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Top 10 Books To Read Recommended By Barack Obama, Steve Jobs, And Elon Musk

Top 10 Books To Read Recommended By Barack Obama, Steve Jobs, And Elon Musk

Want to know what goes on inside the minds of billionaires, global leaders, and game-changers?

Read what they read.

No matter how successful people like Elon Musk, Steve Jobs, or Barack Obama are today, they all acquired their knowledge and experience over time. And they admit that books were a big part of the journey.

I know what you’re thinking: what were these books?

Luckily for us, they’ve publicly shared their most recommended and impactful books that have helped them get to where they are today.

We’ve compiled the top 10 books to read, and brought it here for you to enjoy.

Enjoy these 10 books, and share the knowledge with others!

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Top 10 Books To Read

1. Atlas Shrugged By Ayn Rand

Recommended by: Steve Jobs and Mark Cuban
Topic: Politics & Business
One-sentence summary: “Solve the world’s problem through entrepreneurial solutions.”

When Steve Wozniak was interviewed about what influenced Steve Jobs in the early days of building Apple, he mentioned that Atlas Shrugged was one of the books that Jobs used as his guide to life & business.

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    2. Competing Against Time By George Stalk

    Recommended by: Tim Cook
    Topic: Business, Economy, Productivity
    One-sentence summary: “Time is now added to the other three critical factors in order to remain competitiveness in the market – money, productivity, and quality.”

    Competing Against Time is a book that Tim Cook passes out everywhere and makes it a recommendation for all new hires at Apple to read.

    apple-ceo-tim-cook-is-a-huge-fan-of-competing-against-time-by-george-stalk-jr-its-about-managing-supply-chains-to-get-a-competitive-boost-something-apple-has-to-worry-about-a-lot

      3. Business Adventures By John Brooks

      Recommended by: Warren Buffet and Bill Gates
      Topic: Business & Finance
      One-sentence summary: “A classic story about the American corporate and financial life.”

      What do two of the richest men in the world have in common? They love the writings of John Brooks. Gates writes in his essay about Business Adventures: “Brooks eschews ‘listicles’ and doesn’t ‘boil his work down into pat how-to lessons or simplistic explanations for success.’ Instead, he tells entertaining stories replete with richly drawn characters, setting them during heightened moments within the world of commerce.”

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      Buffett’s classic sayings, such as “you only find out who is swimming naked when the tide goes out,” fits right into the style of Brooks writing as well.

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        4. Influence By Robert Cialdini

        Recommended by: Charlie Munger and Guy Kawasaki
        Topic: Psychology, Persuasion, Marketing
        One-sentence summary: “Science-backed methods to persuade just about anyone you want.”

        Charlie Munger, Warren Buffett’s partner in crime at Berkshire Hathaway, attributes Cialdini’s work as having a big influence on his thinking process. His published work of the 25 Cognitive Biases of humans was very much influenced by Cialdini’s work.

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          5. Life Is What You Make It By Peter Buffett

          Recommended by: Bill Clinton
          Topic: Life, Purpose, Autobiography
          One-sentence summary: “Instead of taking the way of least resistance, choose the path to greatest satisfaction.”

          This autobiography book by Peter Buffett, Warren Buffett’s son, shares the wisdom learned from his family and his experiences. Here’s how Ted Turner, Media Icon and the Founder of CNN, describes it: “With home-spun, heart-felt wisdom Peter Buffett ponders how to make a meaningful life, while making a living.”

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            6. The Happiness Hypothesis By Jonathan Haidt

            Recommended by: Tony Hsieh
            Topic: Happiness, Culture, Philosophy,
            One-sentence summary: “Giving and serving are the way to happiness.”

            “This is probably the book that’s made the biggest impact on my life over the past five years. The author examines the beliefs about happiness of different cultures, religions and philosophers from different periods, and then compares those beliefs with research that’s been done on the science of happiness. The book is thought-provoking and the concepts can be applied to business and to life.” – Tony Hsieh (CEO of Zappos)

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              7. The Four Agreements By Don Miguel Ruiz

              Recommended by: Oprah Winfrey and Jack Dorsey
              Topic: Spirituality, Life, Happiness
              One-sentence summary: The book can be summarized in the following four precepts:

              1. Be Impeccable With Your Word
              2. Don’t Take Anything Personally
              3. Don’t Make Assumptions
              4. Always Do Your Best

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                As Jack Dorsey is in the process of running two publicly traded companies, Twitter and Square, he’s forced to mature as a leader. Throughout his journey, he acknowledges The Four Agreement as guiding him in the right path.

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                  8. Self-Reliance By Ralph Waldo Emerson

                  Recommended by: Barack Obama
                  Topic: Individualism, non-conformity and independence
                  One-sentence summary: “Hold on to your own convictions, despite what society and other people want you to believe.”

                  Self-Reliance is what put Ralph Waldo Emerson on the map as one of the most influential poets and philosophers of the 19th century. President Obama referenced this essay as one of the most significant books to him in an email to Jon Meacham from the New York Times, and even referenced the importance of self-reliance in his 2008 election victory speech.

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                    9. Autobiography Of Benjamin Franklin By Walter Isaacson

                    Recommended by: Elon Musk
                    Topic: Autobiography, Entrepreneurship, Benjamin Franklin
                    One-sentence summary: “The rise of Benjamin Franklin from the bottom to the top.”

