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#120 | The Wisdom Project Wrapped
Welcome to Wisdom Letter #120
Continuing our series of the best pieces of content we read this year. Today we’re talking about the best books we read in 2021.
In case you missed the last couple of emails you can check them out here -
Now, let’s get into this week’s post about books.
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Earlier this year we pledged to read fewer books in 2021, but apply everything that we do read. (More about that in our post - Knowledge vs Wisdom | Wisdom Letter #80)
And one of our goals this year was that at least one of us is able to quit our full-time job and go solo. Which eventually I (Ayush) was able to achieve.
But this has meant that most of the books we read this year were about entrepreneurship and business related.
Also, we don’t read any book cover to cover anymore.
Our focus is to get the most applicable insights from it and move on. So we “finished” very few books this year.
But we did read quite a few and found the ones mentioned below to be very good.
(not including book links, you can find them by searching them on Google or your local bookstore)
Now let’s go, we’ve divided these books into categories -
📙Atomic Habits by James Clear
This is a foundational book in behavior change. We re-read it this year, and ended up building an educational product around it.
To help more people apply Atomic Habits in their life. You can find out more about it here - The Toolkit of Atomic Habits.
📙Make Time by Jake Knapp and John Zeratsky
This is about time management from 2 super productive people who previously worked at Google.
Didn’t read it cover to cover, but one important lesson is that time blocking workds better than to do lists.
And there’s plenty of evidence to support this thesis.
📙Indistractable by Nir Eyal
Another book that preaches blocking time on the calendar to get stuff done. Do listen to Nir’s interview on The Knowledge Project podcast, even if you don’t read the book.
Writing is a key skill we wanted to double down on this year. It’s one of those skills that can create multiple avenues of generating money.
📙Storyworthy by Matthew Dicks
This book is about storytelling.
It can be applied to almost every aspect of life, but we’ve found writing to be the most useful way of storytelling.
Mindblowing lesson - Every story is about a 5 second transformation. Even if it’s a 3 hour movie.
📙The Art and Business of Online Writing by Nicolas Cole
Online writing is very different from traditional writing that we’re taught in school. Reader’s attention spans are dropping, you want to hold their attention and make them take an action.
Cole is an expert on this. He was a number 1 writer on Quora for many years, has a thriving ghostwriting business, and even teaches writing nowadays.
📙Ogilvy on Advertising by David Ogilvy
This is a classic book on advertising.
Timeless principles about copywriting from the best in the business.
A bit dense, but worth every minute you spend on this.
📙The Mom Test by Rob Fitzpatrick
How to talk to your users.
As a startup founder, how do you do problem discovery as well as early sales through user conversations.
Read more here - Ask Questions Even Your Mom Can’t Lie To | Rob Fitzpatrick
📙The Embedded Entrepreneur by Arvid Kahl
A book about how to build a bootstrapped business by embedding yourself in a community.
Great book if you want to build a self-funded startup and don’t want to go the VC route.
📙The Millionaire Fastlane by MJ Demarco
Skip the clickbaity title, he doesn’t say you can become a millionaire fast. He says there are ways you can get there faster.
There are certain kinds of businesses which are more likely to turn into million dollar businesses.
Read a good summary here -
📙Take your shot by Robin Waite
This is a very short book about pricing your work. Especially important for freelancers.
The author uses a nice story to explain how you can make more money doing less work.
📙Show your work by Austin Kleon
Amazing book about creative workers and how they can share their journey of building.
Trying to deploy the lessons from this book in this newsletter and on Twitter every day.
The hard copy looks beautiful and makes for a lovely coffee table book.
That’s it for now.
You can find more recommendations from earlier posts -
Book recommendations from last year -
As you might have guessed, we’re big on books. I think they are great tools for moving forward towards our goals in life.
Hope you find a couple of books interesting here.
👀 Next Week
Next week we’re looking at the best of The Wisdom Project in 2021.
The post articles or posts that our readers loved. Should be fun, looking forward to it.
Sin up to stay in the loop :)
📂 From the archives
This week, that year -
Thank you for reading🙏
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Ayush & Aditi
PS: This post is from the past, we are on a break :)