30 day reading challenge

I Did a 30 Day Reading Challenge and It Changed Everything

18 February 2021 | by Gina Lucia

I did a 30 day reading challenge and it changed everything for me. Here’s why…

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For the past year, I’ve exclusively read fiction books. There’s only one reason why: I overconsumed business content to the point of burnout. 

Burnout which made me actively avoid listening to other people’s business advice for fear of repeating the same mistake.

Which makes this challenge look a bit silly. If I burnt out previously from consuming too much, then it’s probably going to happen again.

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.

Possibly not actually said by Albert Einstein

I used the word ‘content’ for a reason though. 

I wasn’t just reading business books. Joined a membership program, listened to podcasts and set absolutely no rules and boundaries to keep me sane during the process.

Because I was consuming so much in a short period of time, I also didn’t retain the information I was consuming. In fact, I consumed so much, I don’t remember any of it.

I’d hoped to rectify all of these problems within this challenge.

Find out how it went by watching the video at the top of this post.

My 30 day reading challenge book reviews

Brave Not Perfect by Reshma Saujani

Brave Not Perfect by Reshma Saujani

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • As women, we’re conditioned to be perfect.
  • So for that reason, we have work to do.
  • Being brave instead of perfect is the solution and this book tells you exactly how.

My impressions:

This book will make you realise that your life so far has conditioned you to seek perfection. As a woman, the choices you make, the way you handle fear and failure is likely a result of your upbringing. Reshma exposes all of this and arms you with the tools and knowledge to set it right. The book is a deep-dive into your inner workings which will help you see how to face your fears, be brave and finally, start pushing towards your goals. 

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

This book is for any woman who is struggling with fear, perfectionism, people-pleasing and more. It’s inclusive, empowering and impactful. If a man were to read it, they’d get some pretty useful insight too.

What I personally got from the book:

I’m definitely still a perfectionist in more ways than one, but I’m now armed with some very specific techniques to help me combat it. You’ll have to read the book to find out what those are 😉

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/braveuk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/braveus

Ego is The Enemy by Ryan Holiday

Ego is The Enemy by Ryan Holiday

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Your ego may well get you ahead but at the cost of your priorities
  • Ego has throughout history, been the downfall of men
  • Your ego will force you to make difficult decisions

My impressions:

It’s hard to focus on this book’s message when almost every chapter starts by telling the story of one historical white man after another. Not only is it hard to relate to, but it’s also quite frankly frustrating. The book contains plenty of good advice, but the time spent delivering it pales in comparison to the time spent talking about these men of history. Most of which have absolutely no relation to modern-day. 

Because of this persistent reference to history, it also assumes a lot. Without being able to talk to the people these stories are about, you can’t assume their intentions, their desires or drive. So it’s full of contradictions and guesswork.

Perhaps the most disappointing part is that the author himself doesn’t tell the reader how he’s applying this wisdom to his life. If he had, his message may well have sunk in. Without it, it’s just stories.

Oh, and anyone who puts a holocaust survivor in the same paragraph as Walt Disney has something to answer for. Ryan Holiday is very much out of touch.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

If you like American history, stories of war and the NFL, you might find this book relatable and therefore you’ll absorb its wisdom. If not, it’s probably not for you.

What I personally got from the book:

Despite my frustrations with this book. I did get a few nuggets of wisdom.

  1. You should never stop being a student, especially if you think you know it all.
  2. If you don’t know how much you need, the default easily becomes more.
  3. Strive to trade short-term gratification for a longer-term payoff.
  4. The person who clears the path ultimately controls its direction.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/egouk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/egous

The Art of War by Sun Tzu

The Art of War by Sun Tzu

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Winning without fighting is possible and preferable.
  • Be prepared or prepare to fail.
  • Don’t fight on ego or emotion, instead use calm strategy.

My impressions:

Reading The Art of War is like reading anything by Shakespeare. If you’ve never been taught how to read Shakespeare, then you don’t know how to read Shakespeare. The Art of War is no different. 

The good news is, The Art of War is short, so take can be used to read and re-read passages to learn how to apply its teachings to your business or life.

