This post will share my favorite and most impactful reads of 2020:
Book that inspired my journey… (January 2020)
Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap… and Others Don’t by Jim Collins one of the best business books I ever read. His theory of “who” is more important that “what” has been so impactful in my IMIND journey and also in my daily life. His insight behind good companies and great companies is mindboggling.
Collins idea behind the transformation of good company to great is not overnight or there is no miracle moment, but it’s the collection of every single step.
What taught me habits for rest of my life… (February 2020)
The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin by Benjamin Franklin… I’ve always been fascinated by the daily routines of the giants. His autobiography taught me very important lessons that will never be forgotten. His virtues Temperance, Silence, Order, Resolution, Frugality, Industry, Sincerity, Justice, Moderation, Cleanliness, Tranquility, Chasity and Humility drove him all his life from being a normal kid to a leading writer, printer, political philosopher, politician, Freemason, postmaster, scientist, inventor, humorist, civic activist, statesman, and diplomat.
In dealing with people back in 18th Century he said, “Truth, sincerity and integrity were the utmost important to the felicity of life.” His daily routine inspired me to make my own.
Book I keep revisiting … (March 2020)
As A Man Thinketh by James Allen. Inspired by a very famous saying that goes, “Circumstances doesn’t make a man, it reveals him to himself”, this book has taught me to cherish my ideals and vision. He insight behind the effects of thoughts on health and body. “Body is the servant of mind” he said. Calmness, he explained as a beautiful jewel of wisdom. His concept behind Self-control as a strength, Right thought as a mastery and Calmness as a power were so immense.
What I’m reading and thinking about a lot … (March 2020)
Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari. From the Neanderthal man to Homo sapiens, the unique feature of Homo sapiens that made us dominant over other species. The power of fiction that only Humans are able to make. And the jaw dropping explanation from the Agricultural Revolution to Industrial Revolution to the Capitalism. This book I think should be read by everybody to understand who we are and how we will be in the future.
What is inspiring and rejuvenating … (April 2020)
The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom by Don Miguel Ruiz. This is the book suggested by Tim Ferriss. Ruiz tells that our image of perception is the reason we reject ourselves, it’s why we don’t accept ourselves they way we are and why we don’t accept others the way they are. The four agreements explained in this book (Be impeccable with your words, don’t take anything personally, don’t make Assumptions, and Always do your best) are the lessons for life.
What surprised me and made me think… (May 2020)
The Millionaire Next Door: The Surprising Secrets of America’s Wealthy by Thomas J. Stanley. His ideas behind UAWs and PAWs.
His Millionaire Next Door Formula (Multiply your age times your realized pretax annual household income from all sources except inheritances. Divide by ten. This, less any inherited wealth, is what your net worth should be).
The seven common denominators of wealthy people in America were one of the important lessons I learnt, which are:
- They live well below their means.
- They allocate their time, energy, and money efficiently, in ways conducive to building wealth.
- They believe that financial independence is more important than displaying high social status.
- Their parents did not provide economic outpatient care.
- Their adult children are economically self-sufficient.
- They are proficient in targeting market opportunities.
- They chose the right occupation.
Book that is surreal and what I keep revisiting… (June 2020)
Principle: Life and Work by Ray Dalio. One of my mentors/advisors in defining my and IMIND’s Principles, Raymond Thomas Dalio, an American billionaire hedge fund manager and philanthropist wrote this masterpiece that I keep revisiting. Every single word in this book is like a dose that makes you build an outstanding and long-term successful organization. His idea behind Idea-meritocracy and radical-transparency are most important but neglected factors when it comes to building an organization. I can’t address more here because when I do it will lose its essence. This is a book of the century.
What I’m fortunate enough to read… (July 2020)
Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking by Malcolm Gladwell. I was so fortunate enough to have this book in my library. This book was with me since 2019 but did not have the tick to read. The reason I picked this book in 2020 was that one of my friends asked me How do I make decisions (Actually, it was a scenario question. If I remember it correctly it was: if was driving a train and saw a child in a way, what would I do? Would I save that child by risking all the other passengers?) This was a tough question. Gladwell, in this book, explains our decision-making system. This book has helped me when it comes to decision making.
What I’ve started and still reading… (August 2020)
The Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell. Suggested by billionaire Ray Dalio, I started this book, which is a different genre than what I usually read. The idea of myths and the hero’s journey in this is so fabulous that I keep analyzing every step of my life with this book.
Books that I read and suggest others as well… (September 2020)
Capitalism, Alone by Branko Milanović. This is the book that I am still reading and helped me understand the that the current world is driven by capitalism. The idea of Liberal Meritocratic Capitalism and Political Capitalism is very insightful that it was a must read during this current time.
The mindboggling book/articles/ Eastern philosophies… (October 2020)
Tao Te Ching by Lao-Tzu. This is one of the most insightful books ever read. “When nothing is done, nothing is left undone, Lao-Tzu said.
The Great Learning: The idea of superior man, knowing the root, making thought sincere. A superior man must be watchful over himself when he is alone, a must important but underestimated lesson for years. It teaches virtue is the root, wealth is the result.
The Doctrine of the Mean: It’s a Eastern philosophy which is natural. It taught me: There is nothing more visible than what is secret and nothing more manifested than what is minute. Therefor, a superior man must be watchful over himself when he is alone. It also shows a way to be in equilibrium which is attained when there is no stirrings of pleasure, anger, sorrow, or joy.
Book that I re-read after five years … (November 2020)
Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl. It’s one of the best books ever read. I came back to this book after five years but never lost its essence. Frankl was one of the prisoners of the Auschwitz Concentration Camp, the biggest concentration camp, where all of his family member was burnt in the gas chamber. He writes about his days in camp and how he managed to survive and find peace when his pregnant wife was burnt. He said, “Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedom.” If there is a meaning in life at all, then there must be a meaning in suffering too, he said in this book.
Book of my life and need it right now… (December 2020)
Meditations by Marcus Aurelius. One of the great books that I should have read earlier in my life. But timing doesn’t matter. Written as a journal by Marcus Aurelius back in 1st Century, it talks about four stoic virtues: Courage, Wisdom, Justice and Temperance. My introduction to stoicism is brought by this book which in my opinion is the greatest discovery. The idea of death and meditating on mortality is breathtaking. “Memento Mori” one of my favorite words is introduced by stoicism. From book 1 to Book 12, this book meditation is full of wisdom and shows us the way to live a meaningful and sound life.