For 5 years of my life, I lived accepting complacency and not striving for improvement. I gained 220lbs in 2 years (you read that right) eating nothing but ramen noodles, Whataburger, and pasta. Within those 2 years, I was on the verge of diabetes and heart issues. I remember while trying to sleep I had a heart rate of 145 bpm and there were plenty of nights I thought this would be the night when I wouldn’t wake up. It got to the point where I had to sleep sitting down instead of laying down or else my neck would close off my windpipe and I'd wake up gasping for air because I couldn't breathe.
When covid happened I had to face my reality. I was 22 years old, 365 lbs, single, living with my parents, and working as a school bus driver since I was a college dropout. I decided that I wanted to live a long and healthy life so I could see my little brothers and sisters grow up and I could be by their side instead of 6 feet under because I wanted to just lift heavyweights. I found my why. . .my family. After I made that decision I worked out for 6 hours every single day and went on a strict low-calorie keto diet. I remember every day after running it felt like my legs were a brittle glass that was on the verge of shattering with every step I took. But my why kept me going no matter what pain and suffering I was experiencing. Within 2.5 months I lost 125 lbs and in a few more months got down to 220lbs. I was able to run with my baby brothers and sister, play tag, no more heart palpitations, no more diabetes, moved out of my parents, started my own business, and more. . . I changed my life. In this article, I wanted to share with you some of the books I read that helped me facilitate MASSIVE change in my life. Everyone is different and wants to change in different ways but I believe that these books provide the fundamentals for change in everyone’s life. If you read or listen to the theories in these books, you’ll learn how to create massive change in your life and become the person you are MEANT to become. It’s up to you whether you achieve it or not.
All of us have one time or another underestimated the life-changing power of tiny habits compounded over a long period. We tend to underplay the bad habits and not believe in the importance of good habits. The author of this book, Darren Hardy, tells great and engaging stories and action points on how to leverage these tiny habits to improve your life and create massive change in your life over a long period. Want to become a millionaire, run a marathon, create and nourish a successful business, lose a massive amount of weight, or any other massive change in your life? The compound effect shows you the possibilities of your future and gives you an outline to achieve that future success so that you can avoid asking yourself “What If. . . ”. All you’ll need to do is the work! This book will change you from someone confused on how they can control their future into someone with a clear vision of their future and exactly how to achieve it. Buy Darren Hardy’s book, The Compound Effect.
The fundamentals that James Clear, the author of Atomic Habits, teaches are very similar to the fundamentals Darren Hardy teaches in The Compound Effect. Although I do think it’s important to reach both books if not just for the different perspectives and stories they tell. One thing that James Clear is known for teaching well is to improve 1% better each day. Here's how the math works out: if you can get 1 percent better each day for one year, you'll end up thirty‐seven times better by the time you're done. Conversely, if you get 1 percent worse each day for one year, you'll decline nearly down to zero. Reading this book and implementing the principles taught will change you from someone with self-destructive habits leading you to a harmful future into a person with optimized habits that will lead you to an aspirational future version of you. The TRUE you... Buy James Clear’s book, Atomic Habits.
If you are struggling with self-discipline and you want to dive deeper into the fears preventing you from becoming great, this is the book for you. If you do choose to read this book, you should listen to the audiobook. In it, you’ll receive a special reading and non-scripted podcast-style conversation in important parts of the book by David Goggins and Adam Skolnick (the narrator of the audiobook). Personally, this book empowered and inspired me when I made one of the biggest changes in my life (the second paragraph of this article) when I lost over 125lbs in 2.5 months. If you struggle with self-discipline and taking full responsibility for your life, this book will change you from a powerless person that life happens to into a person in FULL control of their life. If you practice the fundamentals David teaches, you’ll always be able to strive to your full potential every single day, whether you feel like it or not. Buy David Goggins’s book, Can’t Hurt Me.
