Sometimes you just have to take that time and do something you really like! And that can be going for a long walk, reading a nice book or writing an article for your blog, even though you feel like there is too little time for those pleasures.
I do not yet know how many books I will list here, but to make it practical, I am going to stick to some basic information on the title and one reason why you would benefit from reading it. I started my 2020 with:
“Talking to Strangers” 2019
Why? This book motivates you to think aside of what is obvious. Are there really always racial issues behind deaths caused by the police when the officer is white and the victim is black? And how responsible is too much alcohol for a rape? These and many other interesting questions you will see answered in a new light by Malcolm Gladwell.
“Couchsurfing in China” 2019
Why? I just love people looking at China with our Western eyes and describing their intercultural interactions in a humorous way, although the book articulates some serious matters. It is a funny way of approaching China and even sinologists can be amused when being reminded of their own stories.
“Chinas Bosse: Unsere unbekannten Konkurrenten” (2018)
This book offers a very well written description of who is who and also what is what in China, while we in the West are often unaware of the development and shere sizes of Chinese businesses. The storytelling is exceptionally appealing and if you can read German and would like to deepen your insight into Chinese economics in a human way, this book will teach you some lessons.
“The Compound Effect” (2010)
This was my first coaching book this year and I loved it. So simple, so definite and true. By starting somewhere and building continuously you reach at least your goal, if not more. I use the compound technique in my coachings, too.
“The Coaching Habit” 2016
Michael Bungay Stanier
This book gives you a basic introduction into working with leadership roles. It helps you identify their role problem and to ask your clients the right questions, which in turn they should learn to apply on their teams. What I liked most, is the enforcement of overdoing things and not letting your team work by themselves, a problem many leaders encounter. Therefore afterwards I read again “The Culture Code” which I encountered in 2018, talking about the importance of establishing trust in your team.
The author wrote this book in his changing phase where he had to prepare himself to give away power and trust others. He shares with us that the only constant thing in business is developing principles by establishing them, testing them, sticking to them when they work and revise them when they don’t. I found it one of the most inspiring books I have ever read, because it gave me a new insight into the capacity of being rigorous at some point in business and that not everything has to be a team based decision.
“The Laws of Human Nature” 2018
Even though I would not agree with all of its outcomings, this book was a great inspiration when looking at myself and the acts of other people. Basically this book tries to prepare you for the hard reality you encounter when working with others and how to identify different types of narcissist behavior in people and best and worst of all, you will also be motivated by the author to apply what you learned to your advantage. This book reminds me of not reacting too fast and observing first what has happened.
“Creating Mindful Leaders” (2018)
An amazing way to proceed after reading the previous title. Simply deepening the idea of mindfulness in leadership and as a human being from a very human perspective. It kind of helps you to see the world in a positive light again, after having been disillusioned by Robert Greene.
“My Voice Will Go With You: The Teaching Tales of Milton H. Erickson” (1982)
There is an updated version of this book where Rosen, a close disciple of the wonderful psychiatrist Milton Erickson and how he practiced his profession. Simply amazing and surprisingly the book that in this phase of my life mostly opened my perception on people’s behavior and how to help them solve their problems.
“How Forests Think” (2013)
I was looking for a book that would explain the forest to me, so I could deepen my knowledge on the understanding of how it works. The author Kohn is an anthropologist working really respectfully with people, animals and the forest to show our interconnection in behavioral cycles and how we are interdependent. I may not have found what I was looking for, but I found more. This book helps me to see again the things I once knew.
“Thinking in Systems”
Donella H. Meadows
With this book I am finishing 2020. In the last years of my life I became more and more aware of systems in our society, how we have systems which feed themselves. So, I was looking for content that would give me a more scientific, holistic insight. Still not through this one, but I love it and already got another one for a friend of mine.
All in all these are the nicest books I have read in 2020 and I hope that you find some inspiration for your next purchase!
Have a good read!