To close out the year, I thought I'd tell you about some interesting stuff I read or listen to. Without further ado, let's start with some books.
I am a huge fan of fantasy books and I discovered Brent Weeks only this year. I was hugely entertained by the Night Angel trilogy. Some folks might turn up their nose on these masala kinda books but I like to mix it up between rather serious and deep world/character building stuff with these breezy reads as well.
Matt Haig's The Midnight Library is another that struck a chord.
Between life and death there is a library, and within that library, the shelves go on forever. Every book provides a chance to try another life you could have lived. To see how things would be if you had made other choices . . . Would you have done anything different, if you had the chance to undo your regrets? A novel about all the choices that go into a life well lived.
Business and Leadership
Bill Walsh's The Score Takes Care of Itself was an important read. It reiterates the message that the philosophy, values, and purpose that you set matter a lot more than anything else. It is less about innovative tactics or training plans and more about mission and the buy-in and being a team.
John Wooden and Bill Walsh built multiple teams that were successful for long periods. And the common threads run deep.
As The Quad enters its second decade, building the team and honing my leadership skills is always on top of my mind. And a significant learning has been that it is not about building the best team on paper but a lot more than that.
Nobody needs telling there isn’t enough time. We’re obsessed with our lengthening to-do lists, our overfilled inboxes, work-life balance, and the ceaseless battle against distraction; and we’re deluged with advice on becoming more productive and efficient, and “life hacks” to optimize our days. But such techniques often end up making things worse. The sense of anxious hurry grows more intense, and still the most meaningful parts of life seem to lie just beyond the horizon. Still, we rarely make the connection between our daily struggles with time and the ultimate time management problem: the challenge of how best to use our four thousand weeks.
Rather than being a book of yet-another time management system, the author goes deeper into the problem. What if we are looking at this wrong?
This year has been one of me figuring out my work day, as I changed it rather dramatically when compared to the past 10 years. After attempting various systems of efficiency and being dissatisfied with all of them, this book caught me at the right time. As always, the books that make the deepest impression on you are the ones that feel like someone reached inside your head and wrote down (in excellent fashion) the hazy thoughts floating around in your brain.
I don't think I've read poetry until now. I've tried - from David Whyte to Keats and Yeats and Longfellow and Tagore. But never had the patience or the appreciation for them.
And I came across this one, Inquire Within. Loved it. And maybe now, I will revisit the classics and see if they make more sense.
That's it from me. I'd love to hear your favourite books of the year.
You have a good last week of the year, and I'll see you in 2023!