Some books at the top of my list

I’ve taken a bit of a break from playing games lately, and instead have been cranking through books.  A lot of this seems like “self help” or “empowerment” books, but I’ve chose to keep those silly things off of this list. Instead, I wanted to focus on books that actually offer some sort of practical and useful knowledge.  Here’s a few of them, and why I think they would be worth your time:

The Autobiography of Malcolm X

Malcolm X book cover

In honor of Martin Luther King Day tomorrow, I’m actually suggesting that you get to know another proactive African American leader of the time, Malcolm X.

This man did more by the age of 23 than most of us do in our lifetime. I suggest watching Spike Lee’s 1992 film, Malcolm X, first, as it really helped to engage me with the story and life of this man.

While he was certainly more radical in his ways than Martin Luther King, it’s still an interesting character study of a man who strives for change, recognizes his flaws along the way, and attempts to make amends before his untimely demise.
If you’ve ever wanted to understand what it was like to come from nothing, have everything against you, and still make a name for yourself, then this is an excellent place to start.

Trump – The Way To the Top

Trump the way to the top book coverSay what you want about Donald Trump; he still has some excellent books. This one in particular doesn’t seem to have any of his own words, but instead contains brief snippets of life and business advice from heads of many of the top organizations in the world. Even better, they are also all broken down into one line on each page, so you can quickly skim through and see what the gist of each page is.

You can get through this in less than two hours, and while it may not teach everyone something new, it can certainly help support notions you may previously had.

Power Talk: Using Language To Build Authority And Influence

Power Talk book cover


Years ago, an ex had once said to me “You’re so fake — you keep changing the way you talk around different people.” Initially it hurt, but it always stuck with me. I later realized, I wasn’t being fake; I was adapting to the situation. You wouldn’t speak to your boss the same way that you speak to your mother, or a young child. To empathize with individuals you need to be on the same level verbally, otherwise you’ll feel a disconnect and alienate the other person.

This is one of the best books I’ve come across, in terms of understanding the dynamics of language and how it affects our everyday actions. Author Sarah Myers uses practical examples to help the reader understand why or how a certain approach is necessary. 

Everything you do communicates to others, where it’s physical or verbal; our language is everywhere. While the book title contains the words “authority and influence”, as though those are power words, it also covers passive ways of conveying information, so that all sides feel equal and are open to a conversation.

7 Habits of Highly Effective People

The_7_Habits_of_Highly_Effective_People book cover

While this book gets a bit too abstract for me at times, it still does an excellent job of illustrating the traits and habits that make people effective. It’s not always about efficiency, but finding happiness with your current situation. Time and money don’t equal happiness, but being a well rounded person who is satisfied with how they are perceived by their friends, family, and peers is largely what it comes down to.

Much of the information here covers how to be proactive, instead of reactive, and take control of your life.

Let me know what you think about these, and I’m open to any all recommendations as well.




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