Books that Have Changed My Life, Part II

This post is a continuation of Books that Have Changed My Life, Part I.

As time passes, I spend less time reading newspapers, magazines, and social media posts, and more time reading books. The information is denser, and the intellectual return-on-investment is higher. Plus, the news cycle is all garbage anyway; I usually find out about important events by asking others what’s happening in the world, then researching the things that sound interesting. But there are so many problems with the news cycle that I usually don’t even think it’s worth participating. More on this another time; the point is that books have become my strong preference, over all other types of media. Here in Part II are mostly books that have shaped my worldview in 2013; most have something to do with the philosophies and practices of peace, conflict, resilience, randomness, achievement, generosity, evolution, and money.

Copied from Part I: Charlie Jones said “The only difference between where you are today, and where you’ll be a year from today, are the books you read and the people you meet.” Since I started reading voluntarily at the age of 14, books have had a huge influence on my life. Most of the books below are ones I’ve read multiple times, dog-eared dozens of pages in, and given as gifts. They and their authors have shaped who I’ve become.


 Philosophy, Psychology and Worldview

Principles, by Ray Dalio

The Art of Peace, by Morihei Ueshiba

Mastery, by George Leonard

Choose Yourself, by James Altucher

Linchpin, by Seth Godin

Tribes, by Seth Godin

Ikigai, by Sebastian Marshall

On Heroes, Hero-Worship, and the Heroic in History, by Thomas Carlyle

Antifragile, by Nassim Nicholas Taleb

The Black Swan, by Nassim Nicholas Taleb

The Bed of Procrustes, by Nassim Nicholas Taleb

The Assault on Reason, by Al Gore


 Money, Economy, and Capital

The Soul of Money, by Lynne Twist

The Generosity Network, by Jennifer McCrea and Jeffrey Walker

Predictable Revenue, by Aaron Ross and MaryLou Tyler

How Much is Enough? Money and the Good Life, by Robert and Edward Skidelsky

What Money Can’t Buy: the Moral Limits of Markets, by Michael Sandel

I Will Teach You to Be Rich, by Ramit Sethi


Now read this

“I’ll Be Where I Need to Be”

A few months ago, a conversation between friends went like this: First, Cosmo asked where Sam would be [in life] a year from now. Sam replied with a few solid guesses of where she’d be, what she’d be working on, and why. Then she asked... Continue →