You are what you read
We’re all familiar with the saying ‘you are what you eat’, but in business this is equally applicable to reading.
I find books a huge resource, the knowledge I gain through reading has helped to propel my business to the next level.
No matter what you’re trying to achieve in business, or your personal life, there’s a good chance someone else has ‘been there’ and ‘done that’. So, it makes sense to learn from their experiences – it’s like taking the fast track towards reaching your goals and avoids unnecessary stress along the way.
“But I don’t like reading …”
I’ve heard this many times and if reading isn’t your thing, you don’t need to miss out on this massive opportunity for learning and personal development. Audio books, whilst more expensive than their paper or digital counterparts, are accessible and becoming more popular. Audible is an app I recommend all the time, they have a huge choice of books and reasonably priced monthly subscriptions.
Personally, I have a variety of audio books and paper books on the go at any one time. I pick up a title that suits my place, mood, head space and energy level, let me explain that last bit …
How will books help me grow my small business and what should I be reading?
Primarily, this is down to what you want to achieve, but for me, I choose a variety of diverse titles that I can dip in and out of, to suit my frame of mind. For example, if it’s early in the morning and I have bags of energy and high attention I’ll probably pick up something like, Influence, The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert B. Cialdini – this title is packed with useful tips and I’ll want to take notes as I read. If I’m driving I’ll choose a title that doesn’t require my undivided attention, perhaps the audio version of a book I’ve previously read to reinforce the takeaways. If it’s late in the day and I want something to entertain or inspire me, I’ll likely pick up an autobiography or personal development title.
Audio, paper or e-book?
I’m greedy, I’ll take all three if it’s a title I really enjoy and will refer to again and again. I often start with the audio title and then, if there’s lots of takeaways I’ll buy the paper version and re-read it with my highlighter and tab stickers at the ready. By marking key points that resonate with me I can jump back to a book and scan through my own personal highlights by jumping between the tabs.
I love audio books for their easy consumption. Walking the dogs, doing the ironing or digging in the garden – I’ll have my headphones and I can immerse myself in The Chimp Paradox by Prof. Steve Peters or any of my other favourite titles.
E-books are fantastic for their portability. If you’re a regular commuter or traveller you can take a whole host of titles with you and they take up hardly any space in your luggage. I love Kindle and rarely go anywhere without it. Even meeting up with friends for a coffee, arrive early and you’ll have 15 minutes to enjoy a few pages of your favourite title with your favourite frothy beverage.