Reading is one of my favorite things to do. Learning, growing, and being open to new ideas are important to any profession, but especially in real estate. And while an epic novel is always a welcomed escape, the books most often on my nightstand are about:

  • Personal Growth and Development
  • History and Cultures
  • Business, Technology, and Trends

These are four of my favorite books, ones that have shaped my thinking in some way.

four books

To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee

Before this book, I was on an exclusive diet of Babysitters Club and Sweet Valley High. Reading To Kill a Mockingbird was like dining at a 5 star Michelin restaurant after having only chicken fingers and canned corn. My imagination had never been challenged in that way. No clear resolution, what? Characters with flaws and inconsistencies?!!? It was a completely new reading experience for me.
Fun fact: My daughter, Josie Scout, is named after the narrator.

The Growth Mindset, by Carol Dweck

I love the Henry Ford quote: Whether you think you can or you think you can’t–you’re right. This book is the academic work that supports that truism. While reading it, I took the opportunity to examine my underlying beliefs about my own abilities and my internal programming. And little tweaks over time have had some very powerful, positive effects on me. What used to be: “I hate technology” is now “I can learn to use these tools.”

Genghis Khan and The Making of the Modern World, by Jack Weatherford

Tell me how an illiterate slave near starvation for the duration of his formative years ultimately unites a people, establishes a new system of warfare, creates a near global (at the time) economy, writes a constitution, abolishes torture, and enshrines religious freedom in the expanse of what is equal to the lands between Canada and Brazil? Talk about a growth mindset and a major perspective shift. The author of the book is another point of fascination for me. The epilogue tells his personal research journey through the Mongolian wilderness (a real Indiana Jones). Noticing a theme, yet? I love seeing things from different angles and this book tells the story of the Mongolian empire from a completely different perspective than I had ever heard it before.

Where the Wind Leads, by Vinh Chung

I have no idea how I stumbled across this book. Six years ago I read it and still think about this family’s journey often. I look at my kids and wonder if I would have the strength to carry them out of a war-torn country. What would we take with us? How would I feed them? What would I say to them? How could I keep them moving? Keep myself moving? Could I physically protect them? I am awed by the parents in this book. Not just by how they were able to get their kids out of Vietnam, but of how they raised their children here in the United States. An unbelievable but true story and it’s not a one off story. Check out this photo of people fleeing Vietnam. Every person on the boat has a story. Where the Wind Leads tells just one story of one family. There were so many more.

What books have been the most important in your life? The ones that have really shifted your thinking or introduced you to characters you still think about? I’d love to hear about them. Hit me up for coffee or book talk anytime.