I recently came across a wonderful book that was recommended by Mr.’s inner circle of hedge fund managers and financial investors. The book recommendation came with no profit or incentive to Mr. Stansbury, however a lifetime membership of Stansbury Research investment tools would cost you $25,000. The book is a great resource for anyone who is starting a new business or wants to start a business, wants to make a positive change in their life or simply wants to develop habits that lead to success—everyone should fall under this umbrella! And I’m sharing it for free! If you’ve read The 4-Hour Work Week (and even if you haven’t) I highly recommend James Altucher’s Choose Yourself.
Altucher is a highly successful entrepreneur, hedge fund manager and former host of HBO program, III:am, where he roamed the streets of N.Y.C., interviewing the night-walkers of the city. Through his personable voice Altucher shares his compelling story of having it all, losing it all and losing it all again before choosing himself. He provides a wealth of easily applicable tools for anyone wanting navigation guidance through this scary financial situation that we find ourselves in today.
One of the many positive lifestyle practices that I’ve picked up from Altucher is to skim/read chapters from four different books a day.
1. Choose Yourself, James Altucher
What is the good life? As Philip B. so eloquently put it when we asked him in Mastering The Art Of Beautiful Hair, “Owning your ass at the end of the day.” Amen. To own your life: Set your hours, work with who you want to work with and to have the freedom to make decisions about your future (rather than handing it over to the mercy of a boss)—that is the true experience of luxury as we know it.
Without any further introduction, Altucher’s Choose Yourself is a must-read for anyone wanting a future of owning their ass at the end of the day. Choose Yourself is fresh, real, honest and it walks you through easy daily practices that have lead Altucher (and many others) to success. You can read his Daily Practice chapter here.
2. Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead, Sheryl Sandberg
Following her compelling TED talk Facebook COO, Sheryl Sandberg, makes an empowering case for women in the workforce in Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead. I recently joined a book club headed by my fellow lady, Brooke Harris of SOCI Agency and this is our book of choice. Just a couple of months ago Warren Buffett made a similar call to action for our nation’s ladies in an article he wrote for Fortune magazine. “America has forged this success while utilizing, in large part, only half of the country’s talent,” says Buffett. For so many women in today’s society, choosing yourself means addressing your identity as a professional or a mother. The great balancing act of both identities is a heavy burden for so many women. Yet, we can thrive as both and the image that comes to mind when I think of this SuperWoman is that of new mom, Beyoncé, as told by Gwyneth Paltrow in Vogue‘s March 2013 Power Issue: “Blue was sleeping in her arms, across her body, and B was listening back to what she had been working on,” Paltrow says. “I thought, This is how you do it. You do what you love with who you love included.”
3. The Power Of Intention, Wayne Dyer
I’m familiar with The Secret and The Power Of Now, yet there’s no other book that made me realize the concept of infinity like Wayne Dyer’s The Power Of Intention. Dyer expresses the idea that, “If life is infinite then this is not life….life, in terms of our body and all of its achievements and possessions, which without exception begins and ends in dust, isn’t life itself. Grasping life’s true essence could radically change your life for the better.” It certainly has for me. Reading Dyer’s concepts in conjunction with Altucher’s Choose Yourself, has spurred an incredible inner shift within me and I can only describe it as coming into my Self. When I realized the bigger picture—that we’re infinite beings placed here to do amazing things—two things happened:
1. My sense of responsibility as a global citizen shifted away from my ego and toward helping others beyond my original perception of reach.
2. My self-confidence skyrocketed. Perhaps this very story is testament to it since I’m sharing such personal thoughts. Realizing infinity somehow eliminated fear, if only for a quick second—that’s all one really needs to make a change.
4. Gabby: A Story of Courage and Hope, Gabrielle Giffords and Mark Kelly
One story that has yet to be told is that of Mr.’s. Five years ago, at the height of his career, Mr. Aaron R. Thomas (a wildly successful designer, artist and engineer) was expanding his business and during a walk-through of a new factory he was potentially leasing, Mr. was hit on the head by a faulty steel roof hatch door sending him 24-feet to the concrete floor. Among his many injuries was damage to the right frontal lobe of his brain. I met Mr. after his fall, yet our journey has been a long one to his recovery. Many of my friends and family have not understood the effects and damage of a brain injury and much pain has transpired in the healing process. In choosing myself, I’ve come to understand how critical it is to share our story.
Former congresswoman, Gabrielle Giffords, was shot in the head at a meeting with constituents on January 8, 2011. Her story, told with husband and astronaut, Mark Kelly, is a triumphant one and Giffords was also featured alongside B in Vogue‘s Power Issue for her heroic advocacy on gun control. Reading Gabby’s story reminds me that it takes true love to conquer the devil that is a brain injury (which so many of our veterans are coming home with) and that our story is yet to be told, baby.
I love you. xo Le Choi Ninja