Six Books That Will Make You Smarter

The more you learn the more you earn or so the saying goes anyway. The number one way to get smarter? Read. A lot.
Author:
Publish date:

The more you learn the more you earn or so the saying goes anyway. The number one way to get smarter? Read. A lot. It will develop your ability to comprehend both the written and spoken language, improve brain function and make you more creative – among a host of other benefits.

With that being said, finding a good reading list and how it may benefit you individually can be a little difficult at times.

So, if I was to give my 16 year old self a bit of life advice on what I should be reading, the below six books would be a starting point. A range that passes on great practical advice, gets you thinking in a way that your peers aren’t and will set you on a path to get that Boss lifestyle you are after.

Sounds good right?

Emotional Intelligence: 2.0 - Travis Bradberry

A foundational book on what Emotional Intelligence (EQ) and the importance of EQ's role in determining success with people.

EQ (Emotional Intelligence) is now believed to be the strongest indicator of long term professional success, rather than IQ. Having high EQ allows you to effectively build strong interpersonal relationships, based on understanding and compassion. This is an area many young guys struggle with, myself included, so sharpen up and read the damned book.

Take the test as honestly as possible and it will show you where your strengths and weaknesses lie, but make sure you work at them!

Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion - Robert Chialdini

We are all Salespeople, or as Chialdini puts it, Compliance Professionals. Yes you read that right, we sell all day every day. We sell ideas, perspectives and reasons to our friends, families and colleagues.

How we get people to buy into these things is through persuasion. Influence helps you understand what is going on in our day to day lives with large psychological tricks and tools being leveraged to get us to make decisions, buy things and most important comply with others point of views.

How We Decide - Jonah Lehrer

When was the last time you made a bad decision? This book is just great read, particularly for anybody with a passing interest in psychology.

With the famous “Marshmallow Test” (a gratification test in toddlers linked to long term success) a key topic of the book - Jonah Lehrer takes you through a journey of how we all make our highly complex daily decisions, the reasoning behind them and the role of emotion and logic.

How We Decide will help you be aware of your decisions so you can make better ones.

The Personal MBA - Josh Kauffman

Many of you have either been to or are considering going to university. Some of you maybe even contemplating an MBA. Don’t do it, read this book and save yourself thousands upon thousands of dollars and hours and hours of time.

Obviously not as thorough as a full two year Masters of Business Administration, but a great introduction to the many facets of business you will be exposed to as you progress through your career. At which point you will learn significantly more on the job than in a classroom anyway.

Note down pages and topics of interests and look to further study in these areas if you enjoyed them.

The Intelligent Investor - Benjamin Graham

If Warren Buffet speaks, you listen. And when he recommends a book, you read it. And when he considers a book his bible, well you should too.

The Intelligent Investor highlights a approach to investing for sustainable long term financial growth in stock markets. However the key message of the book, defensive investing, can be applied to anywhere you look to put your money.

While at times it can be a hard read (detailed financial statements) you can be rest assured it will give you the financial literacy to set you up for wealth and success.

Again, highlight and flag key chapters here that you may struggle with or that are of particular interest to you. I guarantee you will something new every time you read it again.

The War of Art - Steven Pressfield

Tim Notke once said “hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard” and The War of Art is a perfect example of this.

The War of Art clarifies the daily struggle of applying oneself to be creative. Basically creativity doesn’t simply one day happen and not the next. Creativity happens through conscious application and process or simply by turning up every day to grind it out.

Whether you are looking to write a novel, take brilliant photos or start a business this is a read for you. It will show you only through commitment, perseverance and personal grit will you achieve what you want.

So dust off your e-reader and choose to invest in yourself..