Last month was all about work and productivity. The older me (self two years ago) would be scared of the term of productivity. Since the start of this year, I am reading and learning about how in this new economy one can manage work-life balance and a lot depends on being productive since productivity is directly proportional to your well-being which comes from you being a happy person.
Words mean things, and when certain words are repeated in certain type of situations they change behaviour and can change the course of how we live. In the book Ego is the Enemy, when Ryan holiday speaks about ‘Ego’, he does not mean the Freudian definition. He is talking about ego in an informal way, the way we used it in our casual conversations. The ego he refers are the unhealthy belief in our own importance, our arrogance, and our self-centred ambition. That desire for recognition, and those excuses we make to ourselves. This is a crucial concept to understand if you are planning to read this book.
Often these days we see books with catchy covers that are entitled to one half of our species. Then many of us from the other half disown the notion of reading that book even though we know that it will do good to us, we will gather some better thoughts for our intellectual and conscience from that book. There isn’t any gender gap at start when we are naive. It’s a seed sown inside our heads. This is what we teach and preach from then on and that’s how our children begin to differ. And then it becomes a problem.
Both women and men are human beings. One species! How can someone differentiate between the workings of the two? I tell you to disown the “disowning notion” right now. Start it today. Start by reading some books like Wendy Sachs’sFearless and Free: How Smart Women pivot & relaunch their careers.
No, I did not watch this video before reading Mastery by Robert Greene book. Though I do watched it after reading the book and it made me read the book again and get deep into it. Malkhaz has elegantly and importantly described the whole 310 pages long book in almost 13 minutes and if you are not going to read this post, at least watch the video. You’ll definitely learn something new. If you decide to read this post, keep in my mind that I’m only writing about this book is because I enjoyed reading it and simply want to share my thoughts on it.
I was first introduced to Robert Greene’s works in 48 Laws of Power when I saw that red binding, vertical blue stripe in the middle of the cover in a local bookstore. I had a series of thoughts in parallel and some of them were extreme and exciting. After reading a few pages, he become my company for the next few days, especially morning and night. Not many books do I enjoy reading in the morning, but I can say Robert Greene’s writing is definitely the one to be enjoyed in the morning bliss. Wake up, get yourself together and Greene’s words will help to get hold of yourself for the rest of the day.
I introduced myself to Tim Ferriss last year when I randomly found a post on his blog in which he had interviewed Maria Popova. Actually, I was searching for Brain Picking’s Maria Popova’s interviews as she is such an inspiring blogging personality, the way she curate the content for every post is amazing and seems an example of a creative process, just right out of her imagination.You must check out Brain Pickings. Moreover, scan through Tim Ferriss’ blog which is called FourHourWorkWeek.com and got introduced to his podcast, The Tim Ferriss Show [Podcast Link]. He has done an amazing job by taking more than hundred 60+ minute interviews with some of the successful and interesting people by digging deep into their “mind”, process of their workings, process of maintaining their bodies, listening to their suggestions and how do they motivate, inspire, live and do something that they love to do.
Tools of Titans is an enormous collection of bits and pieces of interviews that are available on his podcast and highlights the major theme of most of the interviews Tim has included in this book. The book is huge, exceeding 700 pages and is certainly not meant to be read all at once. It’s not Tolstoy’s War and Peace or David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest that you can read continuously without moving your body parts for next 7 to 10 days or so. Bear in mind, reading Tools of Titans will take more than that many days since it has a sheer amount of practical information to be processed by our mind. I’d recommend you to take your time with each interview described by Tim, think over it, if there’s a book recommended in between as there are so some interesting book recommendations, try to read few of them or at least do a little research on why the book is being recommended, what’s there inside and is the book for you? Then you can definitely add it to your TBR.
Recently, in suggested videos on youtube, I came across Robert Greene’s TEDx Brixton talk on “transforming oneself”. Greene shares with us the transformation he underwent in his life, all that endurance and words of others as heavy as punches on one’s face and then managed to write 48 Laws of Power in 1998 that became a bestseller eventually.
Greene emphasise on power, patience, social intelligence, self-intelligence and acute realism. He is a very calm speaker or perhaps intended to be for the occasion. He urges one to delude the illusion of someone’s success that is often termed as “got lucky”. Instead of grasping these illusions, one must focus on the development of habits, accumulation of knowledge, and ability to be unaffected by the criticism. We should not ignore the these deep in nature aspects in order to change ourselves for betterment.
The bestseller 48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene is often considered as an evil piece of work, however, the evilness in the book is the reality of the world we are part of. This is how world works and 48 Laws of Power is an understanding, a concise one. Robert Greene certainly help us to improve our understanding of the world better. There’s no harm in that.
Reading this book will definitely increase one’s awareness as he will become more conscious to what and how is it going around. Some of the laws will inspire you as they did to me, towards empowerment of your own and some will help how not to lose that conscious mind in somebody else’s hand. Greene encourages an individual to be fluid in his plans and actions as actions are what matters and not the words.
Focus on the smaller internal changes that lay the groundwork for a much larger change in fortune. It is the difference between grasping an illusion and emerging yourself in reality, and reality is what will liberate and transform you!- Robert Greene
In The Power of Habit, Charles Duhigg explained why a person does what he does. He is out with a new book this time, entitled— Smarter Faster Better: The Secrets of Being Productive and applies same relentless level of details, with numerous research studies and interviews, makes this one too, highly informative.
Unlike The Power of Habit, Smarter Faster Better offers a variety of chapters, each different from the other in terms conceptual illustration and every chapter’s locus is on the key ideas of expanding productivity. Some elements related to productivity discussed in this book are the mental state of a person’s mind in a particular situation. Then comes decision making part. Duhigg explains the importance of creating mental models to take control of a situation through various interviews including Marine Corps, Google, the original team that created Saturday Night Live, General Electric.
For enhancing decision making, Duhigg suggests one should involve probabilistic possibilities of a significant outcome in terms of both negative or positive. That’s the fundamental of calculating odds. Along with that, the author has also enhanced on how data is important to us and how an organisation of any form can learn something from it by its implementation. (more…)
Some times fiction isn’t enough to get accustomed to a subject deeply. One has to read non-fiction book and yes there are some non-fiction books which are written with quality writing and posses good amount of knowledge on a specific subject.
Zero to One by Peter Theil. You just have to read this though provoking book.
In The Plex by Steven Levy- Steven Levy is one of the best non fiction writers. This time he tells us the working of our daily lives one of the biggest asset: Google.
My Rating 4 out of 5
Leading by Alex Ferguson & Michael Moritz. Even though this book is written from football point of view, it’s good book to learn something or the other about being a leader. Managing a football team such as Manchester United is like managing a big organisation in itself. This book is all about Leadership.