10 books that changed my life


Those who know me, know that I love to read and that the gift that is always on my wish list is a good book. Today I bring you a list of the most amazing books I’ve ever read (nonfiction) and what I have learned from them. At the end of the list I will share with you a fantastic tip that has completely changed my reading speed and how I retain the content.

Sapiens – A Brief History of Humankind, by Yuval Noah Harari

This book is absolutely fascinating and I have always hated History!

I got a much better understanding about the evolution of humankind, about our current state, about how the world once was and about why it evolved like this. For me it was a revelation and proof that what we were taught at school has MANY inaccuracies, which make us, Homo Sapiens, think of ourselves as more special than what we really are. 

The Power of Habit, by Charles Duhigg

This is a very interesting book, which leads us through various scientific studies to understand the power that habits have over us, their usefulness, how they are constructed and changed and how community support plays an important role in this.

I’ve read it twice, once years ago and again during this quarantine, and it deserved every minute of my time. Realizing that we have the ability to control our habits and shape them according to our needs is fundamental for us to evolve.

Grit – The Power of Passion and Perseverance, by Angela Duckworth

This book, like the previous one, leads us through various scientific studies to prove that Grit is the true secret for success. Duckworth explains what it’s like to have Grit, how it develops, how family and community can play a key role in raising people with grit, and how we can measure and increase our own grit.

Another book I took the opportunity to reread during quarantine, since the ability to stay passionate about what I do and to persevere in the face of difficulties is something I try to cultivate constantly. Sometimes it is good to remind myself what drives me to do it.

The Art of Work: A Proven Path to Discovering What You Were Meant to Do, by Jeff Goins

In this book, Jeff Goins shares several experiences that will help you discover your purpose in life. From honoring your experiences, to realizing that you don’t have to jump into the unknown and to recognizing moments of change.

I read this book many years ago, when I was looking for my purpose in life. Today, I am of the opinion that the purpose of life is not found, but rather it is built, as I said in a Synergy Level Up video, but still, I recommend this book for the importance it had for me at that time and for the validity of the experiences that it tells us.

Life’s Golden Ticket, by Brendon Burchard

Brendon Burchard is a coach I admire very much! I’ve attended several of his training sessions and I’ve had the privilege of being coached by an amazing coach of his High Performance Coaching program.

In this book, Burchard tells us a fictional story to take us on a journey of personal transformation, to lead us to leave the past and to see the good things we have right in front of us, to teach us to face fears and challenges and to come out on the other side as a much better version of ourselves.

It’s such a transformative book that I’ve already offered it to one of my students, who, even though she didn’t like to read it, told me that she got hooked to the book.

From Clone to Clown – The art of having (and selling) creative ideas, by Vitor Briga

Vitor Briga makes use of his training as a clown to teach us creativity, with short and very interesting themes.

Rich Dad, Poor Dad, by Robert T. Kiyosaki

Undoubtedly a book worth reading! Kiyosaki learned the importance of having a financial education with his wealthy father (friend of his father) and the danger of not having it and of holding on to the false security of a job with his poor father (his actual father). In this book, he shows us what he has learned and teaches us how to get out of the rat race, in which the more we work and the more we earn the more we spend, which forces us to work even harder and so on, like a hamster always running in the same place.

From this book I highlight the importance of learning, as soon as possible, how to become an entrepeneur, how to make money and how to achieve passive income.

Girlboss, by Sophia Amoruso

The book that gave rise to the Netflix series (which I love too! I’ve seen it three times). Still, the tv show does not replace the book, because it romanticizes the reality of Sophia, passing a slightly wrong idea of how she reached her success. In this book, we understand that we do not have to conform to what society tells us is the way forward. We don’t have to work on things we don’t like just to pay the bills. At least we don’t have to do it forever, if we know how to look at what interests us with new eyes, if we know what we dislike in what already exists and if we know how to create our own version, if we know how to work with passion and diligence and persevere. 

Angela Duckworth’s Grit, teaches us this through science and Girlboss shows us this through her experience.

I Could Do Anything If I Only Knew What It Was, by Barbara Sher

Barbara Sher, in my opinion, goes far beyond coaching with this book, getting closer to therapy with the strategies she suggests. Still, it is a valuable book, in which it addresses several causes for not knowing what we want to do and suggests strategies to overcome them. If you still don’t know what you’re interested in doing, what you love, I find it impossible not to relate to at least one of the chapters. This was one of those books I read many years ago, when I was in search of my purpose in life and my challenge was precisely the fact that I could relate to more than one chapter, chapters that seemed contradictory as: “I am interested in everything” and “Nothing interests me”, and yet it was very useful, because as a good coach Sher urges us to act, to experiment, to risk. It worked for me.

It’s Not How Good You Are, It’s How Good You Want to Be, by Paul Arden

This is a very short and graphic book, with a message that goes straight to the point. The title is self-explanatory. I highly recommend it!

And now the promised tips!

My reading rate is SUUUUPER slow! One way I found to be able to read a book a lot faster was to choose audiobooks. I use Audible, from Amazon: you pay a monthly fee of about 13 € and you are entitled to download 1 book per month, which is a very reasonable price, because many of the books I read cost close to 20 €, so they become cheaper too. 

These books are in English, which can be a problem if you’re not comfortable, but I believe there are audiobooks in Portuguese available on other platforms.

For me, the only downside is that I cannot underline the most important parts. To work around this, in the most striking books (many on this list), I chose to buy the paper version and the audiobook and read and listen simultaneously. It’s a very interesting experience and increases the content retention rate, as we retain only 10% of what we read and 50% of what we see and hear.

What book has changed your life and why? Tell me in the comments.

Categories: Livros

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