However, as a pacifist, the idea of using war tactics in business, made my stomach churn and opened my eyes to the many ways The Art of War has influenced modern-day politics. 

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

The Art of War would likely bring great benefit to a business person who has a team under them, or someone who is looking to work on their leadership skills. 

What I personally got from the book:

Not a lot. I’m not sure how this book applies itself to a modern-day business owner who seeks to create a business built on community and cooperation. However, it would prove useful if I were to expand my team.

Sure there are lessons hidden within its pages, but these lessons would be better served in a modern-day setting. For me anyway.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/waruk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/warus

So Good They Can't Ignore You by Cal Newport

So Good They Can’t Ignore You by Cal Newport

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • How ‘follow your passion’ is not only misleading, it’s also dangerous.
  • How honing your craft is more effective than chasing your passion’.
  • If you want something rare and valuable, you must offer something rare and valuable in return.

My impressions:

So Good They Can’t Ignore you is a massive reality check for the current state of the online side-hustle, passive income message.

It states in a very matter of fact way, that by ‘following your passion’, not only are you treading dangerous waters, but you’re following advice which is incorrect.

One of my favourite lines from the book is this:

Passion focuses too much on what the world can give you, rather than what you can give to the world.

The book explores, in stages, how you can do the work you love, in a realistic way.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

Anyone who is considering or has started an online business needs to read this book. It’s a reality check, but it contains a lot of incredibly useful strategy that you can apply straight away.

What I personally got from the book:

Honing your craft is one of the most important and rewarding things you can do. Something I’m going to tackle head-on with more enthusiasm thanks to this book.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/so-good-uk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/so-good-us

Anything You Want by Derek Sivers

Anything You Want by Derek Sivers

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Lessons from a successful businessman who did things his own way.
  • Put your customers before yourself.
  • 10 years of experience in 1 hour.

My impressions:

This book holds very clear and actionable insight into the business journey of Derek Sivers. It’s a short read but is packed full of valuable advice coupled with genuine life stories to back that advice up.

Derek’s main focus is for you to create a business that suits you and above all else, benefits your customers and puts them first.

Success is in this achievement, not the money you make or the status you gain.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

Anyone running or starting a business. It’s not long so can be read in a day even without a challenge and holds some valuable lessons anyone can take away.

What I personally got from the book:

There are a few key lessons I’m taking away from this book.

  1. Success comes from persistently improving and inventing, not from persistently promoting what’s not working.
  2. It’s okay to have no vision, mission or master plan. You can still build a business without one.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/anythinguk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/anythingus

Freedom Seeker by Beth Kempton

Freedom Seeker by Beth Kempton

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Do what you love and you’ll be happy
  • Follow the 8 freedom keys to achieve this
  • Take chances and follow your passion

My impressions:

I’m not convinced by Freedom Seeker, as a book it falls flat in a few key areas.

  1. It tries to tackle a very vague topic like freedom in so many different ways that it feels rushed, unorganised and lacking in substance.
  2. The author frequently makes up words or phrases like ‘freedom keys’, ‘freedom seekers’ and ‘kindrovert’. By doing this, she removes you from the message or the lesson and makes it less convincing.
  3. It reads as quite self-indulgent I’m sorry to say. She tells a lot of her own stories which take up perhaps 70-80% of the book. Leaving very little room for practice advice and actually just work to add more pages to the book.

I’m sad to say that Freedom Seeker was a disappointment. It’s filled with surface-level advice which fails to go deep into important topics and instead leaves you feeling no better off having read it.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

I wouldn’t recommend this book to you unless you’re particularly interested in reading a few motivational stories and you’re not interested in the reality of those stories.

What I personally got from the book:

I got one piece of practical advice from the book which I will put into practice and that’s to create a ‘flight fund’. This fund, or pot of money, is something you add to over time and set aside on the off chance that one day, you might want to change tact completely and turn your life into something different. That fund would allow you to do it.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/freedomuk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/freedomus

Indistractable by Nir Eyal

Indistractable by Nir Eyal

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Technology is not the root cause of distractions, the problem goes much deeper.
  • The science behind why we get distracted.
  • How to overcome and ‘hack’ your way to focus.

