#13: timeless reads

What’s on my mind

When someone asks me for book recommendations, I rarely have an answer ready (unless I know them very well).

Not all books influence everyone in the same way.

Timing plays a big role. 

What someone else might find intriguing could be irrelevant to others.

It also depends a lot on their life experiences and goals: where they’ve been and where they’re going.

Despite that, here are 5 timeless reads for thriving in life and work that I do recommend reading. Not just once, but multiple times:

  1. Meditations

  2. As A Man Thinketh

  3. The Four Agreements

  4. Man’s Search for Meaning

  5. The Greatest Salesman in the World

What’s your one timeless recommendation?

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This week’s stories

🔖 Why you should summarize the books you read

Reading is one thing, but benefiting from what we read is another matter altogether.

The art of capturing and summarizing what you read can influence how much of the book you’ll end up retaining and acting on.

And the fact that you’re constantly looking out for what’s important and what’s not, helps you practice your judgement.

Also, something crucial happens when you invest a decent amount of time summarizing what you read:

10 to 20 hours is a significant amount of time to spend with someone’s thinking. It is more like doing an apprenticeship or taking a class than reading a book.

Of course you shouldn’t be summarizing (or reading) any book. Only great books.

They have to be interesting, unique, and helpful.

{20-min read}

👓 The polymath playbook

You must’ve heard the saying, “A jack of all trades is a master of none.”

Did you know there’s an extended version to that?

A jack of all trades is a master of none, but oftentimes better than a master of one.

And the reason for the former being more popular is the modern society’s preference for specialization.

It wants you to stay in your lane. 

Yet in this ever-changing global environment, being adaptable is key to thrive.

You need to constantly reinvent yourself and your career in the process.

For your next pursuit (or side hustle), think what’s that thing you secretly want to do?

What if in choosing what deserves your focus, you paid more attention to the excitement you get from it?

What if, you prioritized fun and joy over money, status or power?

Or at least considered them as a factor to start with.

{9-min read}

☕️ A daily digest of your favourites

There’s so much knowledge and information to stay on top of everyday.

And it’s too easy to miss the things we care about if we don’t catch them at the right time.

Also, what you often truly care about gets mixed with stuff that has little or no relevance to you.

What if you could aggregate all your favourite sources in one place and get a summary of them right in your inbox the next day.

For example, a summary of all the tweets from you favourite accounts over the last 24 hours…

For the past 2 weeks, Mailbrew has become one of my favourite tools to do just that:

Surfacing the most relevant information directly in my inbox.

Every morning I get a daily digest filled with tweets, articles and news that matters to me. 

And the feeling of missing out on what I truly care about is gone!

Exclusive for Out of Curiosity readers:

You can get 10% off your subscription if you join with the following link (valid for the next 7 days):

Get 10% off a premium subscription

(There’s no incentive in this for me. I really like what Mailbrew does and wanted to make it easier for my readers to use it too. So I asked Mailbrew’s founders for a special discount code.)

🖼 Minimum viable creativity

A minimum viable product (MVP) isn’t perfect.

But it allows you to ship fast and get a large amount of relevant feedback from your customers.

You can apply the same concept to your creative process.

Producing faster to collect feedback from your audience.

And remembering that it doesn’t need to be perfect.

But it has to be good enough to produce enough actionable feedback for your next iteration.

{2-min read}

🤔 Why success alone won’t make you happy

Feeling too dependent on anything can be viewed as addiction. And success is no different in that sense: a lot of it can generate addictive properties (although not in conventional medical terms).

But success can also resemble addiction in how it influences human relationships:

People sacrifice their links with others for their true love: success. They travel for business on anniversaries; they miss Little League games and recitals while working long hours.

Would you rather be successful or happy?

How fragmented are these two concepts to you?

Decide how much success alone contributes to your happiness.

{7-min read}

Final Thought


#10 | don’t take it personally

#11 | one percent better

#12 | needing nothing