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WOMAN OF SUBSTANCES
- Jenny Valentish
I learned more in this book than I have in years of reading about psychology. Woman of Substances shares the contributing factors which can make some people more susceptible to addiction, including temperament, personality type, what events we are exposed to between the ages of one to seven, socialisation, exposure to childhood trauma and environment. Valentish shares her own journey through addiction and what factors contributed to her behaviour with a chilling honesty that is part memoir, part research piece, and part call to action on what opportunities there are for providers, families, friends and people who suffer from addiction to seek support. Valentish has translated academic research into rememberable highlights that will help you become a better support person to those who may suffer from addiction or more aware of your behaviours if addiction, or addictive behaviours plays a role in your life - be it success, work, drugs, sex, food, or love. This book covers everything from physiology, psychology and real life experience including her lessons through recovery with refreshing cynicism, as though you're talking to a close friend.
SO, YOU'VE BEEN PUBLICLY SHAMED
- Jon Ronson
Fascinating look into the psychology of what makes us feel mortified, embarrassed, and why we're more likely to divulge our deepest secrets when someone else shares theirs (see also: how to un-fuck up). If you love true stories, mixed with people / behaviour / psychology, backed by research and a healthy dose of cynicism - you'll enjoy this.
LOST AND FOUND
- Geneen Roth
I read this as a first step towards addressing my relationship with - or lack of attachment to - money (read also: why uber isn't a bank). Geneen literally teaches people the parallels between emotions, food and money through her first hand stories. Great if you're keen on taking a hard look at some of your money myths and peering into other peoples brains. Swap the lessons about food for basically any challenge you have in your life and there's some pretty confronting lessons in this book. Super interesting.
THE WAY WE'RE WORKING ISN'T WORKING
- Tony Schwartz, Jean Gomes, Catherine McCarthy.
Major research suggests the way we're working is broken. This book suggests the way we kick ass at work is actually less about the work and more about how we're looking after ourselves.
If we can regularly recover, rest and rejuvenate our mental, physical, emotional and spiritual selves we're more likely to produce kick ass work.
The book also delivers super complex info into digestible chunks to outline how our brain works and what emotions and beliefs trigger our not so hot behaviours (see also: my traffic light system if you're interested in the behaviour stuff).
This is the research and practically backed book you want to read if you're a people manager and the book you wanna show your boss if you want to advocate for a different way of working. (See also: perspective: you rock).
- Daniel Goleman
A dry read that has some helpful points for people leaders. Kick ass strategy is more likely to be produced when we combine creativity and insight, argues Goleman. Backed by case studies, he outlines how the biggest tech brands in the world are able to look Internally (at themselves as individuals, what their skill gaps are, address them, recruit to fill them), Externally (what is going on outside the organisation in complimentary industries that can affect how our product / service is sold / distributed), and at the 'Other' detail of the organisation (what's working well? What element of our kick ass company can we better exploit / investigate?). I took out of this book that kick ass brands can exploit (market what they do hella well, shamelessly and to the point) while also looking for opportunities to explore different ways of doing things. I think we can apply this model to our own careers as well as building businesses.
Have reading recommendations? I'd love to hear them!