My impressions:

I love a book with plenty of studies and science to back up its claims and this book has it in abundance. Don’t be fooled though, it’s also very enjoyable and easy to read.

Indistractable takes you through the psychology of why we get distracted and then gives you the tools you need to overcome it. From your working life to your relationships and even your kids, everything is covered.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

Indistractable focuses most of its attention on the workplace so if you work with others, in an office or even at home, you’ll enjoy this. In general, though, anyone could read Indistractable and take some valuable insights away with them.

What I personally got from the book:

The psychological aspect of this book makes it worth reading alone, even if you don’t agree with the methods of regaining focus control.

Understanding why we are distracted is so valuable in order to recognise it when it happens. I’m now armed with that knowledge.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/indistractableuk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/indistractableus

The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell

The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Little things can make a big difference
  • How people play their role in epidemics, trends and business success
  • Analysis of how this has happened throughout history and in modern times

My impressions:

This is a brilliant book purely for its insight into the power of social proof, word of mouth and the roles very specific people play in spreading ideas, viruses and the promotion of products.

I had hoped by reading this book the author would give some insight into how to do this yourself, or start to put the techniques into motion but the book is a pure analysis leaving you with the knowledge of how it happened for others, but not how to do it for yourself. This is probably because the Tipping point happens mostly by chance through a series of small actions which you might not have control over.

Regardless, some of the points within the book (the things you do have control over) would have benefitted from a few instructions. 

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

If you’re interested in the topic, then give it a read. If you’re looking for practical advice, you won’t find it. 

What I personally got from the book:

I’m always fascinated by people so everything written in the book was incredibly interesting and enjoyable to read. I gained nothing in terms of business though.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/tippinguk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/tippingus

Grit by Angela Duckworth

Grit by Angela Duckworth

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Why being resilient can be life-changing.
  • What the true qualities are of a successful person.
  • How to implement more grit into your life and work to achieve more.

My impressions:

Angela has done a brilliant job of exploring and delving deep into the topic of grit. This book debunks the idea that the more intelligent or talented you are, the farther you’ll go. Instead, Angela proves that it’s not these that make for a successful person, rather the level of grit you have.

With countless stories, studies and conversations to pull upon, Angela makes for a very convincing and inspiring argument.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

This book is for anyone who is trying to ‘find their passion’, figure out what they want from life, or are seeking success. To be honest, at whatever stage in your journey, this book is a must-read.

What I personally got from the book:

Grit is something I’m just now starting to appreciate and foster. This book has solidified that for me.

It’s obvious after reading that in order to succeed, it takes determination, time and perseverance to get there.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/grituk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/grit-us

Hyperfocus by Chris Bailey

Hyperfocus by Chris Bailey

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Achieve more by strategically using hyperfocus.
  • How the mind gets distracted and how you can use this to your advantage.
  • How to implement this in your work and daily life.

My impressions:

Hyperfocus is a brilliant book if you struggle with focusing on tasks, organising your schedule and making room for creative thinking. It not only provides solutions for all these things but analyses the science behind how we get distracted, how our mind works and gives you plenty of actionable advice so you can start implementing its techniques.

If you already have a good grasp on all these things, Hyperfocus might seem a little repetitive to you.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

As I said, if you struggle with focus, this book is absolutely for you.

What I personally got from the book:

Over the past few years, I’ve already been implementing the techniques in this book (without having read the book) so not a lot within its pages was new. However, I did take note of some small tweaks I can make to my environment to allow for even greater focus.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/hyperfocusuk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/hyperfocusus

Do The Work by Steven Pressfield

Do The Work by Steven Pressfield

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Guidance and motivation to help you start and finish any project.
  • Resistance is the enemy and it comes in many forms.
  • You’re not alone in this.

My impressions:

Do The Work is a short and snappy motivational book which takes you through a matter-of-fact journey to starting and finishing any project.

Steven acts as your motivational guide and friend, explaining things as they are so you can get on with doing, rather than overthinking.

