I read. I love to devour books. It’s something that has happened more and more as I’ve aged. The more I read, the more I want to read more. Certain books have changed the way I live my life. They have given me more insight to who I am as a person and why I feel the way I do. I wouldn’t say all these books are Pulitzer Prize winning books, but they have served to change my life for the better.
1. I Feel Great and You Will Too!: An Inspiring Journey of Success with Practical Tips on How to Score Big in Life: This book changed my outlook on life. I was in a really bad place as a college freshman due to some family issues. This book lifted me out of that slump and set me on a new path. It’s corny, but sometimes we need corny in our life. Plus there are some really cool parts where he pokes a guy’s eye out, so it balances out.
2. The Warrior Ethos: A great look at the mindset of a true warrior. This book challenges you as a man to go after what is important and shows you the nobility in not backing down from a challenge. It was even the basis for an article I wrote called Championships and The Spartan Spirit: Why America Will Never Love Lebron James
3. Man’s Search for Meaning: This book was written by a Holocaust camp survivor and gives an inside look into his mind at the time. It showed me the attitude that I should have at all times. Even in my worst moments I think of the writer of this book Viktor E. Frankl and his struggles and I can’t help but have a positive outlook on the situation I am facing in comparison to his.
4. Wild at Heart Revised & Updated: Discovering the Secret of a Man’s Soul: This book was the ultimate connect to who I am as a man and how that carries over into my faith. It then took my faith and helped me learn to carry that over into my life. I think any man who reads this blog will be able to benefit from reading this. It will help you discover how to express your masculinity the way it was meant to be expressed. For the first time I was able to gain an understanding of each sex and how they relate in harmony through this book.
5. The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt (Modern Library Paperbacks): Roosevelt was the ultimate achiever. He did what he set out to do. He lived a life worth writing about. And he never let anything stop him. This book showed me exactly the type of person I wanted to be in this world.
6. Letters from a Stoic (Penguin Classics): This book in essence shows us what we truly need to live and the mind we need to live it. It covers religion, wealth, power and situations we face in life. This book plus reading the Bible’s Ecclesiastes would be the ultimate pairing for advice on how to live life. Both give meaning to why we feel emptiness into that which we believe to be important.
7. E-Myth Mastery: The Seven Essential Disciplines for Building a World Class Company: Everything I do in the business world comes back to this book. I judge how companies are functioning based on this book. How to structure companies based on this book. I even use this as a guide to decide what companies I have interest in working with and investing in. It’s the single best book on business and entrepreneurship I have ever read. Combined with David Allen’s Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity, my favorite investing book The Intelligent Investor: The Definitive Book on Value Investing. A Book of Practical Counsel (Revised Edition) and my favorite book on leadership by Phil Jackson called Eleven Rings: The Soul of Success you have the ultimate guide to succeeding in business.
8. Letters from a Self-Made Merchant to His Son: Following up on the best business books I have ever read, this is a story that transcends time. It’s a business book written in the early 1900’s that is still applicable today. A father of a great company writes his new employee son on how business should be done. It’s a book that anyone interested in entering the business world should read. It covers a wide variety of business issues and is a great address to young people living in the business world.
9. Letters from a Self-Made Merchant to His Son: Is it right for you to own your own business? This book answers that question better than anything I have ever read. No business book has ever made me look deeper into who I am than this book. I was forced to evaluate my beliefs and my life goals and make sure they line up while reading this book. Don’t let the title fool you. It’s a deep book about what it actually takes to be in the top 1%. A follow up to this book that most people can relate to is Choose Yourself! by James Altucher. He is not only one of my favorite bloggers, but also is more relatable to what the normal person is really trying to accomplish in their business endeavors. He helps people achieve their dream lives, not just in work, but in their personal life as well.
10. Mere Christianity: A long time ago I chose to believe what I believe. But the reason I chose to believe it was based on a certain set of thoughts and ideas. My beliefs are different from most people and I don’t ascribe to a particular dogma that our society has wrongly passed down without understanding. This book is a very direct examination of what I believe and why I believe it. It is the best example of how I was able to rationalize why I feel the way I feel.