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“Only when we realize we can’t hold on to anything can we begin to relax our efforts to control our experience.”

In Radical Acceptance, Tara Brach explores in depth how Buddhist teachings can transform our fear and shame. Through meditation, mindfulness practices and fully understanding the healing power of compassion, we can discover the very real possibility of meeting imperfection in ourselves and others with courage and love – and so transform our lives.

Radical Acceptance does not mean defining ourselves by our limitations. It is not an excuse for withdrawal.

Part of the practice of Radical Acceptance is knowing that, whatever arises, whatever we can’t embrace with loveimprisons us — no matter what it is. If we are at war with it, we stay in prison. It is for the freedom and healing of our own hearts, that we learn to recognize and allow our inner life.

According to Brach, there are two wings of radical acceptance: seeing clearly (Mindfulness) and holding our experience with compassion (Self Compassion).

 We suffer when we cling to or resist experience, when we want life different than it is. As the saying goes: “Pain is inevitable, but suffering is optional.

Here are my Favourite take-aways from reading, Radical Acceptance: Awakening the Love that Heals Fear and Shame by Tara Brach:

“The World Owes You Nothing—Except Opportunity”

Shark Tank is my favourite Business Reality TV Show and Robert Herjavec is my favourite shark. I have been a fan of the show since 2011 and I find the show to be both entertainment and educational. In You Don’t Have to Be a Shark, Robert transcends pure sales technique and teaches “non-business people” what they need to know in order to sell themselves successfully. The books theme:

Great salespeople are made, not born, and no one achieves success in life without knowing how to sell.

No matter what you want to achieve or who you want to become, the ability to sell anything—including yourself—is one of the most rewarding talents to acquire in life. Why? Because it is universal. It is difficult to imagine any aspect of life that would not benefit from knowing and practicing the skills of making a sale.

Here are my favourite takeaways from reading, You Don’t Have to Be a Shark by Robert Herjavec:

“In spite of illness, in spite even of the arch-enemy, sorrow, one can remain alive long past the usual date of disintegration if one is unafraid of change, insatiable in intellectual curiosity, interested in big things, and happy in small ways.” – Edith Wharton

At age 52, after selling the company he founded and ran as CEO for 24 years, rebel boutique hotelier Chip Conley was looking at an open horizon in midlife. Then he received a call from the young founders of Airbnb, asking him to help grow their disruptive start-up into a global hospitality giant. He had the industry experience, but Conley was lacking in the digital fluency of his 20-something colleagues. He didn’t write code, or have an Uber or Lyft app on his phone, was twice the age of the average Airbnb employee, and would be reporting to a CEO young enough to be his son.

Conley quickly discovered that while he’d been hired as a teacher and mentor, he was also in many ways a student and intern. What emerged is the secret to thriving as a mid-life worker: learning to marry wisdom and experience with curiosity, a beginner’s mind, and a willingness to evolve, all hallmarks of the “Modern Elder.”

Part manifesto and part playbook, Wisdom@Work ignites an urgent conversation about ageism in the workplace, calling on us to treat age as we would other type of diversity. In the process, Conley liberates the term “elder” from the stigma of “elderly,” and inspires us to embrace wisdom as a path to growing whole, not old. Whether you’ve been forced to make a mid-career change, are choosing to work past retirement age, or are struggling to keep up with the millennials rising up the ranks,

“If wisdom were offered me on the one condition that I should keep it shut away and not divulge it to anyone, I should reject it. There is no enjoying the possession of anything valuable unless one has someone to share it with.” – Seneca

Here are my favourite take ways from reading, Wisdom at Work: The Making of a Modern Elder by Chip Conley;

“Anyone can become angry—that is easy, but to be angry with the right person at the right time, and for the right purpose and in the right way—that is not within everyone’s power, and that is not easy”. – Aristotle

Anger can be a powerful and positive motivator, useful to move us toward loving action to right wrongs and correct injustice—but it also can become a raging, uncontrolled force. Gary Chapman shares some very great insights on the very powerful emotion: “Anger” with lots of examples and learnings from the Christian scripture.

