“She reads books as one would breathe air, to fill up and live” – Annie Dillard.
I never used to be a big reader. In fact, between the ages of 23-29 I never picked up a single book. I would tell myself was that I was ‘burnt out’ from reading books after 5 years of studying Psychology textbooks. But the truth was, I was simply finding excuses.
It was only when I began to take my personal development seriously that I began to realise the true value of reading. In fact, I recall the exact moment I was sitting on the QF74 Qantas flight from Sydney to San Francisco. I was watching the documentary Becoming Warren Buffet, when Buffet openly talked about his love affair with reading. It hit me like a tonne of bricks- I was missing out.
Over the last couple of years, I’ve really tried to make up for all the reading time I lost. All those hours sitting in front of the tv watching The Kardashians never served any purpose other than to entertain me. Books on the other hand, well- they have taught me, inspired me, opened up my mind and my heart in ways I never thought were possible.
So, before I continue to talk about the countless ways books have positively impacted my life, i’d like to share the top 5 books I’ve read that have had the most profound impact on me:
1. BREAKING THE HABIT OF BEING YOURSELF – DR. JOE DISPENZA
In this incredibly inspiring and enlightening read, I learned that we are not doomed by our genes and hard-wired to be a certain way for the rest of our lives. I learned that we aren’t victims to our environment nor our circumstances, and have the power to live a life that is beyond what we think we are capable of living.
2. SHOE DOG – PHIL KNIGHT
I heard about this book after it was recommended to me by my best friend. She read it, loved it, and said I had to read it. And the moment I started, I couldn’t put it down.
Phil Knight is the founder of Nike, and shares his candid, raw and riveting memoir of his journey into entrepreneurship and its evolution into one of the world’s most iconic, game-changing and profitable brands. Shoe Dog is the first book that has made me share a tear (or two). A truly incredible read and without a doubt, one I will re-visit in the future.
3. TOOL OF TITANS – TIM FERRISS
(And basically any other Tim Ferris Book for that matter).
In this book, Ferriss interviews 130 + world-class performers and teases out their tactics, routines and habits. This book is full of wisdom and full of goodness, and will act as a reference point for me for many, many years to come. Tim Ferris’ book The Four Hour Work Week follows as a close second.
4. THE LIFE-CHANGING MAGIC OF TIDYING UP – MARIE KONDO
In this book, Marie Kondo shares her incredible techniques on the art of tidying up. I truly didn’t realise how much further I could up my organisation game until I read this book. Kondo shares her methodology between the KonMari method, encouraging tidying up by category, not room or location. Items should be kept or discarded based on one simple criteria- whether they continue to bring you joy.
I have personally found this method to be incredibly effective, and am looking forward to watching her new Netflix series, “Tidying Up With Marie Kondo.”
5. WHAT I KNOW FOR SURE – OPRAH WINFREY
There’s something incredibly delightful about the way Oprah Winfrey puts pen to paper, and shares her life’s wisdom. This book was enlightening, inspiring and revealing, and helped me to view life with new perspective.
Organised by theme – joy, resilience, connection, gratitude, possibility, awe, clarity & power, this book offers a powerful and intimate glimpse into the heart and mind of one of the world’s most extraordinary women.
BOOKS ON MY TO-READ LIST:
So what’s next on the list for me? Some of the books I’ll be getting stuck into this year include:
- Principles – Ray Dalio
- Good to Great – Jim Collins
- 12 Rules for Life – Jordan Peterson
- Purple Cow – Seth Godin
- The Fountainhead – Ayn Rand
- Stumbling on Happiness – Daniel Gilbert
- The Selfish Gene – Richard Dawkins
- The War of Art – Steven Pressfield
- Poor Charlie’s Almanack – Charlie Munger
- Linchpin – Seth Godin
What are some of the books you plan on reading over the next 12 months? I would love to hear your thoughts and suggestions – leave your recommendations in the comments below!