Category: Book Reviews

[21/52] The Lorax by Dr. Seuss

[21/52] The Lorax by Dr. Seuss

I could not resist reading yet another children book of Dr Seuss. I am glad I picked up The Lorax.

The Lorax has a profound message told in simplest form. Rapid consumption of natural resources to bring products to market faster is a wide spread today. Most often today, Marketing drives a demand and hence production. It’s not a big surprise we end up buying stuff we don’t need.

The cutting down of Truffula trees made me realise, how costly organic vegetable and fruits have become. The commercially grown or “manufactured” vegetables and fruits are much cheaper!

If every child read this book multiple times during their childhood in India at least, I am sure many would have grown to handle large scale problems such as shown in this book.

You can find this book on Goodreads here.

[18/52] Inner Engineering: A Yogi’s Guide to Joy

[18/52] Inner Engineering: A Yogi’s Guide to Joy

It is said that you need to have an inclination to Spirituality willingly then you become aware of its presence. Sadhguru’s book has been pivotal for my Spiritual growth, and I think it is going to remain forever ingrained within me. The knowledge I got from this book has intensified my determination to continue my Spiritual Journey and practise it daily.

I knew I was always a Spiritual person and this book heightened the belief I have. Of course, there are talks about Spirituality being some mumbo jumbo thing, but there is more science to it than we can even Imagine.

I was always skeptic of why I got angry or even reacted to a particular situation or a person.  I realised that anger is unintelligent and dealing with it has become much simpler.

The belief I had in Yoga has deepened, and I now know, why this age old science is so much relevant even today. Simple practices if done properly can benefit you immediately. If simple poses can do this, imagine the magnitude it can impact if you practise daily and cover at minimum the beginner poses. I have started practising Yoga from my childhood, but I was doing it without a purpose, and I lost touch with it as I grew. Now I know the “Why” of Yoga.

Bowing down to elders was always a mystery to me, I always did it without much thought as I felt right doing it. Now it does shatter some of the modern belief systems, but this simple practice has a much deeper meaning than I thought. Bowing down is an indicator of the arrogance we have within ourselves. We can find many things much more intelligent than us as Human beings in general. When we bow down, we are just humble to the greater intelligence that exists that we are not aware. Of course bowing down is a symbolic gesture but you bow down to anything living or non-living and still be humble.

“Your joy, your misery, your love, your agony, your bliss, lies in your hands. There is a way out. And the way out is in.  ”

– Sadhguru

You must read this book if you want to strengthen your Spiritual Journey.

You can find it on Goodreads here.

 

[17/52] Old Man and the Sea – Ernest Hemingway

[17/52] Old Man and the Sea – Ernest Hemingway

Hemingway was only a Grammar App for me till I read his book Old Man and the Sea.

When I started reading the first few pages, I found the description to be very vivid, as if it was happening to me. I could feel the disappointment, the hunger and the motivation of the Old Man to catch a fish the following day.

I had never imagined a fight with the Sea or a Fish. Hemingway described the fight as if someone was playing a first person X-Box game. The battle with the fish was engaging, and I could feel every wound and pain the Old Man endured during the fight.

Once he had caught the fish and sharks took it all away, Hemingway poignantly described how the Old Man felt.

The Old Man and the Sea book is going into my Favourite reads.

A must read for everyone who loves vivid storytelling with attention to detail.

You can find it on Goodreads here.

[16/52] The Diary of a Wimpy Kid – Double Down – by Jeff Kinney

[16/52] The Diary of a Wimpy Kid – Double Down – by Jeff Kinney

I saw a whole shelf filled with the series of The Diary of the Wimpy Kid. I picked up a book randomly, and it turned out to be Doble Down. I enjoyed the first few pages because of the imagination the kid showed.

When I read the first few pages, I realized the level of creativity we have during out childhood. If we acted on anyone of them with consistency, it would have boosted our confidence drastically. I forgot what it was like to be a kid and let your mind wonder to any direction you set it to be. Our thinking is unlimited.

