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Reading Roundup // June 2016

June 28, 2016
AUTHOR: Emilie
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I cannot believe it’s time to talk about what I read in June! Time really does fly! Just the other day, I shared what a poopy job I did reading for April and May, where I read only two books over two months. And they really weren’t spectacular books at all.

This month of June alone, though, I’ve finished three books! That brings me to 15 books for 2016. Considering my goal was 20, it feels really nice to be three-quarters of the way there at the six-month mark.

Your Money or Your Life: 9 Steps to Transforming Your Relationship with Money and Achieving Financial Independence

With the 9-step plan described in the book, the authors promise “Financial Independence,” which they define as the enough interest generating off investments to live off. Basically, you get out of debt, minimize expenses, live frugally, and invest in bonds. A whole lot easier said than done. At least the Dave Ramsey plan (the baby steps) make sense. This just seems like a lot of cockamaney BS. The first half of the book- getting out of debt, cutting expenses, and building wealth- make sense. The rest, is just a little too much for me. Lots of people find this to be the plan for them. There’s nothing wrong with that at all; it’s just not for me.

Even though, this plan does not align with my goals, I think there were some great points in it. For example, looking at time spent at work as moments of your life that are traded away is a great perspective for thinking about what it is worth working for. We all have a limited amount of life energy. How do you want to spend it? My friend Ellen is waiting for this one because she and I have discussed this a couple of times.

The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business

Must. Read. Stop what you’re doing and go buy this book right now. Seriously, go read it right now. This book changed my life in how eye-opening it was for me. I used to be a compulsive nail-biter. Basically as early as I can remember I was biting my nails and my mom was trying to get me to stop. Then in 2013 I had surgery and overnight I stopped biting my nails. I never understood how, but just like that it was over.

Living in a new place, it’s been really hard for me to get into a new workout habit. In Baltimore, I moved in and got into a workout routine right away, but here getting anything has been like pulling teeth. TPH opened my eyes- and while it’s still up to me to make the decisions that lead to a change in my routine, I feel empowered having learned more about the science behind habits. I’m mailing this one to my friend Rana! I know she’s going to love it!

My favorite quote: “Not sharing an opportunity to learn is a cardinal sin.”

The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers

I’ve been talking about this book since I started reading it. Holy cow is this one amazing. I got it as part of my birthday present and it is amazing. Frankly, I think this should be must-reading for every VFA fellow and anyone interested in startups and entrepreneurship. I would put this one right up there with Zero to One by Peter Thiel which I reviewed here.

As someone who works at a startup, I found it to be really enlightening. Obviously I’m not in the position to hire or fire an executive (the main focus of a chapter of the book), but it was extremely insightful for what that might look or feel like. There’s a section on job titles, which is something I’ve really been struggling with lately, and reading it helped me understand my own feelings! If you’re into startups/business/tech/entrepreneurship/VC-funding, pick this one up because you’ll breeze right through it. It’s even hard to put it down.

This was a great month of books! I’m currently reading I Know How She Does It: How Successful Women Make the Most of Their Time, Code: The Hidden Language of Computer Hardware and Software, and Band of Brothers. The first came as a recommendation from my Kappa mentor in college. I look forward to letting you know my thoughts!

 

Have you read anything good lately?

 

 

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Emilie is a data engineer by day and lifestyle blogger by night. A Jersey girl at heart, she is currently living in her fifth home in three years, Savannah, GA with her college sweetheart. She’s learned the hard way that home is wherever the Army sends them. She enjoys eating food, cuddling with her dog, and binge watching HGTV.