This is a review of three books which, I believe, communicate powerful, transformational messages. These are potent books for wealth creation. If you read them and you apply the knowledge and wisdom they contain you will create massive, positive change in your life.
There are some books in the world which grant us passage to a higher realm of existence. After reading them we can look back and see clearly that our lives changed course for the better by reading them.
These are three books which did that to me. My hope is that they will do the same for you.
This book is by Robin Sharma, a inspirational speaker, bestselling writer and expert in elite performance. He has worked with some of the most successful individuals and companies in the world. He teaches people how to bring the best out of themselves in a sustainable and ethical manner. These themes are present throughout all of his books.
“The 5 AM Club” came out in 2018. I encountered it while I was living in the Czech Republic. I was wandering through a bookstore when I saw it on a table and was immediately struck by the simple yet elegant design along with the tagline: “Own Your Morning, Elevate Your Life” I bought it immediately.
The book follows the journey of a young business owner who attends a self-improvement conference as a final act of desperation before she attempts to take her own life. At the conference she, along with an artist who was also in attendance, meet an eccentric hobo whith a secret identity. One thing leads to another and the two attendees wind up on an exotic journey along with the hobo.
The journey is the backdrop for a wealth of lessons imparted by the “hobo” upon his two mentees. The book is filled with practical wisdom about how it is our personal responsibility to rise to the challenge of becoming the best we can be. Sharma writes with simple eloquence about what happens when we fail to pursue our dreams (it isn’t good); how distraction is leading people to stagnate in conformity, wasting their talents, and what we can do about it. The book is stuffed to the brim with practical insights employed by elite performers to elevate and sustain their output.
And the most transformational bit of practical wisdom is this: waking up at five am sets us up to experience top-level performance in anything we do.
Sharma goes into detail about why waking up early sets us up for success. He touches on the science which backs up the claim and refers to the brilliant creators in the history of our species who maintained an early rising habit. Successful people wake up early.
By the time I encountered the book I had tried and failed countless times to establish an early rising habit. I just could never do it consistently. I would do it one morning and stop after that. Everything I tried failed; I set multiple alarm clocks, went to bed early, ensured my room was pitch black so I could sleep well to wake up rested early in the morning. Nothing worked. No technology I tried succeeded in waking me up and nothing motivated me to get up early. I figured I just wasn’t the type of person who could wake up early.
Until I read “The 5 AM Club”. Then everything changed.
“The 5 AM Club” convinced me that if I wanted to be successful I had to wake up early. Successful in every sense of the word, not just materially. Waking up early is a simple yet powerful habit which builds discipline; it allows us to release enormous stores of power we never knew we had in us.
I’ve been practicing the habits I learned from “The 5 AM Club” for more than a year now. I’ve read the book five times. I can tell you with full confidence that applying its knowledge has elevated my game tremendously.
I’ll tell you something I’ve learned after applying the book’s wisdom for more than a year. This isn’t discussed in the book, but I’ve noticed it now that I’ve made getting up at five am a habit.
You can only wake up at 5 am consistently if you are working on your dreams.
Think about it. Waking up at five am is tough. It demands that you take charge of your time. You can’t go to sleep late, otherwise you won’t be able to wake up early. And once the alarm sounds, if you don’t have a burning desire driving you, then you will not get up. You need to have your priorities straight if you’re going to succeed at waking up at 5 am.
You need to be working on what you truly desire. Look at the article “Desire – It’s The Calling Of The Heart” for more on this.
In other words, waking up at 5 am is a test. It tests your passion for life. And here’s the kicker. At the same time, waking up at 5 am helps you figure out what your passion in life is. If you are struggling to find something which calls to you, an activity which truly moves the deepest part of your soul, then waking up at 5 am will help you find it.
Because you will only succeed at waking up at 5 am consistently if your working on something that truly motivates you.
James Clear published “Atomic Habits” in 2018. It has become a worldwide sensation. For good reason, the book is jam-packed with actionable wisdom which, if applied, is guaranteed to produce lasting, sustainable change.
Clear’s writing matches his name (hah!), he has honed his message by publishing his writing on his website for almost a decade. This has made him an expert on habits. He has streamlined the process by which we can pick up new, helpful habits and kick old, hurtful ones. His expertise on the subject matter is evidenced by the gargantuan readership he has amassed both online and offline.
The core message of the book is captured by the tagline “Tiny Changes, Remarkable Results”. Clear argues that by implementing tiny, almost imperceptible changes in our daily behaviors we can, over time, produce massive results. He uses examples like rock-breaking and bamboo-growing to support the fact that all success is the product of the work which went before it.
There is no such thing as an “overnight success”; whomever succeeds massively has put in the work to do so beforehand. We only believe it’s “overnight success” because we didn’t see the person as they were working up to it. Do you think world-famous athletes, musicians or scientists are just born with the talent and suddenly become leaders in their field when they wake up one day? That’s not how it works.
Success is a habit. We can all cultivate it.
Clear makes the case for how habits pay off in compound interest. That’s why tiny habits, when maintained for long enough (years), end producing “Remarkable Results”. It’s our responsibility to “show up” to perform the habit regularly. Showing up is the hardest part. But, if we just do that, success takes care of itself.
“Atomic Habits” establishes that in order to adopt a new habit you need to follow the following laws:
- Make it obvious
- Make it easy
- Make it attractive
- Make it rewarding
By following these laws you will increase the chances of establishing a habit and sticking with it over the long run. Habits only pay over the long run, so it’s essential to make them stick! Clear writes about the “Valley of Disappointment”, the period where the benefits of habits are still not yet noticeable in our lives. Making it through the “Valley” is essential to see the fruits of our work.