“The dictionary describes anger as “a strong passion or emotion of displeasure, and usually antagonism, excited by a sense of injury or insult.” Although we normally think of anger as an emotion, it is in reality a cluster of emotions involving the body, the mind, and the will.” Anger is a response to some event or situation in life that causes us irritation, frustration, pain, or other displeasure. Thousands of events and situations have the potential for provoking anger.

“The greatest remedy for anger is delay.” – Seneca

Here are my favourite takeaways from reading, Anger: Taming a Powerful Emotion by Gary Chapman:

“As long as you’re green you’re growing, as soon as you’re ripe you start to rot.”

Ray Kroc was a quintessential salesman with a bias for action before turning McDonald’s into a household name; Ray worked various jobs selling paper cups, as a real estate agent, sometimes playing the piano in bands, milkshake mixer salesman, among other gigs. The 2016 movie, “The Founder,” starring Michael Keaton as Ray Kroc, portrays the story of his creation of the McDonald’s fast-food restaurant chain. 

The title “Grinding it out” brings to mind the long apprenticeship of over thirty years during which Ray Kroc worked for others as a salesman and sales manager and later in his own small business. For the great opportunity of his life did not come until 1954 when he was fifty-two, an age when some executives are beginning to contemplate the greener pastures of retirement.

There is a tide in the affairs of men, Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune; Omitted, all the voyage of their life Is bound in shallows and in miseries. On such a full sea are we now afloat, And we must take the current when it serves, Or lose our ventures. —Shakespeare, Julius Caesar

After World War II, Kroc found employment as a milkshake mixer salesman for the foodservice equipment manufacturer Prince Castle. When Prince Castle Multi-Mixer sales plummeted because of competition from lower-priced Hamilton Beach products, Kroc was impressed by Richard and Maurice McDonald who had purchased eight of his Multi-Mixers for their San Bernardino, California restaurant, and visited them in 1954.

By the time of Kroc’s death, the chain had 7,500 outlets in the United States and 31 other countries and territories. The total system-wide sales of its restaurants were more than $8 billion in 1983, and his personal fortune amounted to some $600 million.

McDonald’s is the world’s largest restaurant chain by revenue, serving over 69 million customers daily in over 100 countries across 37,855 outlets as of 2018. McDonald’s is the world’s second-largest private employer with 1.7 million employees (behind Walmart with 2.3 million employees). The $100 billion in sales generated by McDonald’s company-owned and franchise restaurants in 2019 accounts for almost 4% of the estimated $2.5 trillion global restaurant industry.

Here are my favourite take aways from reading, Grinding It Out: The Making of McDonald’s by Ray Kroc:

Everyman makes his own happiness and is responsible for his own  problems.

“Hope is a path on the mountainside. At first there is no path. But then there are people passing that way. And there is a path.” -LU XUN

Jacqueline’s story is an inspiring and refreshing story on starting a sustainable nonprofit organization. She takes the reader on a journey of persistence, adventure across Africa, understanding poverty & world views, becoming passionate about your project, delivering a new model for empowering and funding sustainable projects. She shares heartwarming stories about forming a long-lasting bond with the community she was trying to serve, the need to listen, and determination to get things done against all odds.

Jacqueline Novogratz founded Acumen, a non-profit global venture capital fund whose goal is to use entrepreneurial approaches to address global poverty.

Jacqueline Novogratz left a career in international banking to spend her life on a quest to understand global poverty and find powerful new ways of tackling it. From her first stumbling efforts as a young idealist venturing forth in Africa to the creation of the trailblazing organization she runs today, Novogratz tells gripping stories with unforgettable characters. She shows how traditional charity often fails, but how a new form of philanthropic investing called “patient capital” can help make people self-sufficient and can change millions of lives.

