NOTE: This blog post was also a podcast on the Resist Average Academy, which you can access on this page.
Top Books For Entrepreneurs In 2019
With 2019 nearly halfway over —it’s time to take a moment and reflect on the best books of the year to this point.
Specifically, I’m going to be talking in the context of entrepreneurship, personal growth, self development, habit formation and other similar niches.
Typically, I read at least two books per week —although this year I slowed down since I released The Leap Of Your Life in April and needed a break after way-too-many Barnes and Nobles afternoons and endless Amazon orders.
But now I’m back full force and stronger than ever.
In this blog post, I’ll be sharing the title, key themes —as well as who would benefit from diving into each book and what I found to be particularly unique or valuable.
NOTE: I am only showcasing books that were published in 2019.
Remember: if you commit to reading ten pages a day, that can add up to 12-20 books per year —making you an unstoppable force of perspective and expertise.
Let’s get started.
Digital Minimalism, Cal Newport
Cal Newport is one of my favorite authors, and I always love reading his work. He’s been on the podcast of course, and Deep Work radically changed the way I approached my work and writing on a daily basis.
I knew I’d love his latest —Digital Minimalism. After reading the first couple chapters, I started to have a disdain for my phone. I noticed how much social media was consuming my life and stopping me from creative work. I even told Taylor I was going on a hard break for a while.
There is no doubt this book is a wake up call to our hyper distracted, over-stimulated world of life and business. It showcases research and real world tactical tools to help fight the battle against the world’s biggest companies to re-claim your most important asset: attention. As someone who runs an online business, it can be easy to talk myself into saying I am doing work, and then scrolling incessantly with no purpose.
Like anything, social media is a tool. And much like Law of Diminishing Returns states: more is not more. At some point, it goes from a way to create and connect to a source of distraction. For this, Cal Newport recommends taking a 30 day digital fast.
While I haven’t completed the 30 Day prescription inside of Digital Minimalism, I’ve introduced new rules and principles —including shut down principles and of course, lots of Airplane mode.
Who Should Read Digital Minimalism?
Any business owner who feels overwhelmed with the endless demands of technology, email and social media —and who is ready to make some real changes.
The 5AM Club, Robin Sharma
I read this book on my yearly Europe trip and it was the perfect dose of storytelling, personal development and the pursuit of mastery. I consider Robin Sharma a personal mentor, even though we haven’t worked together yet. I’m drawn to himbecause of his message and commitment to authentic leadership.
The 5AM Club is something I’ve been living for years —I personally call it Beating Sunrise: waking up early, taking command of your day and ensuring you create the emotional states most people are waiting for.
This book is jam packed with incredible quotes and really drives the waking up early point home —time and time again. One key thing to mention is the reviews on this book were completely mixed: some loved it, like me —and others couldn’t stand the storytelling.
I personally found the storytelling fun, light-hearted and refreshing after reading (and writing) so many to-the-point personal development books over the years. I commend Robin for thinking outside of the box and always pushing his boundaries of creativity and growth.
Specifically, I love his principles of intense periods of focus and structure combined with play, fun and adventure. This is similar to a protocol I share in my coaching with the underlying theme that freedom is found in structure, routines and discipline.
Who Should Read The 5AM Club?
If you want a powerful reason to wake up before sunrise and set the tone for your day told through a fun narrative —you’ll love The 5AM Club.
Free To Focus, Michael Hyatt
As you can tell, I read and discuss a ton of books on focus and productivity —because I truly believe we must keep the importance of focus top of mind. Like any skill, the more I read about why it matters so much, the more likely I am to follow through and be reminded on my day to day.
Reading Michael Hyatt’s latest work was eerie —I’d just released my 7-12 Formula Course around focus and lots of his principles were exactly the same as mine. However, I did find some new tactics and perspectives I hadn’t discovered yet in Free To Focus.
Hyatt’s no-fluff, easygoing writing style made this book a breeze to read in two days —with a repeat the week after. The core theme of the book is one I’m constantly discussing: real productivity is not about doing more, to do more. It’s about doing less, to create more results, freedom and exponential results in life and business.
I loved how he starts the process with Stopping. Meaning, it can become impossible to focus when we’re running 100 MPH with no direction. It reminds me of slowing down, to later speed up. Once you stop and reflect, then you’re going to find the hidden needle movers in your life and business that really move the needle.
Who Should Read Free to Focus?
If you’re tired of the old model of productivity and spending most of your time on tasks that may or may not grow your business —dive in.
Flip the Script, Oren Klaff
I’ve read countless books on sales, negotiations, influence and persuasion. It’s been a while since a book stood out as a refreshing take, and that’s exactly what happened with Oren Klaff’s Flip the Script. Klaff took the world by storm with his previous book, Pitch Anything, and this one is a must have for 2019.
I read the first sentence and I was hooked.
Why? Because the landscape has changed, and pressure selling doesn’t work anymore. The days of false scarcity and leverage are gone, because now consumers have all of the leverage they need through Google, reviews and countless courses.
The truth is: none of us have a problem with sales, when it’s something we desire and in alignment with our values, goals and mission. Klaff’s prescription is a way to ensure you’re seen, heard and connected with the people who are the right fit: for me, this means my dream clients.
Who Should Read Flip the Script?
If you’re selling a brand, product or service and tired of the old ways of negotiation and want to find your dream clients the right way.
Ultralearning, Scott Young
The last book on the Top Books of 2019 for entrepreneurs is Ultralearning by Scott Young. I came across Scott’s work after reading Atomic Habits by James Clear in 2018, one of the best books on habit formation and why 90% of goal setting processes don’t work.
What I’ve noticed in the space of entrepreneurship is a focus on purpose and passion, but not on skill acquisition. If you follow me on the podcast or on social media, you’ve also seen me transition from speaking about those, and instead, addressing your ability to acquire valuable skills.
Enter Ultralarning. The reason I loved this book is because a lot of us think we know how to learn. But school didn’t teach us how to learn efficiently and to hard-wire skills for life. Often, it taught us to dump our brains with a ton of information and then repeat them on tests.
Scott was also on the podcast, which I’ll link to once the episode is live.
Who Should Ultralearning?
If you’re wanting to be more efficient with your ability to acquire key skills for your career or as an entrepreneur —this will help get you there faster.
Top Books In 2019 Links
Here are the links for you to grab these books:
Digital Minimilism, Cal Newport
The 5AM Club, Robin Sharma
Free to Focus, Michael Hyatt
Flip the Script, Oren Klaff
Ultralearning, Scott Young
The Leap of Your Life, Tommy Baker
Final Words and I’d Love To Hear Yours!
Well, there you have it.
As I said earlier in the post and often on the podcast —reading can create massive transformation in your life. Whether you’re consuming written texts or audiobooks, there is nothing better to tap into perspective, growth and wisdom.
What has been your top books for entrepreneurs in 2019? I’d love to hear about it in the comments.