My life has been shaped by the hundreds of books I’ve read, and I got something of value out of almost all of them. But of course, there are some that were so great I think about them regularly even years later. Here are my all time favorite books:
The Snowball – I first read this biography of Warren Buffett when I was in high school, and I won’t hesitate to say it was one of the most important things I did in my entire high school experience. Buffett’s life became a model that I tried to emulate in many ways, and a lot of the success I’ve had in business, investing, and staying happy in my work is because of the mindsets I learned from his story. It also offers a timeless lesson in humility, with the prologue describing how Buffett asked the author to tell the “less flattering version” of his life story. That will forever stick with me.
Poor Charlie’s Almanac – I didn’t pick up Buffett’s business partner’s book for way too many years, but when I finally did it had a big impact on my drive to read broadly and learn about things beyond business. After I finished it I read the entire series of books it recommends in the back, which range in topics from history to science to finance.
You Call The Shots – Another book that I read in high school, I credit this one with giving my the courage and confidence to start my businesses so young.
The 4-Hour Workweek – This book provided many of the tactical frameworks that helped me develop my companies and automate their work. While I don’t agree with or live out all Ferriss’s advice, the idea of automating is still very ingrained in me.
Educated – If you need an extreme lesson in why being intellectually humble and open minded is so important, Educated is the story for you. It’s gripping, horrifying, and enlightening all at once.
Wooden – My dad gave me a copy of this that is actually signed by the legendary coach himself. Aside from the sentimental value, this book contains the core of Coach Wooden’s wisdom about how to define success.
The Millionaire Next Door – This book helped me build my core frugal habits that contributed to my being able to build wealth. Rich people drive Hondas, not Ferraris.
Mindset – You can have a growth mindset or a fixed mindset in any part of life, and this book shows why you need the former.
Jim Collins Series – These books shaped many of my earliest beliefs about how to run businesses well and are undeniably full of great thinking. They can’t be treated as a perscription to follow, but more as a starting point for building company values and practices.
Total Recall – Arnold may be one of the most impressive people of all time. He succeeded at the highest levels in bodybuilding, business, acting, and politics. His story is fascinating and inspiring.
Ryan Holiday Stoicism Trilogy