It’s a good book, but because it’s so short, it misses some of the details and oversimplifies some of the concepts within it. 

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

If you’re just starting a project, are encountering resistance or need a pep talk, this book is for you.

What I personally got from the book:

I’m not currently in a place of resistance so I got no immediate value from this book. However, I did get some excellent writing tips and a look into the potential resistance I will feel in the future. This book will be kept on hand for such occasions.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/dotheworkuk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/dotheworkus

Purple Cow by Seth Godin

Purple Cow by Seth Godin

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Make your business a success by being remarkable.
  • Boring and safe won’t get you results, being unique and remarkable will.
  • Innovate and you’ll get there faster.

My impressions:

Purple Cow might have the ugliest cover I’ve ever seen on a book but boy does it pack a punch. No matter if you create products or services, supply information in the form of content or anything else for that matter, this book is a must-read.

It doesn’t contain any actionable strategy, instead, it supplies you with the tools and information to innovate and re-think how you design the things you’re going to sell and even how your business runs.

A brilliant book that’s concise, to the point and quite exciting.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

As I said, anyone in business should read this book.

What I personally got from the book:

I got a lot from this one. From getting specific with my audience, to developing something remarkable and more. All of these I already knew, but Seth’s fresh and matter of fact perspective is invaluable.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/purplecowuk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/purplecowus

The Infinite Game by Simon Sinek

The Infinite Game by Simon Sinek

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • There’s no such thing as winning in life and business.
  • This is a finite mindset, instead pursue the infinite mindset.
  • One that’s focused on people, innovation and a cause that transcends the individual.

My impressions:

This book is brilliant. While it may be written to inspire business leaders and companies, it holds great value for individual business owners too.

Its sole premise is to encourage you to pursue a mindset that will fuel your business decisions, growth and progress by its nature. This mindset comes in the form of a Just Cause, a cause that goes beyond you or your products or services, one that seeks to make a difference long after you’re gone.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

Anyone running or thinking of starting a business. Employees will also get a lot of value from this book.

What I personally got from the book:

To have a cause to fuel a business has always seemed to me to be out of reach. But this book has demonstrated that it’s not only within reach, but absolutely necessary to create work that’s fulfilling above all else. 

As a result, I’ll be exploring this moving forward.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/infiniteuk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/infiniteus

Dare to Lead by Brené Brown

Dare to Lead by Brené Brown

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • How to lead through being brave, vulnerable and with courage.
  • How these three things are skills, not personality traits.
  • Implement this all into your working life.

My impressions:

Dare to Lead is an honest and dare I say vulnerable account of how we can use vulnerability in our working lives. It focuses mostly on leadership but its techniques can also be applied to relationships too.

I had hoped the book would give me some tips and insight on being a leader of a movement or an audience but it was mostly focused on practical workplace tips which is not the fault of the book.

As an introvert like Brené, many of the skills within this book like empathy come more naturally to me. However, implementing them, managing them and using them effectively do not. It’s worth reading for that alone.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

If you’re in a position of leadership, you work in a team or want to improve your relationships, this book is a must-read. Especially if you find the idea of being vulnerable scary, stupid or dangerous.

What I personally got from the book:

As I said, while some of the skills in this book come more naturally to me, understanding how best to implement and use them do not. So I’ll be taking all of that forward with me.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/daretoleaduk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/daretoleadus

Building a Story Brand by Donald Miller

Building a Story Brand by Donald Miller

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Use great storytelling to grow your business.
  • Using story is a must if you want to connect with your audience/customers.
  • How to do this by putting your customers first.

My impressions:

Building a Story Brand not only tells you why you should be using story to grow your brand but the all-important how.

Donald Miller does this in the most straightforward way possible with solid examples and simple steps that will help you craft your brand message.

Essentially, this book is a course in paper format and should be treated as such. You won’t read this once. You’ll read it again and again as you’re building your brand, products and growing your business.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

Anyone who is building a business or a brand and needs help with messaging and especially if you think you don’t need help with messaging (because you probably do).

