Food For Thought
March 1, 2020
Weekend is typically reserved for unwinding and catching up with myself. I enjoy reading books and therefore it is a source of “effortful” fun to read books that capture my imagination and force me think and in some cases spark a change in the way I think, behave or act.
This evening I was contemplating on the books that impacted me in some significant manner to drive personal change and growth. Here’s a list of 5 Books that were truly transformational for me. I present them in no particular order.
“Give and Take” by Adam Grant. This is a book that brought home to me the point that my growth and success in life has a lot to do with how I help others. My traditional outlook towards my work life was to work very hard, be creative and keep challenging my comfort zone, to grow. This book forced me to consider a completely new dimension- contributing and serving others- as a way to grow and succeed in my own chosen path. This book in many ways gave me a rational framework for the Law of Karma . When I am “Giver” in all my relationships with colleagues & clients, I will the reap the benefit of multiplied value exchange, in return.
“The Effective Executive” by Peter Drucker. When I moved out from the comfort of an established corporate role into the entrepreneurial world, I found myself struggling. What are my key priorities, how do I set the right priorities, how do I manage my time, how much time should I spend doing vs facilitating, thinking- all these became real issues and I was lost. This book helped me get back to the basics and develop a system to ” get the right things done”. This book lays out 5 essential skills that makes one effective in any knowledge endeavor. 1. Becoming better at managing my time 2. Deciding on how I will contribute and create value 3. Identifying the right priorities 4. Knowing where and how to mobilize strengths of people and systems for best effect. 5. How to drive effective decision making.
“Linchpin” by Seth Godin: All of us have a lizard brain called the Amygdala that keeps telling us to be safe. We all want to do things but we have an inner voice that tells us that its not worth it, I may fail or look foolish. We have it all- intellect, knowledge, experience, skills- yet we let it all go waste. Where we should be thriving , we are worried about surviving. This book put the spotlight on my inferior sense of self and inspired me to change, making the compelling argument that there is no bigger failure than failing to try.
“Grit” by Angela Duckworth Lewis: Work ethic, zeal, hard work is more important than intellectual ability and so called talent. This book gave me a framework to approach any activity that I was trying to become skillful at. How to have deliberate intention about identifying areas of performance gaps and putting focused effort to continually improve. Writing a Blog, practicing Mindfulness are 2 activities that I could not have developed some level of proficiency in , but for some of the amazing lessons this book shares.
“The Professional” by Subroto Bagchi- This book has been the ultimate reference guide for me in terms of what it means to be a Professional today. Delivering high quality output even when unsupervised and working with integrity. I covered this in a previous blog https://ownmygrowth.com/2020/02/20/the-professional/ .