Carefully Selected Business and Life Strategy Books
Business and Life Strategy Books
These business & life strategy books to recommend to you, are the best collection of books ever written on strategy.
Every now and then we face deadlocks in our careers and lives. these deadlocks comes from lack of options and options comes to us from reading and expanding our knowledge.
An educated well read person have more options in life. In fact I believe that the word "Education" originally meant exactly this, "options in life" and the ability to solve problems as we encounter them.
Chin-Ning Chu minces no words in this decisive, blunt, series of ideas and suggestions that aim to teach us the ways of the "Thick Face/Black Heart" doctrine.
The title (as well as her ideas) comes from a series of disciplines taught by an ancient Chinese "master" who spoke about the best ways to conquer enemies, as well as gain the advantages necessary to succeed in a "kill or be killed" society.
As many self-help life strategy books try to accomplish, this book discusses the best ways to not be taken advantage of by others, as well as living a life that you can be proud of: a life where we are urged to be patient when trying to achieve our dreams by "giving life time".
But, unlike most of the other "success"/garbage books out there, "Thick Face" espouses the unconventional idea that we can succeed THE WAY WE ARE, but by thinking about things, and perceiving things differently than we currently do. What a novel idea.
Another thing I like about this life strategy books is Chin-ning Chu awareness that life is a tiresome struggle, as she talks about her own battles, in business, and in life itself, but her discourse on being patient, working with what we have at our disposal right now, as well as the art of enduring, is very powerful, and refreshingly different.
Another theme she tackles effectively is not judging ourselves harshly. For example, one little section talks about the idea of our Western society, and our obsession of being up and at 'em early, and getting all of our work done, etc., doing the "9-5" grind. But Nin-Chu says: if you're a person who stays up late every night, and sleeps in every day, make the most of this lifestyle choice. Find, or create a job, that will allow you to abide by these habits.
She then talks about famous artists and inventors who never abide by the conventional "9 to 5" Western work ethic, but succeeded dramatically.
When I read this book, as I have done several times (and I'm not one of those readers that re-reads life strategy books very often), I always feel as though I am sitting with a wise sage that has seen everything that life has to offer, and she, rather dispassionately, has taken this experience, and is ever so graciously showing me how to make use of everything: the good, the bad, the trivial, and the seemingly life-ending.
Remember: I am not a corny "self-help" goof that buys into any of the stuff out there today that gets on the Best Seller Lists. I am somewhat cynical at the ripe old age of 52, but have found THE BOOK that always seems to find me, and guide me, whenever I need it, which is quite often, as I get older.
I always seemed to get annoyed with the readers that brag about their "worn out, dog-eared" books, and all of the highlighting they do in them, as well as scribble notes on the borders of the pages, to make it seem like they're well-read, and somewhat artsy, or intelligent, and quirky. Alas, I have found the one book that I own (and I own many) that has earned this "worn out", "old pair of shoes" status. "Thick Face" is a masterpiece.
"Learning the game of power requires a certain way of looking at the world, a shifting of perspective," writes Robert Greene.
Mastery of one's emotions and the arts of deception and indirection are, he goes on to assert, essential.
The 48 laws outlined in this book "have a simple premise: certain actions always increase one's power ... while others decrease it and even ruin us."
The laws cull their principles from many great schemers--and scheming instructors--throughout history, from Sun-Tzu to Talleyrand, from Casanova to con man Yellow Kid Weil.
They are straightforward in their amoral simplicity: "Get others to do the work for you, but always take the credit," or "Discover each man's thumbscrew."
Each chapter provides examples of the consequences of observance or transgression of the law, along with "keys to power," potential "reversals" (where the converse of the law might also be useful), and a single paragraph cleverly laid out to suggest an image (such as the aforementioned thumbscrew); the margins are filled with illustrative quotations.
Practitioners of one-upmanship have been given a new, comprehensive training manual, as up-to-date as it is timeless.