What I personally got from the book:

A lot. As I said it’s a course in a book so I’ll be taking my time to re-read this a number of times and do the work to implement its advice. I recommend you do too!

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/storybranduk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/storybrandus

Instant Motivation by Chantal Burns

Instant Motivation by Chantal Burns

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • All feelings we have are the result of our thoughts in the moment.
  • These thoughts and feelings are all entirely internal and not caused by external factors.
  • To shift your feelings in the moment, you need to change your thoughts.

My impressions:

Instant Motivation is a book perfect for those who love understanding and re-training their own mind. It highlights the role of our thoughts and how they impact how we feel. Covering everything from anxiety, to fear, confidence, success and even pain.

It then uses certain principles to help you monitor and reframe your thoughts to adjust how you feel in any given moment.

It’s a heavier read, but worth every bit of time you spend reading it.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

If you struggle with anxiety, low self-esteem, focus, stress, motivation etc. This book is for you!

What I personally got from the book:

I absolutely love learning how the mind works so this was a joy to read and pretty exciting too. Understanding how we function and process thoughts means that we can ultimately adjust how we navigate life, there’s no better knowledge than that.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/instant

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/instantus

The Lemonade Life by Zack Friedman

The Lemonade Life by Zack Friedman

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Change your life by making five switches (perspective, risk, independence, self-awareness and motion)
  • Determine what kind of ‘Lemon Lifer’ you are (Eternal Excuser, Steady Settler, Change Chaser).
  • Shift to become a Daring Disruptor instead.

My impressions:

The Lemonade Life is filled with surface-level advice which very rarely gets backed up with evidence. It tries to go into so many different areas of life and business that it can barely go into detail on any of them. Leaving the reader feel like they missed something (this reader right here).

Zack is a big fan of alliteration which is obvious with all the names he gives to things he has made up. Its overuse makes these names distracting and so it’s hard to take in much of what he’s saying. 

Sadly The Lemonade Life is a book that has an identity crisis. It’s incredibly unclear who the book is for, especially when in one chapter the author talks about workplace habits and in another building a business. It doesn’t help that the name and subtitle of the book is ‘How to fuel success, create happiness, and conquer anything’. It’s far too vague.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

I sadly wouldn’t recommend this book.

What I personally got from the book:

This book taught me that there’s no real need to create made-up names for everything, it’s self-indulgent and distracting.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/lemonadeuk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/lemonadeus

Your Stand is Your Brand by Patrick Gentempo

Your Stand is Your Brand by Patrick Gentempo

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Your purpose and your values will help your business thrive.
  • How both of these should in some way align with your personal values in order to have harmony.
  • How to define both of these and follow a key strategy to not just have business success, but a more balanced life too.

My impressions:

Your Stand is Your Brand took me by surprise. I thought the book would brand-focused and although it is, it’s actually a more holistic look at business and life.

By combining the values of your brand with your personal values, Patrick clearly reminds us that if we don’t have these two in alignment, we’ll have some serious problems down the line.

Your Stand is Your Brand is business knowledge combined with minimalism and philosophy. A great combination.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

If you’re concerned about the direction your business is going, you feel pulled in too many directions, or you want to make sure your values are present in your business, this book is for you.

What I personally got from the book:

While working on my personal brand, the focus on simplifying and staying true to my values is so important. This was a timely reminder.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/standbranduk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/standbrandus

The Extra Hour by Will Declair, Bao Dinh and Jerome Dumont

The Extra Hour by Will Declair, Bao Dinh and Jerome Dumont

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Add an extra hour (or more) to your day with the strategies within this book.
  • As a result, your productivity will also increase.
  • All so you can either make more money or enjoy your free time.

My impressions:

The Extra Hour reads like a condensed 4-hour Work Week. Its premise is a little more realistic though, to get you one hour back a day.

The book does a good job of taking you through organising your to-do list, removing distractions and giving you some truly helpful and practical strategies to get it done.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

This book would be perfect for anyone who has lost control of their work schedule or simply wants to claw back their time.

