Each quarter as I reflect on the past three months, set goals for the upcoming three months, and ultimately create a reading list to be a part of these goals. The reading list is my preferred way to treat my education like the job that it is, and deliberately expose myself to new ideas to refine and sharpen my thinking. Below is a list of books I went through in Q3 2020; if one or more of these books catches your eye I hope you will consider picking one up.
- Range, by David Epstein (full summary here), is one of those books that it is a must read for anyone who has a diverse set of interests. Range puts together a series of case studies and stories that make the argument that a unique combination of diverse skills, in the long run, have a big payoff.
- Siddartha, by Hermann Hesse, is a short book that I revisit every two years or so. Siddartha is a novel telling the story of one young man’s spiritual journey during the time of Gautama Buddha; this journey takes him through many stages of life, and that no matter how different or trivial it may seem each stage is important.
- The Autobiography of Malcolm X, as told by Alex Haley, is a book that I’ve had on my shelf for several years and finally started this July. Across the 400 pages the reader gets a perspective on events that shaped his childhood, his thinking as a young man, and ultimately the evolution of his thinking by traveling to mecca. In a world where ideas are expressed in 140 characters and hot-takes I found this long-form piece of history to be important.
- With Winning in Mind, by Lanny Bassham (full summary here), is a very tactical book about how to sharpen your mental game. Lanny was an Olympic gold medalist who went on to coach athletes and professionals specifically on their mental approach to their craft. I found this book to be highly practical and have implemented several of the ideas into my life since.
- The Effective Executive, by Peter Drucker (full summary here), is a 1960’s classic with timeless ideas for the knowledge worker. This book has been on my list for a long time after hearing Tim Ferriss consistently rave about it. What I found to be most important was how relevant the ideas he had on knowledge work in the 1960s are today, mainly around concentration being the knowledge workers super power. An idea that I have found to be true in my own life.
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