The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind
By Julian Jaynes
"The book of The Century if Not of All Time"
The heroes of the Iliad and Old Testament often heard the Voices of gods (or Cod) giving them orders or advice.
But were such scenes a literary convention - or could they possibly have represented real experiences?
Julian Jaynes's path breaking thesis argues that the god-run people of the distant past were fundamentally different from today's introspective, problem-solving men and women.
Consciousness as we now know it is something we were forced to learn around 3,000 years ago, in response to specific catastrophes.
A tiny bridge between brain hemispheres may provide the vital
pathway. Jayne’s assembles an astonishing range of evidence to
support these startling and controversial claims in a book that
has made us rethink almost every aspect of our history and
Though he writes with grace and wit, he unfolds his case with the utmost intellectual rigor...
'The Origin of Consciousness has a powerful plausibility' - The New York Times
'When Julian Jaynes ... speculates that until late in the second millennium B.C., men had no consciousness but were automatically obeying the voices of gods, we are astounded, but compelled to follow this remarkable thesis through all the corroborative evidence' -John Updike in the New Yorker
! Truly mind-blowing - something crazy happened between the
Iliad and the Odyssey — and we've all been crazy ever since' - The Times educational supplement book of the year
Jaynes theorized that a shift from bicameralism marked the beginning of introspection and consciousness as we know it today.
According to Jaynes, this bicameral mentality began malfunctioning or "breaking down" during the second millennium BC.
He speculates that primitive ancient societies tended to collapse periodically (as in Egypt's Old Kingdom and the periodically vanishing cities of the Mayas) due to increased societal complexity that could not be sustained by this bicameral mindset.
The mass migrations of the second millennium BC created a rash of unexpected situations and stresses that required ancient minds to become more flexible and creative.
Self-awareness, or consciousness, was the culturally evolved solution to this problem. Thus cultural necessity (that of interacting with migrating tribes, or surviving as a member of such) forced humanity to become self-aware or perish. Thus consciousness, like bicamerality, emerged as a neurological adaptation to social complexity.
Jaynes further argues that divination, prayer and oracles arose during this breakdown period, in an attempt to summon instructions from the "gods" whose voices could no longer be heard.
The consultation of special bicamerally-operative individuals, or of casting lots and so forth, was a response to this loss, a transitional era depicted for example in the book of 1 Samuel.
It was also evidenced in children who could communicate with the gods, but as their neurology was set by language and society, they gradually lost that ability. Those who continued prophesying, being bicameral according to Jaynes, could be killed.
Leftovers of the bicameral mind today, according to Jaynes, include religion, hypnosis, possession, schizophrenia and the general sense of need for external authority in decision-making.
The 33 Strategies of War By Rober Green
Robert Greene is a prolific research and thinker who has made a habit out of writing masterpieces that explore all nuances of human behaviour.
In his latest tome, he follows the same approach as in his previous bestsellers by leading off each chapter with a quick and easy to read summary that gives you the essence of the strategy and the stories that follow.
Then he leads you on one fascinating historical excursion after another that brings each strategy to life through the exploits of some of history’s most famous and notorious characters.
The beauty of his approach is that there is something for everyone in this book.
You may read about a tactic that is highly amusing, but that you say to yourself, "I could never do that." Then in the next chapter you may say, "That's fits in with my personality.
I can do that." That's how I felt about his strategies for laying back and appearing to not care, and about his strategy for taking an unassailable position.
A brief story in chapter 4 on developing a sense of extreme urgency was well worth the cost of the book to me.
It talks about Fyodor Dostoevsky and how a change in his perspective on the value of life lead to a greater appreciation for every moment, and to an era of rampant productivity that continued until his death.
Because I'm a writer, I spend a good part of everyday writing and thinking about my work. After reading about Dostoevsky, I immediately felt an even higher sense of purpose and motivation.
You really can't go wrong with this book. It is very entertaining and educational. Beyond that, you could pick up some sage, time-tested advice for improving both your business and your life.
There are more books on strategy for You here: enjoy.