My 2019 goal was to read a book a month. It didn’t matter what it was all; I just wanted to read a little more this year. I started strong, reading my first five books in less than three months but finished the year slow, a classic new year’s resolutions move. Here is my list of books I made it through this year, my takeaways, and reading suggestions from my list.
I hope I do not offend any of you with a few of these titles. Some books I listened to and some of them I read. Listening is great for commuting to work, but at 3:45 am, the narrator has to be pretty upbeat, and that is hard to find with non-fiction books.
- Clock Work: Design Your Business to Run Itself – Mike Michalowiz
- The Two-Income Trap: Why Middle-Class Parents Are Going Broke – Elizabeth Warren
- Toilet Paper Entrepreneur – Mike Michalowiz
- Founder, Farmer, Thinker, Theif: The Four Phases of an Entrepreneurs Journey – Chris Cooper
- 42 Faith: The Rest of the Jackie Robinson Story – Ed Henry
- Crush It & Crushing It!: How Great Entrepreneurs Build Their Business and Influence-and How You Can, Too – Gary Vaynerchuk
- Addicted to Outrage: How Thinking Like a Recovering Addict Can Heal the Country – Glenn Beck
- Total Money Make Over – Dave Ramsey (Third time with this one, still didn’t stick lol)
- Can’t Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds – David Goggins
- The Right Side of History: How Reason and Moral Purpose Made the West Great – Ben Shapiro
I’ve only ever read non-fiction books, and before I started with BWCF, I never read outside of assigned reading in school. My business partner gave me two books in 2012 (Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill & How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie), and I have been reading/listening to books ever since.
From my list of books this year, the three biggest takeaways were to live a life of virtuosity and fulfillment, the world and business lives on the internet and how you need to influence people there, and no amount of money will make you happy but time will.
My favorite book from 2019 and one that I recommend to everyone is David Goggins’s book, Can’t Hurt Me. I got it for Christmas last year and finished it in a week. (that’s fast for me lol.) Everyone loves an underdog story, and Goggins’ is that. He is proof that if you want something, you can get it, but you have to be willing to put the work in. I highly suggest this book to anyone who is in need of a little motivation to take a step forward in their life. Fulfillment can be found in many things and doesn’t have to be like Goggins through constant physical beatdowns but through hard work in your job or personal life. Put the work in and reap the benefits.
My second lesson came from two books with the same premise by the same person. I bought Crush It by Gary Vaynerchuck after hearing him on a podcast. It’s a short read, and the book is a little outdated, being that he wrote it about social media ten years ago. So after finishing it, I picked up Crushing It! An updated version of Crush It that he wrote in 2018. Gary goes through each major social media platform and explains what each is good for when it comes to influencing people and growing your business brand. Since reading it, I have written and posted over fifty blog posts, and I started a YouTube page where we got over 20,000 views and over a thousand hours of watch time in 2019. These platforms allow me to offer people my experiences, instruction, and advice from what I have learned through a life of health and fitness. Creating channels where I can help others outside of the gym has been one of the best things I have done this year. It is a great outlet and something I enjoy doing. If you are someone who is trying to build a brand, both of these books are worth the time.
Knowing what you want to do in life and then being able to do it for a living is one of the greatest blessings I have, and I am truly thankful. As the gym has grown over the last eight years, I have learned a lot about business, more than I ever learned in college. (I have a business degree.) Reading a few books from successful business owners each year is the best way to stay sharp and focused. Two authors and entrepreneurs that I enjoy reading are Mike Michalowicz & Chris Cooper. Both are successful business owners and write very relatable and easy to follow books. I think I have read about eight books between the two of them, and all have helped me grow BWCF to what it is today. Although I finished both of their newest books this year, my favorite books by them are Help First by Chris Cooper and The Pumpkin Plan by Mike Michalowicz. If you are growing a business in the service industry, both of these are must-reads.
For 2020 I want to keep my monthly book goal, and my first book of the year will be The Power of Nice by Linda Kaplan Thaler and Robert Koval, but I want to add another resolution to 2020, and that is the goal to be fluent in Spanish by the end of the year. So when you see me and are someone who speaks Spanish, help me get better by throwing a sentence or two at me so I can practice and learn!