“If you don’t like the way the world is, you change it. You have an obligation to change it. You just do it one step at a time.” -MARIAN WRIGHT EDELMAN

Here are my favourite take aways from reading, The Blue Sweater: Bridging the Gap Between Rich and Poor in an Interconnected World by Jacqueline Novogratz:

“Poverty won’t allow him to lift up his head; dignity won’t allow him to bow it down.”-MADAGASY PROVERB

In a crowded marketplace, fitting in is failing. In a busy marketplace, not standing out is the same as being invisible.

Purple Cow by Seth Godin is one of my favourite business marketing book, the key concept in the book is very simple: to convert people to become raving fans in our fast paced world, you need to create something remarkable worth talking about.

Cows, after you’ve seen one, or two, or ten, are boring. A Purple Cow, though…now that would be something. Purple Cow describes something phenomenal, something counterintuitive and exciting and flat out unbelievable. Every day, consumers come face to face with a lot of boring stuff-a lot of brown cows – but you can bet they won’t forget a Purple Cow. And it’s not a marketing function that you can slap on to your product or service. Purple Cow is inherent. It’s built right in, or it’s not there. Period. 

Here are my favourite takeaways from reading,Purple Cow by Seth Godin:

Perhaps the best analogy of intelligence is a car. A faster engine can get you places more quickly if you know how to use it correctly. But simply having more horsepower won’t guarantee that you will arrive at your destination safely. Without the right knowledge and equipment – the brakes, the steering wheel, the speedometer, a compass and a good map – a fast engine may just lead to you driving in circles – or straight into oncoming traffic. And the faster the engine, the more dangerous you are.

The Intelligence Trap Book is about why intelligent people act stupidly – and why in some cases they are even more prone to error than the average person. The book focuses on the strategies that we can all employ to avoid the same mistakes: lessons that will help anyone to think more wisely and rationally in this post-truth world.

The Intelligence Trap by David Robson is a great read that sheds light on many cognitive biases we all have; David shares some great strategies for identifying them and some insights on working on them. It is not what we know that gets us into trouble; it is what we think we know for sure that ain’t so. The author gives various examples of how brilliant people make seemingly stupid mistakes.

Intelligence can help you to learn and recall facts, and process complex information quickly, but you also need the necessary checks and balances to apply that brainpower correctly. Without them, greater intelligence can actually make you more biased in your thinking.

Here are my favourite take aways from reading, The Intelligence Trap: Why Smart People Make Dumb Mistakes by David Robson:

“People change when they … Hurt enough that they have to, Learn enough that they want to, and Receive enough that they are able to.” – John C. Maxwell

The Catalyst book by Jonah Berger is a great and transformative book for me personally as I have tendencies of wanting to change people (Messiah Syndrome); for example, whenever I finish a book, watch a documentary, or get exposed to new information, I want to share it with everybody but have come to realize people are at different levels and period in their lives (they change when they are ready). Anytime I want to get frustrated with people and change, I remind myself that first: I might be wrong and I also remind myself of the words of Author John C. Maxwell on Change:

“People change when they … Hurt enough that they have to, Learn enough that they want to, and Receive enough that they are able to.” – John C. Maxwell

Jonah shares a great framework called REDUCE (Reactance, Endowment, Distance, Uncertainty, and Corroborating Evidence) for effecting change, and I absolutely love it.

The Catalyst: How to Change Anyone’s Mind introduces a revolutionary approach to change. Successful change isn’t about pushing harder or exerting more energy. It’s about removing barriers. Overcoming resistance by reducing friction and lowering the hurdles to action.  Discover the five hidden factors that impede change, and how by mitigating them, you can change anything.

Books Theme:

How to overcome inertia, incite action, and change minds—not by being more persuasive, or pushing harder, but by being a catalyst. By removing the barriers to change. Identifying what is blocking or preventing change. And eliminating these obstacles to action.

The book is about finding the parking brakes. Discovering the hidden barriers preventing change. Identifying the root or core issues that are thwarting action and learning how to mitigate them.