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                    Elon Musk, the Co-Founder of Paypal, Tesla Motors, and SpaceX, has said that Ben Franklin is one of his heroes, and likely sees Franklin as the type of American he himself would like to be and become: a combination of statesman, inventor, and businessman.

                    “You can see how [Franklin] was an entrepreneur. He started from nothing. He was just a runaway kid.” -Elon Musk

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                      10. The Remains Of The Day By Kazuo Ishiguro

                      Recommended by: Jeff Bezos
                      Topic: History, World War II, Life & Regret
                      One-sentence summary: “A compelling portrait of the perfect English butler and of his fading, insular world postwar England.”

                      “Before reading it, I didn’t think a perfect novel was possible. I’m always interested in things that seem to be impossible, but are then achieved.” -Jeff Bezos

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                        Over To You

                        Which of these top 10 books to read caught your interest?
                        Is there a book that’s on your list, that didn’t make it to our top 10 books to read? Please share with us!

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                        Last Updated on September 17, 2018

                        How to Stop Multitasking and Become Way More Productive

                        How to Stop Multitasking and Become Way More Productive

                        Today we are expected to work in highly disruptive environments. We sit down at our desks, turn on our computer and immediately we are hit with hundreds of emails all vying for our attention.

                        Our phones are beeping and pinging with new alerts to messages, likes and comments and our colleagues are complaining about the latest company initiative is designed to get us to do more work and spend less time at home.

                        All these distractions result in us multitasking where our attention is switching between one crisis and the next.

                        Multitasking is a problem. But how to stop multitasking?

                        How bad really is multitasking?

                        It dilutes your focus and attention so even the easiest of tasks become much harder and take longer to complete.

                        Studies have shown that while you think you are multitasking, you are in fact task switching, which means your attention is switching between two or more pieces of work and that depletes the energy resources you have to do your work.

                        This is why, even though you may have done little to no physical activity, you arrive home at the end of the day feeling exhausted and not in the mood to do anything.

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                        We know it is not a good way to get quality work done, but the demands for out attention persist and rather than reduce, are likely to increase as the years go by.

                        So what to do about it?

                        Ways to stop multitasking and increase productivity

                        Now, forget about how to multitask!

                        Here are a few strategies on how to stop multitasking so you can get better quality and more work done in the time you have each working day:

                        1. Get enough rest

                        When you are tired, your brain has less strength to resist even the tiniest attention seeker. This is why when you find your mind wandering, it is a sign your brain is tired and time to take a break.

                        This does not just mean taking breaks throughout the day, it also means making sure you get enough sleep every day.

                        When you are well rested and take short regular breaks throughout the day your brain is fully refuelled and ready to focus in on the work that is important.

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                        2. Plan your day

                        When you don’t have a plan for the day, the day will create a plan for you. When you allow outside influences to take control of your day, it is very hard not to be dragged off in all directions.

                        When you have a plan for the day, when you arrive at work your brain knows exactly what it is you want to accomplish and will subconsciously have prepared itself for a sustained period of focused work.

                        Your resistance to distractions and other work will be high and you will focus much better on the work that needs doing.

                        3. Remove everything from your desk and screen except for the work you are doing

                        I learned this one a long time ago. In my previous work, I worked in a law office and I had case files to deal with. If I had more than one case file on my desk at any one time, I would find my eyes wandering over the other case files on my desk when I had something difficult to do.

                        I was looking for something easier. This meant often I was working on three or four cases at one time and that always led to mistakes and slower completion.

                        Now when I am working on something, I am in full-screen mode where all I can see is the work I am working on right now.

                        4. When at your desk, do work

                        We are creatures of habit. If we do our online shopping and news reading at our desks as well as our work, we will always have the temptation to be doing stuff that we should not be doing at that moment.

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                        Do your online shopping from another place—your home or from your phone when you are having a break—and only do your work when at your desk. This conditions your brain to focus in on your work and not other distractions.

                        5. Learn to say no

                        Whenever you hear the phrase “learn to say no,” it does not mean going about being rude to everyone. What it does mean is delay saying yes.

                        Most problems occur when we say “yes” immediately. We then have to spend an inordinate amount of energy thinking of ways to get ourselves out of the commitment we made.

                        By saying “let me think about it” or “can I let you know later” gives you time to evaluate the offer and allows you to get back to what you were doing quicker.

                        6. Turn off notifications on your computer

                        For most of us, we still use computers to do our work. When you have email alert pop-ups and other notifications turned on, they will distract you no matter how strong you feel.

                        Turn them off and schedule email reviewing for times between doing your focused work. Doing this will give you a lot of time back because you will be able to remain focused on the work in front of you.

                        7. Find a quiet place to do your most important work

                        Most workplaces have meeting rooms that are vacant. If you do have important work to get done, ask if you can use one of those rooms and do your work there.

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                        You can close the door, put on your headphones and just focus on what is important. This is a great way to remove all the other, non-important, tasks demanding your attention and just focus on one piece of work.

                        The bottom line

                        Focusing on one piece of work at a time can be hard but the benefits to the amount of work you get done are worth it. You will make fewer mistakes, you will get more done and will feel a lot less tired at the end of the day.

                        Make a list of the four or five things you want to get done the next day before you finish your work for the day and when you start the day, begin at the top of the list with the first item.

                        Don’t start anything else until you have finished the first one and then move on to the second one. This one trick will help you to become way more productive.

                        Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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