“It’s not my fault, it’s because of -” if this sentence is used by you at all, you need Extreme Ownership! Jocko Willink, an ex-Navy Seal, helps people stop making excuses about their downfalls and blaming others. If you are guilty of this, there’s good news: if it’s always your fault, you will always be in control. If it is someone else’s fault, there is nothing you can do to fix it. Don’t you always want to be able to control your future? If you do, then you need to believe in extreme ownership. It will change you from a victim in your life into the hero that’s in control of his story and who he becomes. If you want to always be in control of your future but you feel like a victim in life, this is the book for you. Buy Jocko Willink’s book, Extreme Ownership.
We all need to be able to bring our best performance to the forefront when we call on it but why do some of us get stuck even with years of practice under our belt? Have you ever had to perform and you finished knowing that you could’ve and should’ve done way better than you did? Whether it’s an interview, a speech, athletic performance, or even just having a regular conversation with a friend or family member; we need to be able to master the art of being fully present at the moment. Amy Cuddy tells her story and findings of presence in her life and gives us strategies to use in real-time to change us from nervous sup par performing people into calm and confident masters of our craft especially under the spotlight. Buy Amy Cuddy’s book, Presence.
This book is kind of like a master key for life. Jordan Peterson gives thought-out rules that he believes everyone should incorporate into their life to keep chaos at bay and take control of their life. While this book is a master key, you’ll have to study this book. It’s not something that you can read once and be done with forever. So far I have listened to this book intently almost 10 times and I am still learning new concepts to implement in my life. This book helped give me clarity as to why the world is hellish and the most beautiful thing at the same time. It’s up to us to choose nihilism or optimism and progression. I hope you choose optimism and progression. Buy Jordan Peterson’s book, 12 Rules For Life.
Have you ever done something that you didn’t know what it was called until someone said, “o that? That’s called ___”? Well, that’s exactly what this book was to me! It put a why and how to me achieving massive achievement in life. Maxwell Maltz divulges the secrets to massive success, fulfillment, and goal achievement for you to capitalize on in your life. He helps you improve your self-image, teaches you how to use your positive past experiences to envision future success, gives you a process to achieve your dreams, and much more. If you want to become a success machine that knows exactly how to achieve goals of ANY magnitude, this is the book for you. Buy Maxwell Maltz’s book, Psycho-Cybernetics.
No matter how disciplined, responsible, and fulfilled your life is; it doesn’t hurt to know key business principles that will help you avoid business failure and increase your chances of success. It will only help you! I believe being successful will always include making someone else more successful in their life. If you can achieve this, you will achieve a snowball effect of success in your own life. In Donald Miller’s book, Business Made Simple, he takes you through 60 Days to Master Leadership, Sales, Marketing, Execution, Management, Personal Productivity, and More. This book also includes corresponding videos for each of those 60 days to teach you more about the concepts in the book with Donald Miller. This book is invaluable for entrepreneurs and will help instill the qualities of a successful businessman in your life-changing you from someone incompetent in business into someone who knows exactly how to create and nourish a successful business. Buy Donald Miller’s book, Business Made Simple.
Have you ever heard someone talking or watching a movie that was just painfully boring and disengaging? What about a book that you had to read in high school that you just couldn’t keep your eyes open to read if your life depended on it? Or maybe listening to a dream that your friend had but you started daydreaming about something else entirely about 5 seconds into their story? All of these things have 1 thing in common, they all had bad stories. Stories can build interest, create relationships, make you enjoy being around, and so much more. Donald Miller’s book, Building A Story Brand, helps you change from a boring person into an engaging storyteller that people won’t be able to get enough of. He teaches you the principles and concepts of a great story and how to use them for your business growth and life in general. Buy Donald Miller’s book, Building A StoryBrand.
We all want to become something greater in life. Something that we can be proud of and not regret. No more “What if I had done this 5 years ago”, now it’s “who can I become in 5 whole years”? The answer. . . whatever you believe you can become. Read these books for inspiration and to help you facilitate change in your life. Don’t wait until you are burdened with regret. Start now and change for the better.