A LITTLE EXTRA FOR BOOK LOVERS
Because I believe WORDS CREATE WORLDS, there are few things as exciting for me as starting a new book. I remember once spending an entire day – and I mean a full nine hours! – in a beautiful bookstore in Denver, Colorado.
I was lost to everything else and experienced that glorious flow of time that happens when we’re completely immersed in something.
Below are a few of my favourite development reads. I invite you to explore a new category, a new author or even a new subject, and discover where growth may happen for you.
MINDSET FOR BUSINESS
Start with Why
Back in 2009 Simon Sinek started a movement to help people become more inspired at work, and in turn inspire their colleagues and customers. He explained that the leaders who’ve had the greatest influence, all thought, acted and communicated in the same way – and it turns out this was the opposite to what everyone else did.
It all starts with WHY and the ‘golden circle’, and his style of leadership thinking has resurfaced widely in the Covid era with so many people asking lots of WHY questions.
Simon also has a TED Talk by the same title, which has been watched over 48 million times. See it here.
Six Thinking Hats
Anyone faced with decision-making (so really, everyone) or wanting productive group discussions would benefit from reading this and applying the tools – the six hats – to help them think more effectively.
The technique is a fantastic way to unlock creative thought and help you focus on solutions rather than just sitting entrenched in your problem.
It encourages ways of discovering ideas and options that would likely be overlooked if a group was all thinking along the same, homogenous lines.
In other words, diversity is KEY.
The 7 Habits
An oldie but still a goodie!
Stephen Covey’s ‘Seven Habits‘ culminated in habit number 7 – “to seek continuous improvement and renewal professionally and personally.
Sharpen the Saw means preserving and enhancing the greatest asset you have – YOU.” It means having a balanced programme for self-renewal in the four areas of your life: social/emotional, physical, mental and spiritual.
So . . . without using one of the most quoted management phrases in recent history, what habits are YOU cultivating?
Talk about disruption! I was spellbound by how forward-thinking Ricardo Semler was back in the 80s, turning a small family business into one of Brazil’s most resilient and successful companies.
He did this by giving full autonomy to all his employees – in how much leave they took, their salaries etc – and SEMCO has been recognised as one of the most successfully re-engineered companies in the world!
His thinking even extends beyond the workplace: see his TED Talk on what corporate work and our education systems could REALLY be like by watching this
MINDSET FOR DEVELOPMENT
The Gifts of Imperfection
Ever since I saw her TED Talk on VULNERABILITY back in 2012, I have been a huge fan of research professor Brené Brown. This book is the perfect starting point for anyone who has spent years people-pleasing and trying to ‘get it right’.
I found huge relief in acknowledging that it was ok to make mistakes. It gave me permission to accept the true nature of being human, and all the foibles that come with our very human existence.
Also, if you haven’t seen her TED Talk yet, I invite you to watch it now. It’s the best 20 minutes you’ll spend all year!
Man's Search for Meaning
If ever there was a book to make you appreciate the absolute gift that is your life, this is it! Set in a concentration camp in World War 11, Frankl writes about his search for meaning while enduring devastation, cruelty, starvation (and every other malfeasance you can think of) as a prisoner.
He documented in great detail his observations of minute human changes and hope, and how we can choose to see a purpose or meaning in any situation, including the worst of conditions such as he endured. It sounds counter-intuitive, but it really gives one HOPE in a world gone mad.
A New Earth
When I first found Eckhart Tolle’s book ‘The Power of Now‘ I wasn’t ready for it, and it was years later before I could really appreciate his particular style of wisdom. When he published ‘A New Earth‘ I embraced it immediately, and absorbed every chapter like rain after a drought!
Tolle says the book’s purpose “is not to add new information or beliefs to your mind or try to convince you of anything, but to bring about a shift in consciousness.”
I still think it’s one of my Top 10 reads ever.
Ask and It Is Given
The foundational work of ‘Abraham’ (also known as Source) as interpreted by Esther Hicks who presents their teachings. Practical, easy to understand, and one of my very favourite introductions to the Universal Law of Attraction and how to live the joyous and fulfilling lives we all deserve. It’s all about going with the flow!
‘Abraham’ (through Esther) has published a number of other books and hundreds of YouTube videos from their weekly seminars, but this is one to keep, read and read again. JOY is the key!