5 Life-Changing Books To Teach You 5 Powerful Life Skills

5 Life-Changing Books To Teach You 5 Powerful Life Skills
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Learn from other’s people’s failures and pave your way to success.

If you read for self-improvement, you’ve undoubtedly encountered books that changed your life forever.

Here are the five books that taught me some valuable life lessons I practice daily.

Everyone passionate reader should read these books at least once, especially if you're feeling lost or want to transform your life.

1. The Courage to be Disliked by Ichiro Kishimi and Fumitake Koga

Image: Goodreads

We get so entangled with pleasing others and feeding their expectations that we lose ourselves.

The Courage to be Disliked is a Japanese philosophy book that teaches us to embrace our authentic selves fearlessly.

Humans don’t know the power they hold owing to their limiting beliefs. This book teaches us how to liberate ourselves, change our lives, and find happiness.

The authors have discussed the theories of Austrian psychotherapist Alfred Adler on how we can control our future. We’re free to choose our desired path without giving in to self-doubt or thinking about others' expectations.

The biggest lesson from the book

Live a life that’s true to your core values, not the one that others expect from you.

Sometimes we need to take that leap of faith and do things that make us peaceful, even if it doesn’t please people around us. Nobody’s going to remember your existence forever. So have the courage to be disliked and keep doing what you’re supposed to do.

My favorite lines from The Courage to be Disliked are

“The more one is praised by another person, the more one forms the belief that one has no ability. Please do your best to remember this.”
“But is being normal, being ordinary, really such a bad thing? Is it something inferior? Or, in truth, isn’t everybody normal?”
“But if you are afraid to have confidence in others, in the long run, you will not be able to build deep relationships with anyone.”

2. When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi

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If I’m asked about the most heart-touching memoir I’ve ever read, it would be When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi.

A young neurosurgeon diagnosed with cancer shares his experiences through this book.

You’ll be compelled to introspect on what makes life worth living. The memoir shows Kalanithi’s journey from a naive medical student to a neurosurgeon at Stanford, recounting his story from the death bed.

He had a wholesome future with his wife and kid, but destiny had other plans for him. He was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer and breathed his last in March 2015 while working on this book. When Breath Becomes Air is an unforgettable story of a brilliant doctor and a writer who lost the battle of life.

The biggest lesson from the book

I realized the unpredictability of life through the author’s words.

Most of us live in the past or future, which is meaningless.

Life is short and is meant to be lived in the present moment. Be grateful for what you have and make the most of it.

My favorite lines from When Breath Becomes Air

“You can’t ever reach perfection, but you can believe in an asymptote toward which you are ceaselessly striving.”

“Human knowledge is never contained in one person. It grows from the relationships we create between each other and the world, and still, it is never complete.”

3. Predictably Irrational by Dan Ariely

Image: Goodreads

Do you think the small decisions you make every day might be irrational?

Predictably Irrational is an interesting book that made me rethink how I interact with the world. The author explains through experiments and behavioral research that we make astonishingly irrational daily decisions.

The nature of these silly mistakes is predictable in most of us.

The book tells us how emotions, social norms, and other invisible forces alter our reasoning abilities. At its core, human nature is incredibly predictable. This is why we return for second helpings in an unlimited buffet and eat a lavish meal but use coupons to save a few cents.

The author talks about how to break these patterns and make better decisions in everyday life. If you’re an entrepreneur, you can use this book as a case study on how to make people purchase your products or services.

The biggest lesson from the book

People usually overpay, procrastinate, and underestimate themselves under the influence of emotions.

This book taught me how to regulate my emotions while deciding and analyze others’ emotions to manipulate their choices in my favor.

It’s a fun book that teaches behavioral science without going too deep into the jargon. You will never have to worry about earning money, as reading this book will help you better understand your client’s emotions.

My favorite lines from Predictably Irrational

“Individuals are honest only to the extent that suits them (including their desire to please others)”
“Giving up on our long-term goals for immediate gratification, my friends, is procrastination.”
“we usually think of ourselves as sitting the driver’s seat, with ultimate control over the decisions we made and the direction our life takes; but, alas, this perception has more to do with our desires-with how we want to view ourselves-than with reality”

4. No Rules Rules, Reed Hastings and Erin Meyer

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Netflix is a revolution in the entertainment industry.

It has become an integral part of our lives and one of the most unorthodox and successful companies.

In a quest to know more about the brilliant minds behind Netflix and how this company, initially launched as an online DVD rental service, has reached millions of people in 190 countries, I was drawn to read this book.

Netflix has always relied on unconventional ways to adapt and innovate per users' needs. It was impossible without the unique management principles that the cofounder Reed Hastings discusses in the book.

Hastings was determined to build an adaptive culture focused on freedom and responsibility. We all know that Netflix has set standards for valuing the possibilities in their employees, giving them control, and working on innovation.

No Rules Rules is a beautiful book summarizing the untold stories of trial and error when Netflix was launched and its journey to becoming one of the world’s most successful brands.

The biggest lesson from the book

The most important reason companies like Netflix are top is that they hire the best. Thinking about your long-term goals and valuing quality over quantity is the point.

Even if you have to pay 10x the market rate, hire only the best candidates. Don’t try to cut expenses and save money on human resources now if you dream of making colossal revenue later on.

Building a stellar team is only 50% of the job done toward your dream. Making it work needs lots of bold managerial decisions.

My favorite lines from No Rules Rules

“Lead with context, not control,” and coaching your employees using such guidelines as, “Don’t seek to please your boss.”
“If you give employees more freedom instead of developing processes to prevent them from exercising their own judgment, they will make better decisions and it’s easier to hold them accountable.”

4. Almanack of Naval Ravikant, by Eric Jorgenson

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Living a fulfilling life is not just about luck.

Most successful people have attained the skills of building wealth and happiness. The Almanack of Naval Ravikant is a collection of entrepreneur and investor Naval Ravikant’s experiences in achieving wealth and happiness. These insights focus on making your unique path toward achieving wealth, health, and happiness.

The biggest lesson from the book

Building wealth is different from just earning a lot of money. You can only build wealth by investing in assets that keep paying you even when you sleep. So focus on building wealth in your 20s rather than chasing money and living from paycheck to paycheck.

My favorite lines from Almanack of Naval Ravikant:

“The more desire I have for something to work out a certain way, the less likely I am to see the truth.”
“Earn with your mind, not your time.”
“If you have nothing in your life, but you have at least one person that loves you unconditionally, it’ll do wonders for your self-esteem.”

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