What I personally got from the book:

Interestingly enough, I already do a huge chunk of the suggestions in this book. I’ve developed some very productive and organised habits over the years and they just so happen to be in here. It’s well worth a read if you want to know what they are.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/extrahouruk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/extrahourus

Atomic Habits by James Clear

Atomic Habits by James Clear

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Create and build good habits with these proven strategies.
  • Make life-changing habits by starting small.
  • Master delayed gratification and invest in your future-self with ease.

My impressions:

I’ve been meaning to read Atomic Habits for what feels like years. Ironically it took a habit-forming reading challenge to push me to actually read it.

Atomic Habits is an international bestseller for a reason. The techniques in this book are not only convincing, but they give you a feeling of control over habits you likely thought were impossible to break. 

Not only this, but Atomic Habits also addresses the importance of making sure the habits you create actually align with who you want to be and how the identity you adopt while doing them will help you succeed.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

Anyone who wants to break bad habits and cultivate good ones. Honestly, it’s the only book you need to read on this subject (as of the time of writing).

What I personally got from the book:

This book is going to be a permanent fixture on my bookshelf, ready to read whenever I want to start working on a new habit. In particular, I plan on learning German so I’ll be using a lot of the techniques in this book to help me do it.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/atomicuk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/atomicus

How to Be a Base by Lilly Singh

How to Be a Bawse by Lilly Singh

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • How to conquer life and business.
  • With life lessons from the YouTube star Lilly Singh.
  • Complete with the most beautiful photos I’ve ever seen.

My impressions:

How to Be a Bawse was a long shot for me. I’d added it to my list in the hopes that I’d get some valuable insight from a YouTuber’s perspective and because Lilly has a psychology degree, I thought it might combine both YouTube and psychology in one perfect mix.

It’s likely my fault for presuming because How to Be a Bawse is essentially a series of short chapters filled with life-lessons from Lilly over the years. There’s nothing wrong with this, and if you’re a fan you’d probably enjoy it, but I was hoping for something with more substance.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

If you’re a fan of Lilly’s then absolutely give it a read.

What I personally got from the book:

Not a lot. Hearing about her life and work was interesting but I didn’t take away anything of great value.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/bawseuk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/bawseus

Just F*cking Do It by Noor Hibbert

Just F*cking Do It by Noor Hibbert

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • The law of attraction meets psychology.
  • Transform your life by realising your potential.
  • Act on this potential by understanding and embracing who you are and what you really want.

My impressions:

Noor has done a good job at creating a very accessible book specifically designed (or so I presume) to introduce sceptics to the law of attraction.

She melds together both this and psychology to present a compelling argument for the strategies within the book. Although I would say it’s more 80% law of attraction and 20% psychology.

Just F*cking Do It is an easy read and although I wish Noor went into more detail with practical strategies, I’m sure they can be found on her website.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

I’d say if you love the universe, law of attraction talk then read this book – you’ll love it. Similarly, if you’re at a relatively early stage of your personal development journey, you’d also find this book useful.

What I personally got from the book:

Not too much. A lot of the personal development topics I’ve already explored for a number of years so there was nothing new there to get me excited. Although I have to say, it’s always nice to be reminded. If anything, it served as a personal development top-up.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/justdoituk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/justdoitus

What Got You Here Won't Get You There by Marshall Goldsmith

What Got You Here Won’t Get You There by Marshall Goldsmith

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Become more successful as an already successful person.
  • Do this by improving yourself.
  • Use this book to analyse, accept and improve the things you don’t do so well in leadership.

My impressions:

What Got You Here is 100% a book about leadership and in particular, one about leadership for medium to large organisations.

It’s also a book filled with extremely useful, soul-searching, hard-hitting truths about some of the things you could be doing to ruin relationships or stop yourself or your team from progressing. Most of which you might not even realise.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

If you have any kind of team, or you’re in any kind of leadership position, this book will guide you.

What I personally got from the book:

While I don’t have a team, the lessons within this book have been particularly useful for self-awareness and relationship management.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/gotyouhereuk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/gotyouhereus

Thinking in Bets by Annie Duke

Thinking in Bets by Annie Duke

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • How to make better decisions when you don’t have all the information.
  • Life is more like poker than chess.
  • How to determine if your good or bad outcomes are due to luck or skill and why this is important.