Here are my Favourite Takeaways from reading, The Catalyst: How to Change Anyone’s Mind by Jonah Berger:

BUMMER MACHINE (Social Media Platforms) “Behaviors of Users Modified, and Made into an Empire for Rent

In this insightful book, Jaron Lanier, Interdisciplinary Scientist at Microsoft Research and one of the pioneers of Virtual Reality, shares 10 compelling arguments on the need to delete our social media accounts. Before reading the book, I have already left most of the social media platforms and I am only present on Linkedin for now.

Jaron argues in ten ways that what has become suddenly normal—pervasive surveillance and constant, subtle manipulation—is unethical, cruel, dangerous, and inhumane. Dangerous?

Not only is your worldview distorted, but you have less awareness of other people’s worldviews. The version of the world you are seeing is invisible to the people who misunderstand you, and vice versa.

  • Your understanding of others has been disrupted because you don’t know what they’ve experienced in their feeds, while the reverse is also true; the empathy others might offer you is challenged because you can’t know the context in which you’ll be understood.
  • You’re probably becoming more of an asshole, but you’re also probably sadder; another pair of BUMMER disruptions that are mirror images. Your ability to know the world, to know truth, has been degraded, while the world’s ability to know you has been corrupted. Politics has become unreal and terrifying, while economics has become unreal and unsustainable: two sides of the same coin.

Here are my favourite take aways from reading, Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now:

Productivity is about making certain choices in certain ways.

Theme: If you can become more motivated, more focused, better at setting goals and making good decisions, then you’re a long way down the path to becoming more productive.

“Productivity is about recognizing choices that other people often overlook. It’s about making certain decisions in certain ways. The way we choose to see our own lives; the stories we tell ourselves, and the goals we push ourselves to spell out in detail; the culture we establish among teammates; the ways we frame our choices and manage the information in our lives. Productive people and companies force themselves to make choices most other people are content to ignore. Productivity emerges when people push themselves to think differently.”

At the core of Smarter Faster Better are eight key concepts—from motivation and goal setting to focus and decision making—that explain why some people and companies get so much done. Drawing on the latest findings in neuroscience, psychology, and behavioral economics—as well as the experiences of CEOs, educational reformers, four-star generals, FBI agents, airplane pilots, and Broadway songwriters—the book posits that the most productive people, companies, and organizations don’t merely act differently.

They view the world, and their choices, in profoundly different ways.

Here are my favourite take aways from reading, Smarter Faster Better by Charles Duhigg:

“With the possible exception of Henry Ford, Sam Walton is the entrepreneur of the century.”- TOM PETERS, co-author of In Search of Excellence

Made In America is the story of how Sam Walton built a retailing empire, “Walmart” from a humble upbringing. He started it from a single dime store in a hardscrabble cotton town (Arkansas) into the largest retailer in the world. In a story rich with anecdotes and the “rules of the road” of both Main Street and Wall Street, Sam Walton chronicles the inspiration, heart, and optimism that propelled him to lasso the American Dream.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. grew to be the world’s largest corporation by revenue and the biggest private employer in the world. For a while, Walton was the richest man in America. As of July 31, 2020, Walmart has 11,496 stores and clubs in 27 countries, operating under 56 different names.

I think it must be human nature that when somebody homegrown gets on to something, the folks around them sometimes are the last to recognize it.

The company which Sam built Walmart is the world’s largest company by revenue, with US$514.405 billion, according to the Fortune Global 500 list in 2019. It is also the largest private employer in the world, with 2.2 million employees. It is a publicly-traded family-owned business, as the Walton family controls the company. Sam Walton’s heirs own over 50 percent of Walmart by holding company Walton Enterprises and their holdings.

Sam Walton was a relentless, hands on entrepreneur who led by example. In his own words:

I don’t know that anybody else has ever done it quite like me: started out as a pure neophyte, learned his trade, swept the floor, kept the books, trimmed the windows, weighed the candy, rung the cash register, installed the fixtures, remodeled the stores, built an organization of this size and quality, and kept on doing it right up to the end because they enjoyed it so much. No one that I know of has done it that way.

