I can recall back to the time when I realized that I wanted to be a better person in every facet of my life. I had been out of college for a couple years, I graduated in 2010 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Investment Finance with nearly straight C’s. I slacked off terribly in college spending too much time hanging out with friends, playing online poker, and trying to figure out the easiest routes to get my assignments done without actually putting any work into it. Fast forward to 2012, I was working with one of my friends Jason in the entertaining world of politics. We traveled constantly working on grassroots campaigns across the United States. We would be in one city for a few days, travel to the next, and occasionally get the luxury of living in one place for a couple months at a time. During this period, I got the entrepreneurial itch as did my friend Jason and we decided to start our first business together. It was called Prestige Strategies, and we essentially created websites, marketing strategies, and managed several small political campaigns. Since then I have been involved in three other startups and as of now, I haven’t found the success that I had hoped to find. This led me to believe that I (of ALL people) may be at the root of the problem. Being a self diagnosed “slacker” I have noticed on several occasions that I am really good at having other people do my work for me and at the first sign of struggle, I throw in the towel and start looking into other ideas. I believe this stems from the idea that it’s best to cut your losses early and mentally move on to the next investment. This got me into looking how I could be a better person. There is one thing that stands out from the crowd the most...
I started reading more. I had never been a big reader, but if you were to tell me if I read something that it was possible for me to have more success, money, skills, etc. I would buy that book immediately. I automatically fell into non fiction, finance, economics, politics, etc. I remember I grabbed the book “Swim with the Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive: Outsell, Outmanage, Outmotivate, and Outnegotiate Your Competition” by Harvey Mackay at my local Barnes & Noble for $5.99 and read it in two days. I thought this was the only way I become more successful, just read - read - read. I can’t recall what I took away from that book besides what the title suggests I should of learned, but I just distinctly remember thinking that I was becoming a “better” person the moment I bought it. Now we can debate whether this is true or not, but if I feel like I’m becoming a better person, that has to be at least half the battle. Needless to say, I have purchased and downloaded so many books since then that I have thoroughly enjoyed and have added utility to my life.
I know many people don’t account for the vast amount of articles they read online or in magazines, but I can’t ignore them. I understand they haven’t been vetted and reviewed like most books have, I also understand that the information isn’t always accurate, but I feel that is part of your duty to research what you read. I find myself using the app Pocket more and more. It has simplified my life to the extent that I come across articles throughout my day and due to my current job schedule I cannot read them at that moment. It allows me to save it in a simplified reader version that I can have on my phone and read later even without an internet connection. There is so much good information out there on blogs, and websites that I can’t ignore and simply wait for it to make it’s way into a book someday, so articles count in my opinion as reading.
I hope as we get Cut & Caliber off the ground I’ll be able to share the many books both Steven and I are reading, as well as link great articles as well. You will be able to find all of this information and more in our newsletter. Lastly, I wanted to add a couple of articles that have both inspired me to read and how to go about reading a “book a week”.
Reading: “The People Factor” - Van Moody
Skill Improvement: Chesscademy Recently stumbled across this website in the attempt to step up my chess game. It offers free lessons, tutorials, and quizzes to help the chess amatuer step up his/her game. I try and dedicate about 15 - 20 minutes a day working on my game in hopes to become a better player and win all my “Chess with Friends” games.