One of the most exciting things I’ve witnessed over the last year is your insatiable desire to read. I’m so glad, too, because I already mentioned I hoped that would be the case because of this blog. I was utterly amazed at how fast you devoured the four book collection PopPops gave you for Christmas.
One of my first memories as a child is being in the living room of my biological father’s house. I would have been about two years old, maybe towards my third birthday. The room was painted a shade of yellow. There were chairs, and a loveseat/couch. And between all the chairs, there were stacks and stacks and stacks of books.
Sometime after I became an adult, I told my mom about this memory and she told me that my biological father’s family were voracious readers. They read constantly. She said the entire family would just sit around the house reading.
My mom was also a voracious reader. I remember rows and rows of steamy romance novels on her bookshelf when I was a kid.
So, it should be fairly obvious that I love to read as well. I will read anything. Fiction, non-fiction, cereal boxes, ingredients lists. If it has words, I am just drawn to it.
Now at 38, I can say that my desire to read (and learn) has paid off in more ways than I would have ever imagined. While I haven’t reached all my goals in life, knowledge I’ve gained through self-education has definitely been the catalyst that has given me the confidence to seek more in life than settling on a mundane career, and the information I learned long ago only becomes more powerful as I get older.
I have touched on this in How To Develop Your Leadership Skills, but I can’t stress the importance of being a life-long learner. Keep learning after school. Seek knowledge in ideas and concepts that interest you even if you don’t learn them in school. Proactively look for sources of information, absorb them, and then apply them to your life. You’ll figure out which information works best as you go.
I will talk about these books more as I continue to write to you, but a few books and authors I think would be of high value include:
The One Thing by Gary Keller & Jay Papasan
Good To Great by Jim Collins (Read anything by Jim Collins)
Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill
Radical Candor by Kim Scott
Tipping Point by Malcom Gladwell (Read anything https://www.startwithadollar.com/how-to-develop-your-leadership-skills/ by this guy too)
The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz
Purple Cow by Seth Godin (Also pretty much anything by him)
The Autobiography of Andrew Carnegie
Andrew Carnegie by David Nasaw
Team of Rivals by Doris Kearns Goodwin
The Goal by Eliyahu Goldratt
Scrum by Jeff Sutherland
Goodbye, Things by Fumio Sasaki
The Minimalist Home by Joshua Becker
For sales and marketing, anything by Dan Kennedy.
This is just a sneak peak into my Audible account. There are so many more. Hopefully I’ll be able to give you access to my Audible subscription one day. I have found that while I have always preferred physically reading books, I enjoy audio books as I’ve gotten older because I can absorb the information and not clutter my house with books.
The only caveat to being an insatiable reader is that you must DO something with the knowledge you gain. There is a misguided quote that you’ll hear in life:
“Knowledge is power.”
This isn’t true. The quote should be:
“Applied knowledge is power.”
It’s easy to think that the most powerful habit you can ever have is to read or learn. I think that’s the first step. It’s only part of the equation. You can know everything in the world, but if you don’t do something with it, your knowledge is wasted.
The most powerful habit you can ever have is to consistently and independently seek knowledge and apply what you learn to your circumstances.
Do this and cannot help by succeed.
P.S. I’m currently reading a book about anti-gravity. It’s impossible to put down!
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