Here are my favourite take aways from reading,Made In America by Sam Walton:


Far better to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in the gray twilight that knows not victory, nor defeat. – THEODORE ROOSEVELT, 1899

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Built to Last is a great book that outlines the results of a six-year research project at the Stanford University Graduate School of Business, conducted by James C. Collins and Jerry I. Porras. The book explores what leads to enduringly great companies, the authors examined eighteen truly exceptional and long-lasting companies and studied each in direct comparison to one of its top competitors. They examined the companies from their very beginnings to the present day — as start-ups, as midsize companies, and as large corporations. 

Built to Last is one of the most influential business books have read multiple times as the concepts in the book is evergreen: Clock Building, vs Time Telling, Preserve the Core / Stimulate Progress, Big Hairy Audacious Goals (BHAGs), Try a Lot of Stuff and Keep What works, Cult-Like cultures, among others.

Here are my favourite take aways from reading, Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies by Jim Collins:

The study found a negative correlation between early entrepreneurial success and becoming a highly visionary company. The long race goes to the tortoise, not the hare,

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“Do all the right things to precision and “the score will take care of itself”

The Score Takes Care of Itself was recommended by Jack Dorsey at Y Combinator’s Startup School 2013, and John C. Maxwell says the book is one of his favorite books on Leadership.

Bill Walsh was an American football coach who served as the head coach of the San Francisco 49ers and the Stanford Cardinal. Walsh went 102–63–1 (wins-losses-ties) with the 49ers, winning 10 of his 14 postseason games along with six division titles, three NFC Championship titles, and three Super Bowls. He was named NFL Coach of the Year in 1981 and 1984. In 1993, he was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Bill Walsh was one of the NFL’s pivotal figures, a leader, head coach, and general manager whose innovations changed how football is played and whose San Francisco 49er dynasty—five Super Bowl championships in fourteen years—ranks among the great achievements in sports history.

“Most big things are simple in the specific, much less so in the general.”

The Score Takes Care of Itself is Bill’s very personal and, at times, painful account of the leadership lessons he learned during his life and his conclusions on how they might help you overcome your challenges as a leader. The book is based on Bill’s extensive conversations on his philosophy of leadership with best-selling author Steve Jamison.

Here are my favorite take-aways from reading, The Score Takes Care of Itself: My Philosophy of Leadership by Bill Wash.:

  • Your effort in the beginning is part of a continuum of effort; your Standard of Performance is part of a continuum of standards. Today’s effort becomes tomorrow’s result. The quality of those efforts becomes the quality of your work. One day is connected to the following day and the following month to the succeeding years.
  • Your own Standard of Performance becomes who and what you are. You and your organization achieve greatness.

A good leader is always learning. The great leaders start learning young and continue until their last breath.

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The object of life is not to be on the side of the masses, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.~ Marcus Aurelius

MJ DeMarco had an epiphany when he had a chance encounter with a Lamborghini Countach owner; the meeting led him to have a paradigm shift about wealth. The Millionaire Fastlane is the belief that creating wealth need not take 50 years of financial mediocrity devoured by decades of work, decades of saving, decades of mindless frugality, and decades of 8% stock market returns

The book has a get rich scheme title, but it is not the theme of the book; the Fastlane is just a metaphor on the path to creating wealth, which the author classified as the sidewalk, the slow lane, and the Fastlane. The author deliberately chose the name of the book because he knows the society as we have it structured is attuned to shortcut, quick fixes, and immediacy.

“The goal of the book is to change your perception about wealth and money. Believe that retirement at any age is possible. Believe that old age is not a prerequisite to wealth. Believe that a job is just as risky as a business. Believe that the stock market isn’t a guaranteed path to riches. Believe that you can be retired just a few years from today.”

Here are my favourite take aways from reading, The Millionaire Fastlane by MJ DeMarco.