My impressions:

Thinking in Bets could have been a big hit for me but it lacked one very important aspect that would have solidified the information in my mind easier – it had very few real-world examples.

Annie spends a good portion of the book talking about the concept of thinking in bets which is fascinating and insightful but almost every example given was either a sports reference or a gambling reference. It took until I was about two-thirds of the way through the book to find something relatable which is a shame.

A few more relatable or even personal stories would have made each concept far more enjoyable and easier to absorb.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

Love the strategy of sports, gambling, sales or even the psychology of thinking in bets, this book is for you.

What I personally got from the book:

Although I struggled to read this one. I did get some really valuable information and insight in the last third. Particularly there’s a long section on mental time travel and your future-self which I found to be fascinating.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/thinkinginbetsuk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/thinkinginbetsus

Everything is Figureoutable by Marie Forleo

Everything is Figureoutable by Marie Forleo

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Instil the belief of ‘everything is figureoutable’ and conquer life.
  • Train your brain to aid in your success.
  • Do this by following sage advice from Marie Forleo herself.

My impressions:

I don’t know what I expected from Marie’s book but boy was I impressed. Marie has a very relatable writing style. The stories she uses to illustrate her lessons are compelling and engaging and incredibly easy to read.

She also utilises psychology, other people’s story and humour to help important concepts sink in.

I’m not usually a fan of more overarching books on business and life, but this one contains a lot of gems and Marie has done a wonderful job.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

Especially if you’re a woman in business, give this a read. It’s like a friend wrote it just for you.

What I personally got from the book:

There are so many gems within this book to take away and implement into life and business. My particular favourite was Marie’s technique to help you determine if that gut feeling you have is intuition or fear. I’ll be using that one regularly.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/figureoutableuk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/figureoutableus

Lift as You Climb by Viv Groskop

Lift as You Climb by Viv Groskop

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • How to climb as a woman in business, work and leadership.
  • How to then lift other women while you climb.
  • Why this is important.

My impressions:

Lift as You Climb is what it says it is, a feminist book about how to get further in life and business while also thinking about and lifting up the women around you.

It’s a matter-of-fact book written by a close friend who isn’t afraid to tell you like it is. Lift as You Climb covers everything from networking, to meetings, to competition and more.

It’s a pretty good book. It has plenty of practical applications and does serve as a reminder of the good we can individually do. I do however wish it had more case studies, examples and generally more information to make the book a little meatier.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

If you’re generally interested in the concept of the book then give it a go. You’ll get some good tips that’s for sure.

What I personally got from the book:

A general reminder of how to put into practice the lifting part of the climb. One to work on!

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/liftclimbuk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/liftclimbus

I Will Teach You to be Rich by Ramit Sethi

I Will Teach You to be Rich by Ramit Sethi

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Get your finances in order in 6 weeks.
  • Secure your future while living well now.
  • Everything from bank accounts, to investing.

My impressions:

I Will Teach You to be Rich has been on my ‘to-read’ list ever since I started to get my finance mindset and actual finances in order. 

I was already aware of Ramit’s relatable and matter-of-fact style so knew I’d enjoy reading the book. So I wasn’t disappointed.

Ramit has done an excellent job of making confusing topics understandable and potentially exciting. Well worth a read no matter where you are on your financial journey.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

Anyone, especially if you don’t have your money in order and even if you don’t currently earn a lot. You won’t regret it.

What I personally got from the book:

I was pleased to find I already had a few strategies in this book in place. There’s more work to do though so I’ll be streamlining and tweaking my finances over the next few weeks/months.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/teachrichuk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/teachrichus

Money by Rob Moore

Money by Rob Moore

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Expand your money mindset with debunked myths and self-awareness.
  • Make more money by truly learning about money.
  • Give freely both in time, money and value to expand your wealth and purpose in life.

My impressions:

Money was a surprise to me. It’s a long book so I expected to need my big brain hat on to absorb everything. I also expected the book to focus more on the technical aspects of making money but I was surprised on both accounts.

