By Ward Richmond
2018 has arrived. What in the hell is up with that, Father Time?
This year, I turned 39 years old. Damn- that happened fast!
I recently joined Instagram with the handle: @TheWardRichmond and a younger friend of mine said “That’s boring. You should make your Insta name @TallYogaDude”! Then she thought twice and said, “No, you should make it @MiddleAgedYogaDude!”
WTF?! “Middle aged”? Really?!
A colleague of mine in his late 20’s and I were recently talking about a deal we are working on together and I asked him about the age of the lady he was dealing with on a particular transaction – whom I had never met – and he said, “She is a little older than you are, like 53 or something.”
You’ve got to be kidding me, bro!
Nevertheless, next June- I am scheduled to turn the big 4-0! Shit is getting real!
As I woke up back on January 1, 2017, I took serious notice that while I might look pretty good on paper, and through an Instagram filter, I was not exactly operating at the physical, mental nor spiritual level that my 18 year old self would have liked me to be operating at as a 40 year old man. This bone chilling realization quickly lead me to recognize that I only had about 18 months to get it together and make it happen!
One of the ways I responded to this rude awakening was by reading some kick ass books to influence and inspire me. I think I read around 25 but lost count. This turned out to be a fantastic idea and I highly recommend that you give this a try whether you’re about to turn 18 or 80!
I started with a Top 15 list but that was just too darn long so I decided to narrow the list to the Top 10. While reading these gems, I identified a handful of key takeaways from each book that made sense to me and I began to diligently apply these principals in my daily life.
If you are getting ready for 2018 and looking to take it to the next level, I am confident that these 10 books will lead to significant improvement in your physical, mental and spiritual health. Thank me later!
When asked how to get smarter, Warren Buffett once said, “Read 500 pages every week. That’s how knowledge builds up, like compound interest.”
The title speaks for itself. I keep a stack of 10 in my office to give to my friends! This was my gateway into the world of Tim Ferriss which is the go-to place to learn life strategies from the best of the best. This is a great read and broken into several short chapters which I really enjoy. This is how I started 2017 and I might just do the same thing to kick off next year! I wish I discovered Tim Ferriss 10 years ago when he wrote the 4 Hour Work Week but it was not in the cards. It is never too late to discover Tim and read his mind-altering books.
This book was my intro into the mind of Tony Robbins.Tony is the king of telling you all of things that you already inherently know while identifying simple, actionable methods which enable you to make minor life tweaks that lead to massive physical, mental and spiritual growth. I was about four chapters in by the time I decided to sign up for Tony’s Business Mastery Seminar and peak performance coaching. I went on to attend three total Tony Robbins events this year and actually got to meet him this October!
Sir Richard Branson is a true piece of work! I loved reading this autobiography which walks you all the way through his journey from being a high school troublemaker to adult troublemaker to billionaire business magnate, crazed adrenaline junky and obsessive philanthropist. His writing style is wonderfully colloquial which makes for a quick and entertaining read about a truly world class and inspiring human being.
This is the first book written by Tim Ferriss. The 4 Hour Work Week digs in to Tim’s studies on lifestyle design and provides actionable items which provide you with the skillset to make a 4 hour work week a reality! I actually enjoy working more than 4 hours a week (I probably need to read another book to help me change this! =)) Nevertheless, I still found this book highly entertaining and jam packed with practical advice. He methodically dismantles archaic life/ work philosophies which help you to think outside the box and immediately initiate life changing, career changing strategies to leave the 40 work week, corporate grind bullshit in the dust. There is no doubt that this book has altered my work style in a massive way which has contributed to a massive increase in efficiency and productivity within my business and life.
The Liar’s Ball is an action-packed, scandal filled story about the famous GM Building in New York City. This insane, behind the scene tale of the scandalous, greedy, power hungry, risk-taking NYC cowboys (including our own President Trump) who risked everything to own this Midtown Manhattan office building is stranger than fiction. I loved hearing about the real estate brokers, lawyers and bankers that helped to make it all happen behind the scenes! This book is better to read when you wake up in the morning versus when you go to sleep at night because it gets your heart pounding with adrenaline!
We should just call this the Tim Ferriss list. The 4 Hour Body is an excellent read and like all Ferriss material, it provides multiple actionable strategies that you can put to work immediately in your daily life! Ferriss delivers with tips on all things body related ranging from nutrition to exercise and not to mention, the female orgasm! I have lost 20 lbs and normalized my blood pressure using the Slow Carb Diet and my wife and I have a new baby on the way thanks to tips from this book! =)
Unshakable is a fantastic read about investment strategy. Tony has access to some of the greatest investors in the world and he puts those relationships to work. It is a fairly quick read, which was a nice surprise, considering it is a book on finance and investing. Tony breaks it down in the way that only Tony Robbins can do and outlines some fairly simple and actionable core investment strategies and psychology.
This is a great, quick read based upon the Zin philosophy of “Chop Wood, Carry Water” – which basically means – be present and mindful, work hard and appreciate the process. Whenever I may feel overwhelmed, I think back to this simple advice and it helps me to chill out. This story follows a boy through his journey to becoming a samurai warrior and is packed with impactful stories full of simple life philosophies that sooth the soul. I really enjoyed Joshua Medcalf’s writing style as well as the simple core life strategies that he laid out with his storytelling. This reminds me of what it would be like if Tony Robbins decided to write fiction. Joshua Medcalf’s day job is to help top tier athletes and coaches to improve their mental conditioning, leadership and life skills.
This book was recommended by multiple peak performers interviewed in Tools of Titans. It is a story about overcoming all odds and literally taking over the world. As a logistics specialist, I found this book to be super interesting considering Genghis Khan basically invented world trade and global transportation modeling. I have recently been intrigued by history and this was my first step into the world of historic nonfiction and I plan to keep this up in 2018.
This book is a great read for those of you looking to grow your business. If you are still reading this blog post, I have no doubt that you fall into this category! It is not nearly as entertaining as it is informative. Port digs into developing authentic and strategic business development methods. I have put several actionable items picked up from this book to work in 2017 and it is paying off in droves.