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A Few Good Reads

Darri left a comment to my last post about “The Dip” asking what some of my favorite books are. This post isn’t about my all-time favorite books, but rather about books that I’ve read recently and have enjoyed. Here are five that I particularly like right now.

The Dip. I just wrote about it and I’m going through my own exercise right now to figure out what things in my life are worth slogging through the dip for, and which things I should cut loose from. A short and very good book that applies to personal development and business. It’s all about being deliberate in doing certain things well (and pushing through “the dip” that happens when times get tough), and quitting those things that aren’t bound to be productive to your life.

Made to Stick. I read this book as part of a marketing leadership development I’m in at work. It’s all about storytelling. While geared for business professionals, the book applies equally to how we talk about and present ourselves every day to family, friends or co-workers. The book is an easy read and there are quite a few case studies that bring the text to life.

Think and Grow Rich. This is a classic but I’ve put off reading it for many years. It’s the foundation for many other personal development books and systems that have come about over the years. Napolean Hill studied the success characteristics from the world’s most successful people for decades on behalf of his benefactor, Andrew Carnegie. It was written years ago but is highly relevant. Highly recommended.

Tribes. Another Seth Godin book, and also very short but very good (it is really hard to write short books, I commend Seth for doing this!). This book is all about communities, and how we are ALL empowered to lead a community (if we so choose). Be it a community group, church group, meetup group, peer group or any other community….the world needs leaders now. Are you up for the challenge? Best of all, you can download the audio version of the book for FREE from audible!

Journey to the Heart. This is a book of daily reflections/meditations that I use frequently when teaching my yoga classes. The readings are powerful and very well put.

Ultramarathon Man. I haven’t read this book <yet> but it is next on my list. Dean Karnazes likes to run…to the point of frequently running ultramarathons lasting over 100 miles (or longer) over rugged terrain. He also completed 50 marathons in 50 states in 50 days last year (this is covered in his most recent book – “50/50”). Some people like to call him crazy, but I think we all can learn something from his focus, dedication and sheer tenacity.

What books have you read recently and really enjoyed? Please leave a note in the comments, I’m always looking for good book recommendations!


  1. KJ says:

    Thanks for the list Ravi!

    Will definitely check them out. I just read “The Dip” on your last recommendation. For myself, the tone of the boo didn’t completely mesh, but I did pick up a lot on realizing I need to push myself harder. to gain more rewards. When I weight lift, I never looked forward to the end of the set, but now I’m going to try to reverse my outlook to anticipate and push through the end of the set.

    not completely related, but here’s a great video i found that has also been inspirational to me:

  2. ultrarunner says:

    I like to read books that are old enough to be in the public domain. I find that they many times contain pearls of wisdom, they generally help to improve my vocabulary and usage and sense of style, and, therefore, my own writing, and they are free, abundant, and available on the Internet.

    Two great general public domain book sites are:

    Project Gutenberg: http://www.gutenberg.org/wiki/Main_Page


    The Online Books Page: http://onlinebooks.library.upenn.edu/

    One of my favourite books is As A Man Thinketh, by James Allen, published in 1902.

    “Man is made or unmade by himself; in the armory of thought he forges the weapons by which he destroys himself. He also fashions the tools with which he builds for himself heavenly mansions of joy and strength and peace. By the right choice and true application of thought, man ascends to the Divine Perfection; by the abuse and wrong application of thought, he descends below the level of the beast. Between these two extremes are all the grades of character, and man is their maker and master.”

    I get from this book the same sense of personal power (and personal responsibility) that I believe Jesus taught about in such lessons as:

    “I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” Matthew 17:20

    I believe we were created in God’s image, and that that means we were created to be mini-Creators, and that we create by power of thought (faith). The faith is not faith in God, per se, but faith that God has given US the power to do anything, if we only believe.

    I credit Allen’s book as the inspiration for my being able to eliminate illness entirely from my life. I just don’t believe in it now for me, and it just doesn’t ever materialize. Good word that ‘materialize’, think about what it means and implies.

    Another good source of books is the Soil and Health Library site.

    Especially the social criticism of Ralph Borsodi and the books on living in peace by Annie Payson Call (written at the beginning of the 20th Century, and sometimes for “ladies’ journals”, but still full of wisdom).

    “So universal is the habit of blaming circumstances or other people for the troubles of our own lives that I know a strong assertion of the fact that the source of all trouble lies entirely within ourselves will meet with contradiction and resentment from many readers. It takes courage to look to one’s self entirely for pain which seems to be caused by others, but if once we do it, and are thoroughly clean-cut about it in every thought and word and action, the release from bondage seems almost miraculous.” Preface, How To Live Quietly.

    From her books, one thing I learned is that to attempt to control another human being, in any way, is tantamount to converting that person into an animal in your mind. The liberation from the need or desire to control others that comes with that realisation is pure joy.

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