020-2019 How to Win Friends and Influence People

Title: How to Win Friends and Influence People

Author: Dale Carnegie

One recommendation I heard from the grand mister Warren Buffet was that he took a public speaking course somewhere called the Carnegie Institute (correct me if the name is not right). On another video I watched it recommended nine books that every individual should read at least once. And that was where I heard of this book, written by Dale Carnegie.

I would say that I am 90% made up of introvertism, maybe even more, and only 10% extroverted, and this only shows up when I am with friends. When we talk about complete strangers, then my introvertism shoots up even higher to 98%, with the 2% extrovertism relating to only asking a stranger for directions 🙂 . Now, taking this book, I feel that I could improve that ratio to become more extroverted, and possibly get a little more out of life.

What is great about the lessons it teaches in the book, is that many of us can relate to many similar/equal real-life experiences we have faced, and now see that we could have actually addressed those situations in a different manner. I definitely got that feeling with many of the chapters.

As the book notes to the reader, it’s very true that we are more interested in ourselves than in anyone else. But that’s where the book wants to tell you that you should also step back and become more interested in the people around you. I had this lecture being given to me by my parent, but never really took much notice from it. Now, having had a chance to gain life experience, I can reflect with more value on the book as it readily pointed out what many of us are doing wrong, and how we can improve on our habits to enjoy life a little better.

The true value isn’t derived by those who merely read the book, but by those who study it and apply it to their lives, and constantly going back to revise. By constantly learning, you are getting more out of these lessons than you might have without applying them at all.

The lessons that are taught are not restricted to any age, but are applicable from an early age. The lessons are also not limited to our personal lives, but are also valid in our professional lives.

Rating:

The rating was definitely not difficult to determine, because the value that I derived is tremendously valuable, and will be valuable to everyone else that wants to get their own copy of the book. The book definitely goes onto my few 5.9/5 books.

015-2019 The discomfort zone

Book: The [dis] comfort zone (how to get what you want by living fearlessly)

Author: Farrah Storr

What kind of approach would you like a book to follow when it teaches you about personal development? Maybe the one where they just tell you what you should change, and then which corresponding changes should come about? Or, perhaps the one where the author tells the reader about how they experienced the changes themselves, along with all the struggles, hurdles and bumps along the way?

If you’re looking for the latter, I believe this book is one for you.

It’s written in a conversational tone, just like when you were to sit right opposite each other. The message the author wishes to transfer is very clear and understandable from the way the book is written, and pulls from real-life experiences. It doesn’t go as deep as philosophy, where we might lose the thread along the way. I felt like I was with the author and writing down their story.

The author introduces their own method, called the BMD method, which stands for ‘Brief Moments of Discomfort’. We all have them, and sometimes multiple times a day. Yet, we try and get comfortable again, and thus try to avoid to confront those moments by any means possible.

This is where the author brings in her personal experience (as well as those from other people) who have been faced with these BMD, yet didn’t shy away, but rather approached them as challenges. Also, the reaction to them (ie. seeing them as a challenge, panicking, over-reacting, etc.) is what ultimately determines how we approach new challenges in our lives. The author decided to confront them as a challenge, and thus went through new experiences that made her life better.

So the grand message the author wishes to transmit is that we shouldn’t shy back from these BMDs, because some of them have something great on the other side for us.

Rating:

Loved the writing style, the easy examples she used to explain her message, and the simple steps one in general needs to follow to also apply this to one’s own life. I think it deserves a top 4.8/5

Have fun with!

010-2019 Leadership and self-deception

Book Title: Leadership and self-deception (getting out of the box)

Author: The Arbinger Institute

Another great addition to my book collection (yes, I’m building one, and suggest you should too 🙂 ) is this great book right here. One of the biggest trends we see in business these days is that we are moving away from closed-door offices, and more towards open office plans. If you don’t know what I’m talking about here, it basically refers to removing the walls between us in the offices.

I myself have worked in different business environments to see that the private sector businesses have already implemented this to a large extent, whereas in the public sector it remains relatively the same as the old way, ie. close-door policy. With this I’m in no way saying that it is a bad thing, I just think that in the private sector they tend to try and incorporate whatever they believe can improve the business and make the personnel more efficient,

Coming back to the book, you will have seen that the book’s author is the Arbinger Institute. If you don’t know who they are, or what they do, the quick solution to that question (which I read up on their website just now) is that want to provide training to shift the ‘self-focus of an inward mind-set to an outward mindset’. Basically, give training so that you work more effectively with other people and less by yourself. For more, you can read up on the following website: https://arbinger.com . Otherwise, you can just type in ‘Arbinger Institute’ into Google and you should find it there, for those that don’t like clicking links (guilty as well).

The book is relatively small, being about 170 pager. So it shouldn’t take you as long as some other 290 – 450 pagers that seem to take forever (especially if you lose interest in the topic somewhere in the beginning).

The writing style is one thing that is brilliant about the book, because it doesn’t try and give you the theory about the book only and some quick pieces of examples. Rather, it gives you the plot of an executive having a meeting/interview/discussion with one of its senior managers. Therefore, as you read every chapter of the book, it follows the progress of the meeting/interview/discussion of the parties.

Also, it teaches the methodology very slowly and clearly. Therefore, it makes sure that the reader properly follows the thread of the theory that they wish to convey to you.

To give a brief overview how I understood the theory, we encounter a scenario, we can act in one of two ways (act upon it, or not act upon it) and when we chose not to act upon it we have self-betrayed ourselves (because we feel that we rather should have acted upon it, so we start feeling guilty), but then, to escape this, we look for reasons that justify our in-action to be a valid choice (by seeing ourselves as being the victims and everyone else as the guilty party), and thus shifting our guilt away. At this point you have gone into the box.

Now, you may not completely understand the full message from my brief paragraph, but if it were simple to explain the book could have been much much shorter.

So, the book properly explains how we encounter these types of situations (in both the professional and personal aspects of our lives) and then shows us how we can get out of the box.

You don’t need to take my word for it, but, after reading the book, I started to think a minute longer for any situation I encounter, before I take action. I am now, more than ever, aware of when I get into the box, and how I can get out of it as well.

For anyone that is looking for a book that can assist with personal development, I would highly recommend this book to you.

Rating:

For the value that it gives to the reader, as well as the writing style the author uses to teach the theory to the reader, on my scale it definitely deserves a 6/5.

Happy reading !!!!!!