all the beloved troublemakers in my life.” —Glennon Doyle, author of #1 New York Times bestseller Untamed and founder of Together Rising “There’s nobody quite like Luvvie Ajayi Jones. She’s a force and a powerhouse, the thunder and the lightning—and Professional Troublemaker shows us exactly how she got that way. This is a great book about reaching deep down inside yourself, crushing your fears, unleashing your ‘too-muchness,’ and giving yourself permission to shake the world. In a voice that is funny, wise, bold, and always generous, Luvvie encourages, inspires, and dares us to follow our dreams, fight against injustice, soak up the pleasures of life, and take up all the space in the room. If this book doesn’t make you feel bolder and braver by the final page, then you weren’t reading it right. I loved every passionate word of it.” —Elizabeth Gilbert, New York Times bestselling author of Big Magic and Eat, Pray, Love “Whether you are traversing new territory, bounding back from perceived failure, or learning for the first time how to own the full power of your own voice, Luvvie’s Fear Fighting Manual is the pep talk we all need. Delivered in her singular voice and signature shade, this must-read is chock-full of gems that will guide you out of your own way so you can get more out of your life—a life that is more interesting than one lived in fear.” —Elaine Welteroth, journalist and New York Times bestselling author of More Than Enough
“If you’ve seen her TED talk or read her first bestseller, you know there isn’t a smarter or funnier cultural critic alive. This is the eye-opening, soul-nourishing, sidesplitting book you need to replace the anguish of 2020 with the courage to overcome your fears, master your doubts, and make good trouble in 2021.” —Adam Grant, New York Times bestselling author of Think Again and Originals, and host of the TED podcast WorkLife
“As if there was ever a reason to think Luvvie Ajayi was simply a powerful voice, Professional Troublemaker will remind readers that she is one of the most effective and evocative writers alive.” —Kiese Laymon, New York Times bestselling author of Heavy
“Some of the greatest pleasures in life come from breaking rules, questioning boundaries and troublemaking. But to make trouble well—and to bring all the pieces of yourself to life, love and conflict—is an art. Luvvie Ajayi knows this and shows this as she guides readers to finding their own path to troublemaking with humor, charm and a whole lot of heart.” —Esther Perel, psychotherapist, podcast host, and New York Times bestselling author
“This book is a comfort and a challenge. It inspires, encourages, heartens and invigorates in equal measure. You should read it.” — Jenny Lawson, New York Times bestselling author of Furiously Happy and Let’s Pretend This Never Happened
“Luvvie is authentic power personified. This book has so much depth, ancestral wisdom, and inspiration said in the most delightful way. It is ancient text, wrapped in hilarious observations, charm, and a supportive urging to become more. A blueprint for living with courage and unapologetically standing in your greatness. I legit had my jaw dropped mouth wide open in so many parts, and I felt God all in this book. There is seriously no one like Luvvie; she is 1 of 1.” —Devi Brown, chief impact officer at Chopra Global and master wellness educator
“Tired of the status quo? This book is a MUST read. There is no better time to shake up your life, your work, or your perspective than today. Luvvie pushes you to places you have always wanted to go, but never thought you could—until now. If you are a leader, urge your people to read this book. Limiting beliefs will be overcome, empowerment will be at an all-time high and the term ‘professional troublemaker’ will become standard when it comes to taking people to the next level.” —Mel Robbins, bestselling author of The 5 Second Rule
“THIS BOOK. I’m mad Luvvie wrote an even better book than her debut. LIVID in the best way. Professional Troublemaker is full of stories that made me laugh until my stomach hurt, advice that made me rearrange my priorities, and so many examples of the highs and lows of living a semi-public public creative life. Read this book to be simultaneously entertained and educated. Luvvie Ajayi Jones has a singular writing voice that comes across warm, kind, and just judge-y enough.” —Ashley C. Ford, author of Somebody’s Daughter
“The three things we need right now are the ability to fight through our fears, the understanding that we can make change in our lives and the world, and the invitation to laugh—hard and often. Luvvie—who is among the most hilarious, passionate women I know—gives us all three in her forthcoming book, which is chock full of all of the things we all think, but never say. It’s the daily vitamin we all need during these times.” —Abby Wambach, Olympic gold medalist and FIFA World Cup champion
“Rants & Randomness podcast host Jones (I’m Judging You) explores how to fight fear in order to speak up for oneself in this witty, insightful guide. . . Readers needing the extra push to stand up will find Jones’s advice enlightening and empowering. (Mar.)” —Publishers Weekly
“Bold, insightful wisdom from a leading proponent of self-expression.” —Kirkus
“Like a self-help book minus the corniness.” —PureWow