Of course, the book is lengthy and it does go into the technical aspects of money management but its main focus is money-mindset. Rob talks about your purpose, how this relates to the work you do and the wealth you create. How to overcome your limiting beliefs around money and he covers topics with intention and empathy.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

No matter if you’re employed, starting a business or otherwise, this book will give you the fuel you need to get your mindset and practicals in order.

What I personally got from the book:

Some ‘money concepts’ I’ve always found difficult to fully grasp. This book did an excellent job of solidifying them in my mind so I can get to work implementing. Well worth the time it takes to read (which for me was one long Sunday).

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/moneyknowuk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/moneyknowus

Thrive by Arianna Huffington

Thrive by Arianna Huffington

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Balance your life and work with 4 essential pillars.
  • Learn from Arianna’s life lessons and science combined.
  • Live better, with more intention and thrive.

My impressions:

After building an online empire such as the Huffington Post, you’d think Arianna would be well-versed in overwork and burnout. You’d be right. Which is exactly why this book came to fruition.

Arianna talks candidly about her experiences and what she’s learned from her mistakes in work and life. Throughout Thrive she talks about sleep, meditation, social media and more to encourage the reader to seek more balance in life and work.

Encouragingly Arianna calls on science and other authors to frequently back up her own stories. I only wish she shared more stories to balance it out.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

This book combines businesswoman, mother, science, work, success and balance into one book. It shares small insight into Arianna’s life but would be worth reading if any of the above list interests you.

What I personally got from the book:

In almost every section of the book, I’ve written down an extra tip I’m going to implement into my life. One of which will be keeping a dream journal.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/thriveuk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/thriveus

Search Inside Yourself by Chade-Meng Tan

Search Inside Yourself by Chade-Meng Tan

The book in 3 sentences/summary:

  • Increase productivity, creativity and happiness with this book created by the man behind the Google program.
  • Experience Google work culture and use it within your business and life.
  • Feel more at ease, in control and excited to utilise the practices within this book.

My impressions:

I wasn’t sure what to expect with Search Inside Yourself but I had a feeling the content would be top notch, especially considering it’s associated with such a massive brand such as Google.

I wasn’t disappointed, Chade-Meng did a brilliant job of introducing and illustrating the benefits of mindfulness, meditation, journaling and more in the workplace and in daily life. 

He backs his findings up with research, experience and stories and writes in a compelling and easy to understand manner.

Should you read it? (who would benefit from this): 

This is a good one for the mindful-sceptics. Chade-Meng will change your mind! Literally.

What I personally got from the book:

There were many ah-ha moments within this book which I will be logging away in my brain for later. Similarly, there were many tweaks to my own habits which I will start to implement having read this book.

Get your copy (UK): limitbreaker.co/go/searchinsideuk

Get your copy (US): limitbreaker.co/go/searchinsideus

Final thoughts on the 30 day reading challenge

Doing this 30 day reading challenge gave me the jumpstart I needed to get reading again. I plan on doing monthly ‘what I’m reading’ posts moving forward.

So if you’d like to keep up with me, subscribe to my email list and let’s connect!

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase one of the books in this post through my link I may get a commission which is a great way to support this blog and my YouTube channel. If you do, thank you so much, it means the world!

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4 Comments

  1. AS Renner

    19th February 2021 at 9:28 AM

    This list of book reviews is so helpful! Thank you, Gina! I wrote some books down that I will definitely dive into myself. And if you need a tandem partner to learn German, I am here for you. Anja

    Reply
    • Gina Lucia

      19th February 2021 at 3:11 PM

      So glad you found them useful Anja! I might have to take you up on that offer when I get around to starting my learning journey. Do you recommend any tools for learning?

      Reply
  2. Cindy

    20th February 2021 at 5:47 AM

    So useful Gina! I’m leaving this comment and then heading to the online bookstore

    Reply
    • Gina Lucia

      20th February 2021 at 12:21 PM

      Ah wonderful! Can’t wait to hear about what you read.

      Reply

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