“I spend a lot of time reading.”
BILL GATES, The Richest Man In The World
“The Spice Girl Victoria Beckham has just published the story of her life. I confess that it is not in my reading list.”
As anyone who knows me will roll their eyes, laugh and attest to, I read a lot.
By “a lot” I mean there are normally more times during the day that I’m reading than not reading.
Like if those two amounts of time, Reading Time Vs. No Reading Time, were to morph into corresponding Time Monsters and battle each other? The fight would just never happen because No Reading Time would look up at Reading Time and just say “F that” and RUN. Reading Time would consider chasing him but then realize it needs to hurry up and morph back so I can get back to reading.
One time I got caught reading while having sex with my wife. As in … she looked up and saw me reading a book about quantum mechanics.
“What the heck are you doing??” she panted.
“I’m moving this book out of the way so we can do that one thing. Relax baby,” I miraculously came up with in the spur of the moment.
I read while I drive, when I work out, while I wait for anything anywhere, during all meals, while reading (meaning I read two books at once – double fisted), for every second I’m on a plane, and even right now I’m tempted to end this article early so I can go read.
I read my mom’s DNA while I was still in the womb because I got sick of waiting to be born and not learning anything. “Nine months. Ugh. Someone let me outta this weird place! Or toss a book in or something! Boooooriiiiing.” *kick kick kick*
I recently realized that I order approximately one book a day from Amazon. That’s $600 a month. $7,200 a year. That’s almost like me putting myself through private school every year except I don’t get to graduate ever and it’s actually useful information.
When people ask me what I do for fun, I say, “I read.” Period. They look at me like I’m a loser, and I just stand there reading their mind because I’m bored with their conversation.
My therapist says there’s technically no name for this disorder in the DSM, but he’ll be voting it in at the next American Psychological Association meeting based on our sessions. So I can check that off my bucket list: “manifest one new mental disorder to share with the world.”
“I was reading the dictionary. I thought it was a poem about everything.”
– Steven Wright, comedian
My wife Ashley hates reading.
She definitely wouldn’t like me telling you that, but fortunately for me there’s a better chance there will be ice hockey in hell than her ever reading this article.
It’s not that she’s not interested in what I write; it’s just that she would have to read it in order to find out what it is.
“Isn’t there some other way?” she asks.
But that’s ok. I read enough for the both of us. And believe me, I annoy all the information into her through daily communication which, miraculously, I somehow still have time for given the amount of reading I do.
And come to think of it, she actually has started reading a lot more lately. Her mirror neurons must be kicking in. That means she’s probably going to read this article and get mad.
Hhmmm … to leave the part about my wife in this article or not …
So why do I read so much? And why should you?
Because the more you know, the more you GROW.
And the more you grow, … I’m going to stop rhyming now like I’m Zig Ziglar or something. The more you grow the richer you get. Rich in mind, body, soul and bank account.
“We’re in a knowledge economy. So it just makes sense that the more you read the better off you’ll be.”
– Ryan Holiday, best selling author
They say money doesn’t grow on trees? Well you should see my solid oak bookshelf with a thousand books on it. Those books are MONEY son.
Someone came to my door the other day selling magazines for charity. They took one look at my house and said, “Dang. Man, what’s the #1 piece of advice you could give me so I could have a house like this some day?” I pulled him inside and showed him one of my bookshelves
“Read that many books.”
You wanna be successful? READ. Read like your life depended on it. It does.
Here’s some Snapple Fun Facts for you:
- 1/3 of all high school graduates never read another book their entire lives.
- 42% of college graduates never read another book their entire lives.
- 32% of American citizens have never been in a bookstore.
- 15% of Americans are freakin ILLITERATE. And that percent is growing exponentially thanks to our embarrassingly most horrible public school system in the known universe. Raise that by 5% if you live in the Deep South like me.
Is it any wonder I have to travel to specific normally faraway cities to have an intelligent conversation with people who don’t bore the crap out of me?
Why does the income disparity in America surprise anyone? Don’t be shocked. Read. The 1% read. The 99% don’t. It’s not rocket science.
But it’s not just reading in general; it’s what you read. The following is a list of the most important books I’ve ever read that I wish someone would have given me so I didn’t have to read the other 900 books just to find these. Read them in 2014, and you probably won’t be broke in 2015:
The Bible by God (I’ve read it probably 100 times)
Secrets of the Millionaire Mind by T Harv Eker (read it four times at least)
All of the Rich Dad Poor Dad series books
All of Tim Ferriss’ books
The following three history books will make you smarter than 99.9% of the human race:
A History of the American People by Paul Johnson
Modern Times by Paul Johnson
A History of the Jews by Paul Johnson
All of Paul Johnson’s books
Hypnotic Writing by Joe Vitale
The Wizard of Ads by Roy Williams
Pitch Anything by Oren Klaff (best book on sales EVER)
Covert Persuasion by Kevin Hogan
Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert Cialdini
Marketing Outrageously by Jon Spoelstra
The 48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene
Mastery by Robert Greene (maybe the most important book anyone could ever read)
The Power of Full Engagement by Tony Schwartz
The Power of Positive Thinking by Normal Vincent Peale
The Keys to Success by Napoleon Hill
As A Man Thinketh by James Allen
Winning Through Intimidation by Robert Ringer
The Inner Game Of Tennis by Tim Galloway
Awaken the Giant Within by Anthony Robbins
The War of Art by Steven Pressfield
Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand
The Way of the Superior Man by David Deida
The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing by Al Ries
No More Christian Nice Guy by Paul Coughlin
Sacred Marriage by Gary Thomas
The Case for Christ by Lee Strobel
Emergency by Neil Strauss
The Paleo Diet by Loren Cordain
Jesus: An Interview Across Time by Andrew Hodges (one of the best books I’ve ever read)
A$$hole: How I Got Rich & Happy … by Martin Kihn (funniest book I’ve ever read. Plus it’ll teach you something about being an alpha male)
Dave Berry’s Money Secrets by Dave Berry (second funniest book I’ve ever read … reading funny stuff makes you funnier. The funnier you are the more people will like and trust you … and buy from you)
Aftershock by David Weidemer
Boomerang by Michael Lewis (read this asap and plan accordingly)
The Crash Course by Chris Martenson
Titan: The Life of John D Rockefeller by Ron Chernow
The Denial of Death by Ernest Becker (best book on psychology ever)
No Man Is An Island by Thomas Merton
All of Daniel Goleman’s books
All of Richard Maybury’s books (and his newsletter is incredible)
How To Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
Radical Honesty by Brad Blanton
The Road Less Traveled by Scott Peck
The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy
Boundaries by Cloud & Townsend
The Call by Os Guiness
Finding God by Larry Crabb (read it three times – amazeballs)
all of CS Lewis’ books especially Mere Christianity
The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
Pain Free by Pete Egoscue
Wheat Belly by William Davis
Games People Play by Eric Berne
A Whole New Mind by Daniel Pink
Iron John by Robert Bly
Intellectuals by Paul Johnson
Epicenter by Joel Rosenberg
Guide to Investing in Gold and Silver by Michael Maloney
Crashproof Prosperity by Kip Heriage
The Creature From Jekyll Island by Edward Griffin
What’s the top three books you’ve ever read? Leave them in a comment below and I’ll ream them all this week.
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