If we encounter a man of rare intellect, we should ask him what books he reads.
–Ralph Waldo Emerson
Books shape our worldview. It is true, that people have to change their perspectives and not their problems, because perspectives decides what is a problem or not. Let’s look at this, in the famous Biblical story of David and Goliath, while the Israelites were scared to hell, David was excited at the prospect- the reward of victory. While everyone was seeing a giant that was too big to fight, he saw a giant that was too big to miss! What does this teach? A clever lesson on paradigms, that the prevailing perspective of the masses in life is in reality not always clever.
Clearly, the best way to create a future is to create one yourself. Sounds cliché much?
These 5 books are going to give you a totally new outlook on life!
- 7 Habits of Highly Effective People – Stephen Covey
Covey’s book, published in 1989, is still as relevant now as it was when it was first published. And, it would interest you to note that, it’s the best seller in the category of self-help books of all time. Yes!Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly effective people teaches principles….
The list of principles are broadly summed up in 3 categories, independence, interdependence and continual improvement. Get yourself this book and you would certainly thank me later!
Here are the 7 habits listed:
- Be proactive
- Begin with the end in mind
- Put first things first
- Think win/win
- Seek first to understand then be understood
- Sharpen the saw
- 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership –John Maxwell
John Maxwell is currently the world’s leading voice on leadership. He’s literally become an authority on the subject of leadership. This book teaches you timeless and culturally relevant principles which could make a leader out of a nobody overnight. He does not claim that only 21 principles of leadership exist in the world. Definitely not. But what this books seeks to put out is that, there are 21 principles that no matter where a person is, situated anywhere in the world, cultural differences and geographical boundaries notwithstanding, these principles would work perfectly. For the American as it would for the Bangladeshi.
- Growth Mindset – Carol S. Dweck
“Well, maths is just not my thing.”
“I really can’t get any better at this.”
“This is far as I can get! I’ll call it quits!”
These words sound familiar? Like the kind that rings in your mind when you just think you’ve hit rock bottom.
This book by Carol S. Dweck is a life changer. Trust me, it is. It has entirely changed my whole outlook on life. Carol, is a Havard Professor. Her book details like none other, a revolutionary, in the way abilities have been viewed by psychologists in the past. Dweck, a psychology Professor at Stanford, expertly reveals the parallels between the prevailing mentality of a fixed mindset and a growth mindset. A shift from the traditional view that IQ is the single measure of ability to a more practical approach; character.Michael Phelps the legendary American swimmer was never as good as he was, Carol recounts. Born severely diagnosed with ADHD, Phelps overcame all criticism and lack faith from his coaches, by training every day. Yes! 7 days a week, 365 days a year. He did that since he was 14, till he finally competed in major completions. So, what is stopping you?
- How to Win Friends and Influence People – Dale Carnegie
Maybe, you were that guy who always terrible at making new friends. You never seem to know what it is about you that makes you “unlinked” in social settings. Top businessmen, distinguished business men know this secret. They know how to create and maintain the right relationships with people. Relationships are like a bridge. It needs a great deal of expertise for one to be engineered. This book will teach you how to make people buy into your ideas, your gifts your talents, whatever you have to sell out to people. Simply, it teaches you how to make an influence on people. That after a single, short conversation with anyone, the image of you is impinged on people’s minds.
- The Art of War – Sun Tzu
You know when this book was written? Two thousand, five hundred years ago! Yes! A book this old is still as relevant now as it was when it was first published. Know thyself and know thine enemy is one of the primary thoughts Sun Tzu emphasizes in his work of art.
There are moments when fighting is not the thing to do. If you would sit down and think properly. Leads us to the single thought focus and tact; twin thought. There are better ways to solve problems if only, you would take the time to think things through. You would realize you are indeed stronger than your opponent. The game of emotions does not win the war. It is child’s play. The craft of intelligence is the sword of the successful warrior.
“To win a hundred battles is not the art of skill but to subdue the enemy without fighting is”
So, as I have observed, the problem of the African is not witchcraft or any mystic, the problem lies in our “mindcraft”. And books, are the surest way to change our thinking, and transform us into that model of excellence our founding fathers pursued. Get addicted to books, give yourself to studying and in no time, when you speak, act, think, no one would be able to overlook you.
By: Elorm Quarshie [email protected]