He also writes about how to break bad habits. It’s the opposite of what you do for installing good habits:
- Make it invisible
- Make it hard
- Make it unattractive
- Make it unrewarding
It has only been a couple of months since I read the book, but I have already noticed the benefits of applying its wisdom in my life. For example, I:
- Established A Good Habit – I was trying to establish a regular exercise routine in the morning, but I kept failing. After reading “Atomic Habits” I made the following change: I made it easy. Instead of telling myself “I’m going to work out hard for 20 minutes”, I told myself “I’ll work out at a comfortable pace for 10 minutes, no pressure.” That did the trick. I am now more likely to follow through with my workout habit. It’s more important to show up and DO the habit than to push ourselves to do a lot. In other words, negotiate with yourself. If you can’t convince yourself to go on a 10 km run then go on a 5 km run; if you can’t do that then go on a walk. It’s not “all or nothing”, we can negotiate with ourselves. And showing up to do the habit is much more important than doing a lot of it.
- Broke A Bad Habit – I’ve been trying and failing to cut my sugar consumption over the past few years. Sugar messes us up something fierce. It fattens us up and it dulls our reward mechanism; when we eat sugar we derive less satisfaction from doing tougher (but healthier) activities, so we do them less. “Atomic Habits” taught me that I could do one change and it would help cut my sugar habit: I made it invisible. If there are chocolate chip cookies around, I’ll eat them all. The same goes for brownies, chocolate bars and cakes. I’m a chocolate/sugar addict. So now, instead of buying these chocolate treats, storing them in my house and telling myself I’ll resist eating them (which always fails), I just don’t buy them. I’ve made the sugary treats invisible, so I don’t eat them as much as I used to (I still keep a small bag of chocolate snacks which I use as a reward for doing the dishes each day).
We become our habits. “Atomic Habits” can teach you how to make sure you become the person you want to be by facilitating the “good” habits and minimizing the “bad” ones. The book has made a tremendous difference in my life and it can do the same for you.
This book came out in the 1930s and is still being talked about today. That tells you something regarding the timelessness of its wisdom. It’s a tiny book which packs a tremendous punch.
Napoleon Hill wrote the book by studying successful men and women over the course of twenty years. He distilled his observations into 13 principles which he outlines in the book, a “Philosophy of Achievement”. Hill writes that these principles can be used to effectively increase income, and they also can be used in any other field of achievement. They are universal.
The principles are as follows:
- Desire – All achievement starts with desire. You need to make sure you are working towards a goal which lights up your insides, otherwise you will give up whenever the going gets tough.
- Faith – In other words, belief. You must believe you can achieve what you want to achieve. Without belief we will never put in the effort to get what we want. Belief allows us to accomplish new things. At the beginning all we have is belief.
- Autosuggestion – Belief can be cultivated. It is done so through autosuggestion. The more you repeat an image/emotion to yourself, the more ingrained it becomes. If you repeat an image/emotion of belief to yourself over and over again, you cultivate belief and thus set the process of achievement in motion.
- Specialized Knowledge – Knowing how to solve problems is key to being successful. If you want to be an all-star athlete, you need to know how to score points. If you want to be a world-renown engineer, you need to be able to design effective solutions to challenges. Specialized knowledge allows us to do these things.
- Imagination – Every product had its start in someone’s mind. The device you’re using to read this, the clothes your wearing, the article your reading; they all began as an idea. The more trained and developed your imagination, the more ideas you have. And the more ideas you have, the more likely one of them will be useful.
- Organized Planning – Have a plan. Even if its just tentative. A plan allows you to focus on what needs to be done in order to succeed. It increases your focus, and focus is essential for success. That’s why I make a plan of my days before they arrive. When they do, I know exactly what I need to do to succeed.
- Decision – Effective people make decisions quickly and change their minds slowly. This doesn’t mean you need to be rash in decision-making. It means you prioritize the important decisions, do all the research you need to do to make the right one and then stick with your plan. Indecision leads to lost opportunity.
- Persistence – Sticking with something even when everything looks dark and hopeless is a key to success. Oftentimes just being persistent will bear success. Keep going!
- Power of the Master Mind – When two or more people come together to share ideas and goals, a new entity is created; a new mind. This Master Mind is a combination of all of the people who have come together; it is greater than the sum of its parts. Everyone in the group has access to the power of the Master Mind.
- The Mystery Of Sex Transmutation – Sex is the most primal driving force for humans. Unfortunately, many people (mostly men) waste this primal energy on pornography or promiscuity. They don’t realize that by harnessing the energy of sex, the greatest accomplishments are possible. Harness it!
- The Subconscious Mind – 90% of our decisions are made by our emotional subconscious. You are led to success or to failure by your subconscious mind. It operates beneath the level of awareness. But just because you aren’t aware of it, doesn’t mean it isn’t there. You can train your subconscious mind to guide you to success by autosuggestion.
- The Brain – Between our ears lies the most complex entity in the known universe. Our brain is our supreme servant, it is our most powerful tool in the game of life. Treat it well and it will take you where you want to go.
- The Sixth Sense – This is the pinnacle of the “Philosophy of Achievement”. It can only be accessed once all 12 other principles are mastered. It is the source of hunches and intuition.
I read “Think And Grow Rich” a couple of years ago. It completely transformed how I viewed success and how I could achieve it. Today, the principles of achievement are a part of me. They are my framework for success. Follow the instructions in “Think And Grow Rich” and you will succeed at what you propose yourself.
Read Your Way To Wealth!
I hope this book review has served you. These three books contain powerful wisdom which can elevate your game so you can achieve whatever it is you want. I rely on the knowledge I’ve gained from these books every day. They have been essential to my success. They will be the same to you, if you read and apply them.
I invite you to leave a comment below!
To your wealth and success.