Well, this year I got off to a slow start when it comes to reading- mostly because I spent most of January writing, but that’s for a different post, and a different time.
I started Decision Points, by George W. Bush at the end of January, and it took me almost three weeks to finish (give me a break, it’s nearly 500 pages). Every time Filipe saw me reading it he would ask, “How is George doing?”. To sum it up in one word, I would say the book was fascinating. First off, I can’t imagine being in that position having that kind of responsibility, access to information, and pressure from the rest of the world. I liked the perspective he wrote from as he gave the reader an idea of what it was like to be faced with the decisions he faced- from 9/11 to Katrina. He was sincere and honest acknowledging his own errors at times.
What impressed me most was his relationships with leaders abroad and the way he conducted diplomacy with them. I do my best to keep up with the news, but often, most of what I hear about are the big headlines; the talking points of the day. But often, it’s the news that goes unnoticed that is the most crucial. Not as dramatic for TV might I add, but important to say the least. President Bush’s ability to fight for freedom abroad and reach peace agreements with so many countries was astonishing to me- some countries that I never knew had problems. Although not everything he was working toward was solidified (or signed!) by the time he left office, I was impressed by his tenacity and determination to see freedom granted to people of any country. This is a great read with some great leadership insights in it, I highly recommend it for anyone facing any kind of difficult decision.
On Friday I picked up The Noticer, by Andy Andrews, and finished it Sunday night. It was a great, easy read, but filled with a TON of wisdom. It’s one of those books that you makes you want to keep it on your nightstand because just looking at it will remind you of the simple, yet profound truths within its pages.
The book is about a man named Jones (not Mr., just Jones) who comes in and out of people’s lives offering them a new perspective for whatever difficulty they are going through. Whether the someone was gripped by poverty, headed for divorce, or feels like life isn’t worth living, he has a way of helping them see life a little differently and in the midst of it, alters the course of their life. There are so many great quotes from the book that I want to write down and take with me everywhere because, like the characters in the book, it has the power to alter all of our destinies.
Here is just one: “Remember, whatever you focus upon, increases…When you focus on the things you need, you’ll find those needs increasing. If you concentrate your thoughts on what you don’t have, you will soon be concentrating on other things that you had forgotten you don’t have-and feel worse! If you set your mind on loss, you are more likely to lose…But a grateful perspective brings happiness and abundance into a person’s life.”
So, that’s what I’ve been reading lately. How about you?