The Best Books I Read In 2014


I LOVE buying new books. The type that you can hold in your hands feeling the weight or the smooth cover.

My library is growing rapidly. One day I’ll have a room dedicated just for books with green reading lamps and dark wooden desks just like the British Library.

If you’re looking for new reads in 2015 check out this list.

1. The Big Leap Gay Hendricks

I got so much from this book so it was easy to make it my number one!

Key learnings:

Zone of Excellence versus Zone of Genius

If you want to change your career but you’re good at your job you’re probably working in your Zone of Excellence. It’s the zone where your boss or employer want you to stay because you’re good at it/highly experienced but it doesn’t float your boat. For example: dong this sort of work doesn’t feel like your higher calling or living your purpose. When you work in you Zone of Genius everything flows and you feel as if you are living your purpose. Things just fit.

Einstein Time

This was a revelation and I’m still learning how to implement it.  Einstein time is about you taking responsibility for time, for owning it. According to Hendricks,  instead of propagating negative statements such as “there is never enough time” or “I’ve run out of time” you say time positive statements such as “I own time” and “I create time.”

Upper Limit

Humans are addicted to fear and worry. We can stop ourselves from experiencing joy and success in life because we run into upper limits. An upper limit is something that you allow to stop you moving to the next level of success. The risk averse part of your brain doesn’t want you to grow and change so you create upper limiting behaviours to keep you where you are.

2. Gone Girl Gillian Flynn

This was the first book by Flynn book I’ve read. The cover caught my eye at Readings bookshop and I was hooked! I finished the book in a few days. Gone Girl is brilliantly written and completely unpredictable. Even if you’ve seen the movie make sure you pick up the book!

3. A Fortunate Life A.B Facey

If you think you’re got a hard life read this book and gain a new perspective. Facey was born in 1894. He grew up in a world of poverty and was sent work on a farm when he was only six years old instead of being sent to school. I enjoyed the historical element of A Fortunate Life and it made me feel lucky to have been given a loving childhood.

4. Life In Half A Second Matthew Michalewicz

Matthew Michalewicz has calculated how long we have left and by his approximations it’s not long, hence the title of his book. I was fortunate to receive a free copy at Pro Blogger last year where Michael was a keynote speaker. I really enjoyed this book for a number of reasons. Michael doesn’t just make assertions he backs them up with quotes and studies to show you what works from a scientific perspective. However it’s still easy to read. Life In Half a Second a logical book that goes further than the usual goal setting advice.

5. Turning Pro Steven Pressfield

Are you being a slacker? Read this and get motivation to get off the couch and start being serious about what you want in life. It’s a good kick up the butt if you’ve been procrastinating forever and can’t seem to get going. Steven Pressfield shares his own story of moving from a mediocre job to a more fulfilling one and the book is broken down into bite sized chunks so it’s fast to get through.

Books I started to read but didn’t finish

Lean In: Sheryl Sandberg

I bought this book at the airport in New Delhi with full on good intentions last January but I haven’t read much more than the introduction.

Blue Ocean Strategy: Kim W. Chan

When I first saw this book come out a few years ago when Borders was still alive I thought: ‘what a stupid title’ However, Blue Ocean Strategy provides some useful analogies for business and how you can make competition irrelevant by having your own ‘blue ocean.’ Easy to understand case studies are used including Holden and Cirque de Soleil. Unfortunately, after the first chapter I got a bit bored.

The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People: Stephen B. Covey

One of my sisters loves this book. However, as soon as I saw the word quadrant I felt a little frightened inside. What does quadrant really mean anyway? It’s still on my bookshelf and perhaps I can read it in bite sized chunks in 2015?

The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari Robin Sharma

Another book that was highly recommended by a friend that I just didn’t get into after the first few chapters. I was filled with good intentions last January but unfortunately it’s still sitting on the bottom of my bedside table book pile.

Born to Run: Christopher McDougall

Another airport purchase. This time at the Kuala Lumpur. Make sure you check out their great business bookshop if you go there. I’m going to definitely finish Born to Run in 2015. Unfortunately, it fell victim to me having too many other books to read.

Tribes: Seth Godin

I flicked through it. I am sure it’s great but like Born to Run it fell victim being in competition to new shiny objects i.e. other books. I WILL read it in 2015 as it’s been recommended.

Midnights Children: Salman Rushdie

Initially I was attracted to Salman Rushdie’s name. It sounded so exotic. ‘What does he write about I wondered?’ I was gifted Midnight’s Children by a friend. I started reading the Booker Prize novel in 2013. I tried again determinedly in 2014 but am only half way there. Salman’s writing is convoluted and I just want him to get on with the story.

What were your favourite books in 2014?

Photo credit: deposit photos


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