In January, I read five books. In February, I graduated to seven books. This month, I read or listened to nine books. This month, my top book was Get Up! by Dr. James Levine. The epidemic of obesity and other diseases have direct ties to inactivity and Dr. Levine highlights his own research journey to understanding this devastating epidemic. This book was eye-opening for me as a workplace planner and strategist and gave me a renewed passion for creating workspaces that engage employees and help them fight these epidemics.
I also run Dave's Book Club – an email-based book club where I share one book that I have read and found fascinating. It is free to sign up and there are some enhancements coming soon that you won't want to miss!
The nine books I read this month cover topics including research, productivity, fiction, self-discipline, leadership and personal growth. These days I listen to more books on audio (Audible) then read on the iPad (Kindle) or a physical book simply because I am on the road frequently. However you consume books, I hope you will find some good reads here.
March 2015 Books
- Get Up! – Dr. James Levine
This book contains some of the most comprehensive research on the subject of obesity and inactivity. Levine has an engaging writing style that helps you associate the research with the practical aspects of why inactivity leads to greater heath risks. Specifically, this book focuses on the chair as a means of keeping people inactive and more prone to obesity. What I found particularly interesting was the research associated with a growing obesity epidemic outside of North America. North America still leads all obesity statistics, but the it is no longer isolated to North America. The book highlights the $7,000 pair of underwear he helped develop to measure inactivity, his “big ask” of Apple, a strong partnership with Nike that led the to the Nike Fuelband and the first classroom of the future developed entirely by school children. If you geek out on statistics, research and want to figure out how you can get off the couch and do more than this is your book. This will also be a future feature book in Dave's Book Club.
- Ask It – Andy Stanley
Ask It focuses on the one question that will reshape all of your decisions. You need to only ask this one question when faced with a tough decision, a job change, a relationship and so much more. The underpinning of this question is found in the Bible. Andy shares how he came to ask this question and why he believes it will guide you through life's changes. I'm not going to give away the question, but I can tell you that after reading this book I was more aware of the reasons I was making a decision and if it was the best for me at this particular time. I highly encourage you to read this book – it is for everyone, not just the church-goer.
- The Miracle Morning – Hal Elrod
Hal Elrod was involved in a life-threatening car accident that left him questioning the future for him. He had a good outlook on life, but he still found himself being lazy and not wanting to do anything. It took the challenge of a close friend to kick start him into a better version of himself. He took the time to develop a morning routine that literally saved his life. Each morning he focuses on preparing himself to be successful for the day ahead. Each morning, he meditates, reads and visualizes (along with other things). His morning routine has helped others turn their mornings into high productivity. The success stories of the miracle morning include weight loss, starting and growing businesses, changing jobs, finding love and more. I found this book helpful in guiding me to kickstart my mornings and see the value of a morning routine or ritual.
- How To Build Self-Discipline – Martin Meadows
This book focuses on the science and emotion of building a life of self-discipline. The author shares what has worked for him and some techniques might scare you (long-time fasting and cold showers). Habits are the name of the game and self-discipline is built on those principles. If you are looking to make a change or struggling with the change, check this book out. Martin has provided a good resource that is baked in research and experience; however, what worked for him might not work for you. The key is to be open-minded. This book also addresses happiness, decision fatigue, and cravings. What I like the most about this book are the summaries at the end of each chapter. These are great resources to put in front of you to help you make that lasting change.
- Jumpstart Your Leadership – John C. Maxwell
Jumpstart Your Leadership is a collection of John Maxwell's best leadership advice for the new leader. This book takes you through the first 90 days of your new leadership adventure. John provides you a step-by-step to grow your leadership over the next 90 days. Learning a new team and job can be difficult especially if this is your first foray into a leadership role. Take the time to grow yourself so that you can help lead your team to new heights. If you have read other works by John Maxwell (Developing The Leader Within You, The 360° Leader, The 5 Levels of Leadership, Everyone Communicates, Few Connect), you might find this book too basic for your needs. This book is really targeted at new leaders.
In The Lost Ark, the search for Noah's Ark is front and center in the book. When an attractive young woman (Faye Roberts) enters a bar looking for a guide to Mt. Ararat, Sam Ward decides to help her search for her missing father. Sam believes Faye's father is dead, but as the story unfolds we come face-to-face with her missing father. This book has the feel of a decent spy thriller, but the ending leaves the reader wondering what just happened. All-in-all, if you are looking for a decent fiction read and you like spy thrillers, you may like this read.
- Are You Living or Existing? – Kimanzi Constable
Do you want to live your dreams or merely dream about them? If your answer is yes – then this book is for you. Constable shares his own story of moving from bread delivery guy to breadmaker. He shares his desire to move to Hawaii and live out his dreams. You need a plan and Kimanzi provides a nine-step plan for making your dreams come to life. When you have a plan you need to execute the plan. You often will need to sacrifice something (time, money) to help make it come to life, but when it all works out and you are living your dream you can help others achieve the same thing. If you want to move from existing to living, check out this book.
- Grit: How to Keep Going When You Want To Give Up – Martin Meadows
Learning to perservere is the name of the game in this book. Marin brings his signature research and experience in this book. The truth is you can learn grit and you can learn the habits that help you win the war against giving up. To begin the fight against “giving up”, you have to ask yourself one question – do I want to continue. This one question will help define your journey to developing grit. Along the way, you will learn about mental toughness, habit formation, the ways we sabatoge ourselves, the impact of smiling and so much more. This book can be read on its own or as a companion to How To Build Self-Discipline (see above). If this is something you want to learn than check out this book.
- Shave 10 Hours Off Your Workweek (ebook) – Michael Hyatt
Michael gives you fifty pages of practical and research filled tips for knocking ten hours off your work week. Many of the tips and tricks can be applied instantaneously like creating email templates, learning how to say “no”, taking a nap and getting a few extra hours of sleep. Other activities like re-working your calendar need a little more time to implement as they require you to really dig in and see what you should do and what you need to do – the idea of the important and urgent. This ebook is only available by subscribing to Michael's email list from his website and it absolutely free. There is so much information packed in this ebook that I will need to take another read through it just to grasp all of the information.
I hope you enjoy these books.
Question: What book or books did you read in March? You can leave a comment by clicking here.
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