RECOMMENDED BOOKS

FOCUSING + MINIMIZING DISTRACTIONS

Brain Rules: 12 Principles for Surviving and Thriving at Work, Home, and School (John Medina)

Released February 2008

Developmental molecular biologist, John Medina, outlines 12 ways your brain really works and organizes information. Applying each brain rule, he provides transformative insights for daily life.

Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World (Cal Newport)

Released January 5, 2016

Cal Newport argues the ability to do deep work (focus without  distraction on a cognitively demanding task) is a super skill in our high-tech economy. He describes how to make it a habit, while minimizing shallow work that fragments your focus and adds little value.

Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less (Greg McKeown)

Released April 2014

Greg McKeown discusses the importance of deciding what is absolutely essential and cutting out the rest so you can focus on what really matters.

Make Time: How to Focus on What Matters Every Day (Jake Knapp & John Zeratsky)

Released September 25, 2018

Creators of Google Ventures’ design sprint Jake Knapp and John Zeratsky  explain how to avoid “infinity pools,” design your day around “highlights” and create “might-do lists” to intentionally make time for the things that really matter.

The Distracted Mind: Ancient Brains in a High-Tech World (Adam Gazzaley & Larry D. Rosen)

Released October 16, 2016

Neuroscientist authors explain why checking your emails, text messages, social media etc. are addictive and interferes with meeting high-level goals. They break down what you can do to avoid media multitasking and deal with digital distractions.

Related articles:

How digital distractions drain your productivity, September 12, 2017

5 quick tips on dealing with digital distractions, September 1, 2017

Alternatives to 3 Misused, Overused Productivity Hacks, June 9, 2017

Making time for what really matters, June 22, 2016

FORMING HABITS

Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones (James Clear)

Released October 16, 2018

James Clear discusses how tiny, consistent changes in daily habits lead to big, positive results over time. He outlines a process to develop long-lasting habits by expanding your identity, instead of focusing on outcomes.

The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business (Charles Duhigg)

Released February 28, 2012

Charles Duhigg walks us through the habit loop, a neurological pattern that governs any habit. Understanding the 3 elements – a cue, a routine, and a reward – helps you change bad habits and create good ones.

Related articles:

3 Simple Steps to Build Habits That Stick, December 31, 2017

Breaking bad habits, September 23, 2012

FOLLOWING THROUGH + FINISHING

Finish: Give Yourself the Gift of Done (John Acuff)

Released September 12, 2017

John Acuff provides practical tips on how to finish what you start, and explains why setting big hairy audacious goals (BHAGs) often stops progress toward completing important projects.

The Messy Middle: Finding Your Way Through the Hardest and Most Crucial Part of Any Bold Venture (Scott Belsky)

Released October 2, 2018

Scott Belsky – entrepreneur, Chief Product Officer at Adobe, and product advisor to many startups – provides guidance on how to endure the messy middle in new ventures and creative projects and finish strong.

Willpower: Rediscovering the Greatest Human Strength (Roy F. Baumeister)

Released August 28, 2012

Roy F. Baumesiter notes that willpower is finite and gets depleted, but there are things you can do to strengthen it.

Related articles:

3 Simple Steps to Build Habits That Stick, December 31, 2017

3 steps to get important things done, April 25, 2016

MINDFUL LIVING

Living Deeply: The Art & Science of Transformation in Everyday Life (Marilyn Schlitz, Cassandra Vieten & Tina Amorok)

Released January 3, 2008

The authors pull from scientific research at the Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS) to explore various traditions and practices that result in conscious transformation. Through storytelling and in-depth interviews with teachers of spiritual and religious traditions, they describe how people transform their lives to create a deeper sense of meaning, improve their health, and connect with others.

The Happiness Trap: How to Stop Struggling and Start Living (Russ Harris)

Released January 2007

Russ Harris delves into acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT),  a mindfulness-based program to reduce stress, overcome anxiety and lead a meaningful life.

The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself (Michael A. Singer)

Released October 3, 2007

Spiritual teacher Michael Singer takes you on an inward journey to discover who you are without your fears, addictions, racing thoughts, and barrage of emotions.  He explains that true freedom comes from the willingness to face reality without mental boundaries, live in the moment, and release painful thoughts and memories that keep you stuck.

PERSONAL GROWTH

Mindset: The New Psychology of Success (Carol Dweck)

Released December 26, 2007

World-renowned Stanford University psychologist Carol S. Dweck, Ph. explains why having a growth mindset is key to building strengths and achieving success.

The Accidental Creative: How to Be Brilliant at a Moment’s Notice (Todd Henry)

Released August 27, 2013

Todd Henry provides insights on how to manage your energy, curate stimuli and focus your attention to complete creative projects on demand.

Related articles:

Create for its own sake (even when it won’t bring you fame, fortune or fans), part 1, July 15, 2013

RUNNING A LEAN BUSINESS WITH SUCCESS

It Doesn’t Have to Be Crazy at Work  (Jason Fried & David Heinemeier Hansson) 

Released October 2, 2018

Basecamp founders Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson discuss how to create the ideal company culture—what they call “the calm company.” They argue long hours, excessive workloads and other crazy stuff at work are unnecessary.

Remote: Office Not Required (Jason Fried & David Heinemeier Hansson) 

Released October 29, 2013

Basecamp founders Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson explore the benefits of working remotely and how  to do it effectively.

Rework (Jason Fried & David Heinemeier Hansson) 

Released March 9, 2010
Basecamp founders Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson offer counterintuitive ideas to succeed in running a business without breaking the bank.

Related articles:

Note

Recommended books are listed only if Dyan Williams found them to be insightful and beneficial and believes they may appeal to her website visitors.

Dyanwilliams.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program that allows the earning of fees from qualifying purchases.