januari 2019 | Sharma
Amazing Books to Read (The List)
What a dazzlingly exciting period on the timeline of our beloved world. We can create, optimize, influence and inspire like never before.
The average person has a better life now than royalty did, just a century ago.
One of the most lavish rewards of the modern era is our digital access to valuable information (and yes, there’s a mass of trivial distraction trying to hook us out there too). We can click a link or two and mine the minds of the planet’s pundits, society’s saviors and history’s heroes. How exciting. And yet, I still love holding a real book … it’s one of my favorite things in life … (A phenomenal library is richer than financial prosperity, I’d say.)
My heart rises staring at the cover after a new book has arrived, opening the first pages, being transported into another universe, tailor-made by the author, delighting in the feel of the pages as well as the smell of the paper.
Anyway, over the past few days, I’ve been going through some of the books in my library that have made an immense impact on me. Some are classics and some are new releases. I just felt I should share the titles with you.
Note One of the best practices of the most thoughtful, successful, sophisticated and graceful people I’ve mentored (and met) is this: they read everything they can get their hands on. So, with a ton of goodwill toward your highest greatness, here you go:
On Writing: A Memoir of The Craft
What a valuable book for any creative person. And, no matter if you’re a banker, bookkeeper or a baker – you are paid to create. King, a great master of thrilling novels, walks you through his personal story, how he overcame difficulty and his private tactics to get his work done.
The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles
Another splendid book. Pressfield is deeply insightful on how we humans sabotage our brilliance and waste our magnificence. In punchy short chapters, he’ll fuel your fire to release magic into the world. And accomplish radiant work.
A total classic. I first read this book years ago on a pristine beach in the Dominican Republic. Loved it ever since. It’s not for anyone who feels entitled to success. And resistant to the idea of personal responsibility.
The Bonfire of The Vanities
Read this one when I was in law school, to ease my mind after arduous days of studying. I still remember some of Wolfe’s absolute genius lines. Ingeniously handcrafted and a pure gift to read.
Mandela’s Way: Lessons On Life, Love and Courage
Oh, how I’ve learned from – and been influenced by – this book about my hero that I purchased on one of my frequent visits to the great nation of South Africa. Stengel knew Nelson Mandela well. This biography is packed with observations that you won’t find anywhere else. A treasure.
Michael Jordan: The Life
A fascinating romp through the life of the alpha athlete who became a legend (and a billionaire). If you’re in need of some fire to fuel your ambition and some information to encourage you on your mission, read this one.
Ali: A Life
Another biography about a legend. Ali was special. I actually met him when I was 15 years old, in Los Angeles. I was there on a family trip. He drove by – on Christmas Day – in a chestnut brown Rolls Royce. My mother waived. He stopped. We took pictures. A genuine gentleman. And proof that the one who is strongest is generally the humblest.
The How of Happiness: A New Approach to Getting the Life You Want
Fantastic book on positive psychology. Intelligently researched and overflowing with game-changing insights on how to calibrate your mindset for maximum performance. And produce a joyful existence.
The Essential Rumi
Pure poetry. When I’m in a soulful mood, this book is one of my favorites (along with The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran).
The Wisdom of Florence Scovel Shinn
Florence Scovel Shinn
Very metaphysical. Profoundly wise. You’ll have to tighten up your spiritual game to get the most out of this gem. It’s gloriously insightful and ever so valuable for anyone seriously into being unusually successful while also entering into the magic of life.
(My new book The 5 AM Club is a lot about this symmetry, of winning in the world yet inhabiting an alternate orbit full of awe, wonder and matchless joy. The book is now done and has been submitted to my publisher. I’ve given it all I have to give. I sweat every line for four years. Where it goes from here is up to the angels and gods of creativity, fate and destiny.)
This is the one book I brought with me on a big mountain ski trip to Leysin, Switzerland a few years ago. I’d ski dangerously hard all day and then, in the evenings in front of a fire and some epic raclette, I’d consume this little text – wise line by wise line. If you’re interested in elevating your service to the world, please give your most luminous self a beautiful present. And read this book. It reshaped me.