I enjoyed every bit of the book and even gave me the confidence to express all the things that I am imagining.

I would not recommend this to you are an “adult” who does not read children books. If you are open to reading a children book, please read it!

You can find this book on Goodreads here.

[15/52] All Marketers Are Liars – By Seth Godin

[15/52] All Marketers Are Liars – By Seth Godin

When I started reading Seth Godin’s Purple Cow, I had no idea what I would learn from it. A few chapters later I realised the importance of making something remarkable – The Purple Cow. The Purple Cow will give you insights on how to make your product or service remarkable.

In the book, All Marketers Are Liars Seth Godin brings out the importance of telling stories. We all believe is stories and are most often take decisions on the worldviews we believe. Our worldview is the reason we trust brands, or we don’t. We may have different brands of mobile, but we pick one brand whose story is believable to us. We may think it’s the mobile features we base our decisions. But in reality, we only believe a story told by the brand.

Being authentic about the story you tell about your product or service is helps you makes profits. Don’t just tell a story because it sounds cool. You need live that story, and your customers must get the story with every interaction they have with you. You know you are doing it right when the spreads and people start telling it to others.

It makes sense, Storytelling is the oldest form of marketing, and it still works today. Although this book is about marketers, the content of the book works for a person who wants to stand out in this competitive world. We need to brand out selves and tell a story about ourselves while being authentic about it. If we all tried to behave in a similar way, we would just become mediocre.

I suggest you read this book get a good understanding of why stories are important and the need of it being authentic.

You can find this book on Goodreads here.

[Book 14/52] Managing Time by HBR

[Book 14/52] Managing Time by HBR

I have always been a master procrastinator. The reasons I procrastinated are:

  1. I don’t want to do it
  2. I am not good at doing it
  3. I find it too laborious

Managing Time me deconstruct my procrastinator mind and helped understand what I need to when I stuck in the reasons mentioned above.

It was suggested in this book, that I keep track of my time based on various categories for two weeks. Using this data, I could organise and create targets of where I want to spend my time most. I cut short my lunch times, which is by choice. I also planned for a 20-minute nap post lunch which kept me productive for the rest of the day.

I realised that just by tracking time I could be more focused at work and stay away from distractions. The moment I was distracted I felt guilty of noting down a wasted time. During the waiting period, I used to focus on some training material, and that wait could squeeze in learning during the work days.

Being a perfectionist, I always loose interest in something that I plan and things don’t turn out the way I planned. When this happened, which was always, I used to get demotivated. The managing time book made me understand that it’s ok to deviate from what you planned to do. The idea is to keep improving the system. Only when you stick to tracking your time efficiently, will you be able to set goals for tasks.

If you are a person, who if often tired of making a decision on what tasks to do when – this book is for you. You can read this book under 20 minutes but its essential you track your time religiously for three weeks to reap the maximum benefits of this book.

Save some time and go home early!

You can find this book on Goodreads here.

 

[Book 13/52] Managing Up by HBR

[Book 13/52] Managing Up by HBR

Navigating negotiations and handling disagreements has always been a difficult task for me. I guess its more to do with my personality type which has a lot of empathy.

Post reading Managing Up I realised that there are simpler ways to handle negotiations and express disagreements.

It all boils down to knowing your Boss and his priorities. Knowing you organisational goals while speaking to your Boss can always take discussions in a proper direction. Setting your expectations and having a detailed understanding of what you must deliver, helps you align with your Boss.

Managing Up gives you tips which can be used to communicate disagreements effectively. Also, making the conversations more “we” centric than “you” centric changes the way we communicate.

I liked the last chapter which is about monitoring the relationships. It has ten questions which can be used to review the state of your relationship with you Boss. It helps you take immediate corrective actions.

It also gives a scenario on what should you do if you are dealing with a toxic Boss.

You can read this book within 20 minutes.

Find this book on Goodreads here.