Note and Warning: Friends and family, in 2017 I will be doing a lot of new things that are way outside my comfort zone and character.
As Whitman said in Song of Myself:
"Do I contradict myself?
Very well then, I contradict myself.
(I am large. I contain multitudes.)"
Do not be alarmed. You may have to suspend your notion of who I am for a little while. This is all part of the plan.
Remember, you will find yourself in the same place next year, or five years from now, except for the people that you meet, and the books you read. Whatever it is that you are putting off, do it. Whatever it is that scares you, walk toward it. Enrich your life. Seek inspiration and fuel from outside sources. More than ever, I realize we can't do it alone.
Perhaps this can help you along in 2017.
TOP 5 Books I read in 2016:
Daring Greatly by Brene Brown:
This is a book on vulnerability, a scary topic for all of us. In a world where we only put our best face forward, and show others only the ideal version of ourselves, this book talks about courage and how to bring others closer by showing them our true selves. I found this super powerful, and it made me realize how far I had to go, and gave me the courage to step outside my comfort zone.
Note: For those of you who enjoy listening instead of reading, here is her Ted Talk.
How To Be An Adult In Relationships: Five Keys to Mindful Loving by David Richo:
This was profound for me. This was a year where I broke things off with someone I loved, but never could let go, found romance in a longtime friendship, opened up my heart like never before, got it broken, picked up the pieces and came out stronger and happier than ever, with the realization that I have so much to offer, and for the first time in my life, I know how. I feel like this could help so many people stay together and find lasting happiness. I wish I had read it sooner.
The 4 Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss:
This is my most recommended book every year, and it counts again because I re-read it! If you are at all interested in business and efficiency, and have any inclination of starting your own business, or just want to understand how the modern business world works, please do yourself a favor and read this. It is perhaps my #1 most important book of all time.
Bonus: Tim's Podcast is great and turns me onto so many other avenues of interest. Fascinating. Check it out here. My favorites were Mat Mullenweg, Shay Carl, Tony Robbins... subscribe and enjoy!
The Power of Less by Leo Babauta:
This is a short little Ebook that transformed my productivity level. I am currently using a version of Leo's system of 3 MIT's (most important tasks) daily, and limiting myself to 3 Projects max, focusing my efforts for maximum results, and find I am hugely more productive, at the same time freeing up a lot of time and energy.
Emergency by Neil Strauss:
This is a book about prepping for economic collapse or natural disasters, and basically becoming a badass. It's a pretty entertaining read, and gave me a lot of ideas for what I want to do this coming year.
I'll also throw in honorable mention to my re-read of the classic Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey. If there's one personal finance book to read, it's this one. Get it.
There is a holistic view of all this seeming madness. I am most of all dedicated to efficiency, and feel like our modern world is full of waste and distraction. Most of us, myself included until recently, have been chasing outdated plans that are given to us as a birthright, but are relics of a past that is no longer relevant.
We have to make our own way, now, and this is brilliant and empowering. As a minimalist, I am seeking to eliminate from my life everything that is without meaning and utility, from possessions, to projects, to people, and using the power of focus on what's truly important to create the life I want.
So, onward to 2017, the year where I move beyond self discovery, and graduate to self creation. This is going to be the greatest year.